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For Writers,  Screenwriting

I Have a Great Story Idea—What Should I Do With It as an Amateur Writer?

You’ve thought up a wonderful idea for a story you are eager to write. Once you’ve brainstormed some more, you have a solid plot and are sure people will enjoy it. But, now what? Your first thought is probably to write a book, which is the preferred medium of many writers, especially beginner writers. Hold on, though, because writing a book is only one option, and some stories work so much better when written in a different form.

Beginner writers often stick to writing novels, short stories, and poems because they are more simple mediums and don’t require much upfront knowledge. However, many writers get stuck as their writing style is more suited to different mediums. Unfortunately, other writing forms can be tricky to learn and many beginners don’t know where to begin.

However, as much as I recommend exploring other writing mediums, let’s first take a look at their pros and cons, so you can figure out which is best for your story idea.

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The Pros and Cons of Different Writing Mediums

There are many writing mediums, some more popular than others, and all with their unique pros and cons. For this post, we will be discussing three different mediums: prose writing (including novels, novellas, and short stories), screenwriting (including screenplays and TV scripts), and graphic novels/comics.

Novels, Novellas, and Short Stories

This is where many writers begin, and not many explore past prose. These mediums are great for many writers and don’t require much learning beforehand. And, with few industry standards for writing prose, you can really be creative and let your imagination run wild. However, not all stories shine when written in these formats, so let’s take a look at the pros and cons.

Pros

  • few rules, guidelines, etc.
  • no limits (cost, budget, practicality concerns)
  • great for those who enjoy working alone
  • can self-publish for little cost

Cons

  • need to be able to write vividly and bring your story to life
  • not best for stories that rely heavily on visual effects

Great For

  • beginner writers
  • solo writers
  • all genres

Screenwriting

Writing for the big screen, whether television or movies, can be daunting for many writers. With all of the rules, standards, and software, it can be difficult to know where to begin. However, screenwriting is where many writers shine and can be fun to explore. There are some things you can do through screenwriting that aren’t possible in books. Adding easter eggs, visual gags, and similar elements are fun ways to bring your story to life.

Let’s look at the pros and cons of screenwriting.

Pros

  • allow the reader to see the story you’ve created
  • include visual gags, easter eggs, and hidden details
  • keep stories going indefinitely through television writing

Cons

  • can be complicated to learn
  • software is costly
  • harder to get story seen

Great For

  • visually detailed stories
  • long or unending stories

Graphic Novels/Comics

A special writing medium, comic writing is truly an art form. Creating engaging stories through art and writing is a careful balance. Some writers truly seem made to write comics and it’s where they work best. However, if you’re not one to collaborate, it may be difficult. So, let’s look at some pros and cons of comic writing.

Pros

  • writing doesn’t have to stand alone
  • work with other creative individuals

Cons

  • can’t let writing swamp art
  • need to find artist

Great For

  • wide range of genres
  • those who like collaborating

Which Is Best for My Story?

Now that we’ve seen the pros and cons of different writing mediums, do you have an idea of which is best for your story? Remember, it’s not just which works best for your story, but what works for you as a writer. Don’t be afraid to explore different formats and find what works for you.

Whichever you decide, be sure to write your story idea and create something wonderful.

Explore Other Mediums

As I mentioned, screenwriting can be difficult to dive into. If you think your story idea would best fit with screenwriting but don’t know how, here are some resources.

I have written a few posts about screenwriting that cover the basics, the software, and the formatting. Feel free to check them out:

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