You don’t want to be a mediocre writer. You want to be a truly amazing writer! Do you know how attainable that goal can be? (Hint: it’s super attainable.) Becoming an amazing writer is all about putting in the work and growing as a writer. And you are capable of both.

Better writing comes from doing the work, not how many books you sell or the number of followers you have on Instagram. While both of those are great outward statistics, they will never make you a better writer. That’s something only you can do on your own. And where we come in; here are our eight tips to grow as a writer this year.

Examine your work.

Take your work under your own microscope and pick it apart. Make notes of what you do really well and mark areas you can still improve on. Use your own notes as your baseline to measure your growth as a writer this year.

Get feedback.

You don’t have to send your manuscript off to an agent to get feedback on your work. From joining a writing group to having a go-to writer friend who is willing to read your work to one of our critique services, there are plenty of ways you can receive helpful feedback on your work.

Take a class.

You don’t have to spend an entire weekend away at a writer’s retreat or conference to take a writing class. Do some research. You may discover you have local writing classes in your area. Writer’s Digest and Skillshare also offer tons of writing classes online.

Focus on confidence.

Work to grow your confidence as a writer this year. You’ll see the most growth when you believe in yourself and what you are capable of doing.

Expand your genres.

Learning to write a different genre is a great way to expand your capabilities. Remember, not everything you write has to be published. Take the time to study other genres and try your hand at them. Writing is about trial and error. So, give it a try and see how you’re able to improve your writing by having a more well-rounded approach.

Study writing.

Read books about writing and you’re sure to pick up some helpful tips from writing greats like Stephen King, Anne Lamott, and more. Once you read about other authors’ approaches to writing, you’ll better learn how to embrace your own writing.

Increase your writing speed.

One of the easiest ways to see improvement in your writing is to increase your writing speed. It’s not uncommon for writers to hit 1,000 words in one hour of writing. Not only does that require being distraction-free, but you also have to train yourself to freely write without pausing to edit. To increase your writing speed, start with smaller writing sprints and keep track of the number of words you’re able to complete during that time. The more writing sprints you complete, the more you’ll find you’re able to type more words in a shorter amount of time.

Set a personal writing challenge and finish.

Crossing the finish line on any writing project is always the end result, right? So, what better way to show growth as a writer this year than to finish a writing challenge you set for yourself? Your writing challenge doesn’t have to be an 80,000-word manuscript. You could choose to write a short story, a novella, or a specific number of blog posts. If you do set a goal of finishing your manuscript this year, know that we’re in your corner to help you get it published!

Do you notice a difference in your writing when you aim to grow in your craft? Read more of our writing advice to continue your writing growth.