Writing is a craft every bit as much as woodworking or painting or knitting. It requires one to learn the basic techniques and then move beyond to the nuances and subtleties. To begin to master the craft.
Yet writing cannot be mastered, at least in the same way that woodworking or sewing might be mastered. There are no definitive levels of expertise because in the final analysis, what is “perfect” writing is simply in the minds of the reader.
Perhaps the most apt comparison is with painting, sculpting, music—any art judged by the consumer of that art. It is analogous to the style a woodworker might choose to carve or the pattern a knitter might decide to complete.
So writing is less about mastering and more about constantly learning. No one—not even the “masters”—really get it all right every time. They just don’t.
And neither should you—or I—expect to learn it all. To master writing.
But therein lies the silver lining. There is always something more to learn. There is always a new nuance to discover, a new perspective to try, a new dimension to add, and as we find these nuggets of understanding, our writing improves.