Indictators of talent in creative writing

There are many talented writers, but many people still argue whether it’s nature vs. nurture. Is being a good writer a mix of the two, or is it solely based on talent? Also, what are some signs of talent or potential in someone’s writing?

  • It can be a mix of the two or one or the other. Personally, I showed a talent in writing from an early age. I passed with flying colors on literature and writing exams, and was always nominated to participate in school spelling bees. As I entered college, I tried pursuing the sciences, but that eventually led me back to writing. This is a great topic, but I feel as if there isn't a particular answer simply because it varies from person-to-person. Some individuals don't realize their talent until much later in their lifetime, where as for others it can be during adolescence. – Marina 4 years ago
  • Very true. It is a mix of both talent and hard work ethic. – Afanos 4 years ago
  • The answer is fairly simple - it's is a mix of both nature and nurture. Understanding the answer is a little more difficult. Writing is a hard skill and can be taught to just about anyone. However within this hard skill are many soft skills like creativity and problem solving which can not always be taught. That's why the degrees of good writing vary so widely and why we cannot say for certain that everyone is good by nature or even that everyone can one day be good by nurture. – ashleyab 4 years ago
  • Some is definitely nature; I've loved books and words since I was a little kid. But no writer ever reaches his or her potential without mentoring. Additionally, writers are always going to have different sub-gifts. One might be gifted at dialogue while another is better at setting, or one writer's talent might lend itself to poetry over fiction. Much of what is considered "creative writing" can't be taught strictly speaking, but can be nurtured. – Stephanie M. 4 years ago
  • Both Stephanie M. and ashleyab have very good points. I think the experience varies from writer to writer and each person contains a slightly different nature to nurture ratio. Personally, I have always been attracted to rich stories. Creating characters, scenarios, and dialogue seemed to come naturally but I had to be taught to write it down effectively. – ReidaBookman 4 years ago
  • I'm inclined to be suspicious of the word "talent" because it is subjective and also kind of disregards the amount of hard work that goes into learning a skill, writing included. There's also no accounting for taste - given that taste is a cultural construct, what we regard as talented changes from group to group, community to community etc. The "nature VS nurture" question could be an angle from which to examine the question of indicators of skill, but I'd want to stress to anyone writing this article that it can also be a deceptively binary question; the answer is almost always some variation of "both". – Cat 3 years ago

Article on this topic

Want to write about Writing or other art forms?

Create writer account