Post: Great authors share these 5 attributes


Every writer is unique, although most adhere to accepted standards and fundamental teachings. Still, no two authors are the same, which is part of what makes reading such an enjoyable activity. If you were to get to know some of the best-selling authors of all time, however, you might notice that they have certain characteristics in common. 

There aren’t any requirements stating that authors must possess specific characteristics to submit a manuscript. And, if someone has all the attributes mentioned in this blog, it doesn’t necessarily mean they’ll be a great writer. Is it mere coincidence that the most prolific, successful authors often share these characteristics, or something more?

Great authors often possess one or more of these characteristics

It’s unlikely that you’d have an opportunity to spend a day with some of the world’s best-selling authors. If you could, though, you might notice that they have these things in common: 

  • They are highly observant and pay attention to detail.
  • The best writers have an expansive vocabulary.
  • Great authors are usually avid readers.
  • They are disciplined at their craft.
  • Great writers possess clarity. 

Perhaps you know someone who writes for a living. Ask yourself whether the person you have in mind possesses any of these qualities. 

How do these attributes help someone become a great writer?

Being a great storyteller in written form means that you can transport readers into a fictional world in such a way that it seems real. Details and descriptions are integral components of quality storytelling. To develop a penchant for detail, you must be observant. You must also have a vast word bank (vocabulary) stored in your brain from which you can pluck just the right words to bring your story to life. Clarity is the quality that helps you assemble the right words into a simple form that is easy for the average person to understand.

Reading what by other authors have written is one of the best ways to fuel ideas in your mind. In addition to reading a wide genre of books on a regular basis, you must be disciplined in practicing your craft. You can’t become a great writer if you are not dedicated, motivated and disciplined. If you strive to develop these five attributes, you might be surprised at how much your writing skills improve. Consider focusing on a specific quality each week until it becomes a habit.