How to know if you have writing talent when writing in a foreign language?

I’ve grown up learning English as a second language, but in a system where my first language was hardly ever taught. In fact, I’d say I know more about the rules of the English language than the rules of Arabic. It is only natural that the narrator’s voice in my thought is in English. Still, I’m not a native; so how do I know if I have the talent?
The answer can’t be good grades in writing classes. Good spelling and (somewhat) sound grammar were enough for an A. After all, the teachers were not looking for ‘it’. They were not building writers. They were building students who might eventually use English on daily basis at work, or watch an movie without subtitles every once in a while. My writing did not need inspiration since technical correctness was the criteria.
The answer can’t be reviews from my friends. I can jot down 500 words nonsense, and they’ll just admire it because very few people write in my culture. Prolificacy shocks them. Awe strikes them just by the length of my writing. If they struggled with writing assignments, then someone who writes with their own free will must be talented.
Aside from my culture, can the answer be how much I love to write? I love to write therefore I’m talented? I love to sing in the shower, but my voice would destroy lives. Another strike…
I googled my question, but in every forum it ends up in a debate about skill vs talent. I already know my skill is lacking. It’s something I’m willing to work on. But I do believe in talent, or an innate capacity towards growing. Some people are born with higher IQs, some people with characteristics that allow them to be better public speakers. Of course a person can learn to perform better on a test or use better body language in a presentation, but they might still lack ’it’.
So how do I know if I have the writing ‘it’?

Who’s joining NaNoWriMo this year?

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NaNoWriMo is a National novel writing month.  Basically, the goal is to get you and people interested in writing to actually write. Here is how it works:

National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) is a fun, seat-of-your-pants approach to creative writing. On November 1, participants begin working towards the goal of writing a 50,000-word novel by 11:59 p.m. on November 30. Valuing enthusiasm, determination, and a deadline, NaNoWriMo is for anyone who has ever thought fleetingly about writing a novel.”

I was a little disappointed to discover that there are no events in Egypt (what did I expect, really?!). Anyway, I’ll still be registering and joining online.

Anyway else here joining?

 

Three awesome resources for writing your first novel and a quick update.

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About one month ago, I posted saying that I decided to bet on myself and start writing my first novel. So far, the first draft sucks and reads a lot like cave-man language, but we all once traced letters in a swigged font before learning to write our names, huh. I’ve got to start somewhere!

Anyway, today I reached 36,500 words mark. Almost half of the first draft is done- Bazinga! I’ve to say, the eid vacation (a week) helped get some millage out of me.

Now enough about me. Here are three awesome resources for the budding writer who is slaving away at his/her first novel.

1- Scrivener

Download this program right now! I saw many people swearing by it online, and I didn’t believe them until I actually tried it. It is the best writing software out there. It is easy to get lost when writing the first novel, but it made it easy to combine everything in one place, which you can later export in all sorts of formats (including epub!).

I’ll dedicate a whole post to it soon.

You can download a trial here: https://www.literatureandlatte.com/scrivener.php

2- Fiction writing for dummies

 

I’ll admit: I didn’t expect much out of this book, after taking a look at the Japanese for dummies one. Yet, as it turns out, it is actually very well organized and includes guides you from plotting to finding a publisher.

What it doesn’t tell you about though is proof reading and such. It is not a grammar book.

I also recommend you take a look at blog of Randy Ingermanson, one of the authors. He explains a method he calls “snowflake” for designing a novel. http://www.advancedfictionwriting.com/articles/snowflake-method/

3- Terrible minds blog by Chuck Wendig

This blog is my motivation bible! It was got my started. One of the posts, ‘25 THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT WRITING A NOVEL’, is the reason I’m so determined to finish my first novel. The first commandment was “FINISH THE SHIT THAT YOU STARTED”.  That’s what I call tough love!

It has great tips and information, so check it out:

http://terribleminds.com/ramble/