How to write ORGANIC PROSE

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Because of school, we've been trained to write formally, but that's often very stiff and yawn-inducing. Not good for novelists at all (unless a character is writing an academic paper). Some of you have asked me how to write with emotion and make their prose have that human touch rather than sounding like an academic paper. My friend Ronnie (up in the dedication!) provided me with her wisdom on the matter. This is her technique and may not work for everyone, but if you struggle with a natural writing voice, this is definitely worth a try.

She's talking about her story, Homeland: It's not all that polished at all. (Actually, before I post them, my rough drafts kind of look like this:

Ishiruu Ryu . . . was regally angry. Now--regal--that means his face sort of flushed red and all the color went away from his lips, but he's less proper than Xieun, so he lets some emotion show through--by gritting his teeth, a habit he had developed, he raises his voice. "Who the hell are you?"

At the end of the chapter I immediately go back to these sections and truncate them in about 5 mins to:

The color in Ishiruu Ryu's lips seemed to face and dissipate into his face. Through gritted teeth, he raises his voice so that it falls just short of a yell: "Who the hell are you?"

So my crappy rough draft is actually very slightly polished--if it wasn't, people wouldn't be able to get too far because I ramble in my rough drafts when I'm deciding on actual symbolism, comparing or contrasting, etc. I'm thinking what I have so far of Homeland is just me dicking around and trying to get a sense of the world and story


(back to Yuffie) The quote on my profile: If it sounds like writing, rewrite it.

This is so important if you want to write engaging prose. If you take notes and structure the chapter using your own ramblings and musings without worrying if it's grammatically correct or even sounds good, that'll automatically make it sound better.

Conversational writing (ie. it sounds like your character is having a conversation with the reader. Not necessarily a direct or conscious conversation, but it should SOUND like one) is the one readers can usually relate to the best.

When you write the base of the story in your own words and simply augment them, I think the writing will sound so much more natural.

Give it a shot and let me know how it works for you guys! I'll be trying this myself with whatever I write next, too.

If you have other methods of making your writing sound natural and not-forced, post in the comments below!

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