Tricks of the Writing Trades (5 of 5): “Faking Authenticity”

From the concerted efforts of writers on major motion pictures to comics creators, novelists, travel bloggers, copywriters and others in between, writers are using an arsenal of techniques, methods and tricks in the shared pursuit of capturing the emotions of the audience. 

The creativity of it all is fascinating. So here are my thoughts on…

Researching to “Fake Authenticity”

All writers need to research a subject in order to create a level of authenticity — ya know, faking it until ya making it! That inherently leads to a level of authoritativeness as well as whether the reader will finish reading what you wrote. Readers want to learn and they have a 6th sense about whether or not they’re being bullshitted to.

The best thing writers can do is research everything humanly possible on a subject. Books from the library, videos on youtube, blogs, magazines, word of mouth, infographics, movies, songs, anything you can think of. Each source may present something new and fresh on the matter. Research is essential.

In fact, a friend of mine is a travel blogger. She’s probably visited just over half the places she writes about. The rest of the time she fakes it. I know, right! But she’s so good at creating authenticity that readers eat it up. Her research is phenomenal and because she’s travelled so much, she knows what to look for in her research to draw out the authenticity of a destination. It’s why her blog is an authority on travel. Impressive, right? Though, if she knew I was talking about her dirty little secret, she would 100% murder me.

Regardless, all writers fake it to some extent. We have to. But that research pays off. In fact, you no longer just feign authority, you become an authority. A prime example would be science fiction writer Ray Bradbury who was enlisted by NASA because they found he knew more about future stuff than they did. Cool, no?

Anyway, that’s it. I hope this very short series of tricks of the writing trades has helped you a smidgen. I’m not expert on it all but I do have experience – and at the end of the day that’s what matters.

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Oh, I have to turn the handle.

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