I think that in my progression as a writer, I am stuck. I write all the time, and I am always trying to develop my style, but I can't seem to get any better.

For awhile I would get better and better with every piece I wrote, and now I'm pretty much stuck. Every time I post something, it gets "That was pretty cool"s and stuff like that, but I can't push it over the line to where I can get "Wow"s out of people. Where I can paint a picture in their head and make it stick until long after they have finished reading my piece.

I'm tired of "cool". I want "whoa."

Should I just keep writing? I have been trying to experiment with using different styles and techniques, but I don't feel like I'm actually getting better.

What can I do to get off of this plateau?
Today I feel electric grey
I hope tomorrow, neon black
Keep at it. Nothing else you can really do.
Only play what you hear. If you don’t hear anything, don’t play anything.
-Chick Corea
Are you getting proper criticism from anyone? If so are you keeping in mind what they've said when you're writing a new piece?
I was in your position. Here's what I did. None of it was intentional, maybe not all of it applies, but still.

I didn't write almost anything for 2 and a half months. I spent that time living, thinking, and reading.
When I came back, I spent a few days just looking at pieces, and critting a couple.
Thought some more.
Finally, I wrote about subjects so close to my heart I had been afraid to touch them before. I kept it honest and tried to be as un-intellectual as I possibly could.

that might help. Some other suggestions would be to examine your writing style, your way of thinking (metacognition), and whether you are really putting your soul into what you do. Writing in a different style (song or prose) might help, or adopting a different tone or "voice".

Mostly though, I would just get away from poetry for awhile. Come back to it with a fresh mind and less limited prospects. I understand it can be hard to disconnect from something like writing, so if you don't want to take my advice, please don't.

EDIT: Just reread your post. Sorry about the writing style stuff, it seems you already mentioned it. But I can't help but wonder how drastic your change was. I was thinking along the lines of inventing a character and channeling him/her into your writing, or something along those lines. Of course, that's just one example.
Last edited by Hesh at Aug 24, 2009,