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I am trying to improve my English writing skills. But I don't know what a good piece of written work means and hence cannot set my goal/target. Does using hard/rare words and metaphors makes one's writing good?

P.S At present, I am reading a paragraph or two from a book, then I try to recall the content/fact of the para and then rewrite the whole two paras with the said fact in my own way and then compare two pieces of work. But most of the time I end up mimicking the author. I guess this happens because I don't have an independent perspective on the said topic. Is this a good training method and how should I improve it to avoid the problems I mentioned above.

  • Absolutely not. They make it seem pretentious. They can only be safely used when the piece is already good. – Weather Vane Jun 6 at 20:11
  • The awkward moment when I had to look for the meaning of the word pretentious :-) – henceproved Jun 6 at 20:12
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    First, you need to figure out what you mean by "good writing." Is it writing that sells well? Writing that certain kinds of people enjoy? Writing that's persuasive? All of these things are aspects of good writing and each of them have different demands. Mimicry is probably useful, as long as you don't think good writing must be totally original. – Juhasz Jun 6 at 21:00
  • I think the question is primarily opinion-based. – Lucian Sava Jun 6 at 21:26
  • Or you want to improve the visual aspect of your writing? Learn calligraphy? Spelling? Speed? – virolino Jun 7 at 6:28

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