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Dear Dish-It: I'm A Better Writer Than My BFF

Everyone Can Write

Dear Dish-It,

I’ve been writing since I was three so now I am in the highest level in English. I have finished two books I have been writing so far, with one still on the go, which is about a renegade who doesn't know who his sister or father is and when he finds out his dad dies. My problem is that my BFF says I should write about happy things instead of broken families. Plus she says I shouldn't brag about being in the highest level, even though I don’t! The closest thing I’ve ever done to that is try and give her tips on how to make it up to the same level, but that didn’t go over too well. What should I do?

Free Spirit


Dear Free,


In terms of your best friend telling you what you should and shouldn’t write about, that’s an easy problem to solve. You can:

  • stop discussing your writing with her;
  • tell her you appreciate her opinion (and then do what you want with her advice); or
  • take her advice to heart and try writing something different than you normally do.

  • My personal vote is for the third option. You see, I happen to be a writer, too. My love for reading and writing when I was young has led me to my dream job. So when I give you this advice you have to understand that I really know what I’m talking about, as a professional writer. It’s great that you’re in the advanced English class, but in order to become a truly versatile and multifaceted writer, you’re going to have to start stepping out of your comfort zone once in a while. Trust me, trying to write about a topic or theme you normally would never consider is a good exercise and can really help you to advance your skills and grow as a writer. So your BFF is actually helping you become better at what you do, whether she meant it in a mean way or not.


    Now on to your second issue. If your friend doesn’t like getting help, simply stop helping her. I wasn’t there, so I don’t know how you offered your advice to her, but my feeling is she either took it the wrong way or you used a tone of voice or said it in a way that made her feel like you thought you were superior to her in your writing ability. I’m not saying you meant to be mean, but the fact is she took it badly. So, like I said, you may just want to back off in the advice department when it comes to writing. Or, try approaching her as an equal rather than someone who just happens to be at a lower skill level than you. Besides, you seem smart. Writing is totally arbitrary. I could read a published novel and love it, and you could read the same book and think it’s a piece of trash. Does that make the writer good or bad? Everyone writes differently and, in my opinion, most people write decently. Sure, there are rules of spelling, grammar, voice, syntax, consistency, etc. that may have to be learned or acquired, but everyone’s got a unique and active imagination that, when written down on paper or a computer, can become a pretty good tale for some readers.


    Finally, I’ll say this. If you truly want to help your friend, you should be conscious enough to know that giving advice only works when you’re willing to take it from other people, too. When she offers you her opinion on how you can evolve in your own ability as a writer (i.e. taking a shot at trying to writer a happier story), take it and thank her for being such a caring friend. Maybe that way she’ll be more open to taking advice from you.


    If you've got a burning question, need some love advice or find yourself thinking about things like sex, depression, self-esteem, boyfriends, girlfriends, best friends, bullying or peer pressure, don't hesitate to Dish-It here. Send your questions to deardish@kidzworld.com. And if you hang out in the chat rooms with other Kidzworld members who know you by your username, just send in your secret question using a different nickname if you want to stay anonymous – we promise that no one will ever know it's you. Remember: Dish-It gets a load of letters every day so it may take a while to reply to yours. Keep checking back for her reply, or watch for answered Dish-It questions that are similar to your own.


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    Comments

    ChubbyMoira

    ChubbyMoira wrote:

    Amen. I know how it feels to be a smarty pants life can be very hard. :angel
    commented: Fri Nov 25, 2011

    coolcharlie101
    love writing soo cool me 2 free
    commented: Thu Jun 16, 2011

    gleefunkybear

    gleefunkybear wrote:

    I know how you feel. I am at a high level in my writing. I don't mean to brag or anythi...
    commented: Mon May 09, 2011

    there are 4 more comments

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    BadwolfDW
    BadwolfDW posted in Friends:
    So i  agree with miley15 i think you guys should all meet up and tell them they can't leave or interrupt each other untill the issue is resolved let girl 2 know that the more she askes the less girl 1 will want to be her friend , also tell girl 1 that she shouldn't just run away.  Girl 1 is trying to be friends with girl2 but  i mean they dont need to bff's but they should not make a big deal of each other. 
    reply about 12 hours
    sugarpetals
    my parents would be around 7
    reply about 14 hours
    Pink_Kitty
    My parents are very lenient about chores and messing around but they are NOT lenient at all about lying, respect, homework or safety stuff.
    reply about 14 hours
    miley15
    miley15 posted in Friends:
    ahaaaa...that's sorta confusing and annoying at the same time...but don't u think if they were really your friends they would listen to u? if they are really interested in being friend with u so tell em that u cannot stand this situation anymore and ask them politely but firmly to try to understand each other...or ur friendship will be ruined...i'm sure talking always solves any problems...
    reply about 14 hours
    avatar-me
    avatar-me posted in Friends:
    Ok here's what's going on. Girl1 (my best friend) can't stand girl2 (my other friend). And girl2 wants to be friends with girl1 but girl1 doesn't want to be friends with girl2. And girl2 keeps messaging girl1 and girl1 keeps telling her she doesn't want to be her friend. got you confused yet?  So this is what is making me write this. My best friend said that if I keep hanging around my other friend she will try to be nice. But every time those two are in the same place girl2 asks girl1 why they can't be friends and that just sets girl1 off. And then I have to stop it. I love how my best friend is willing to hang around my other friend for me but I hate how my other friend won't stop bringing up why the two of them can't be friends. No matter how much girl1 and I tell her that girl1 doesn't want to be her friend she keeps asking. I like hanging out with both of them but not at the same time and when I hang out with one and not the other they ask why and I spending more time with the other one then with them. I can't take it anymore!!!  Please help me me before I loose it,              avatar-me
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