Have you ever noticed that when you ask someone for their recipe and try it yourself, it doesn’t always come out quite like the original? Sure, it’s still good, but it’s just different. The same works in reverse. You give a friend your world famous cookie recipe and they call you up. “It didn’t work!” they complain. “It doesn’t taste anything like yours.”
When you make your applesauce cake or your enchiladas, you are adding more than just ingredients. You have a special touch. Maybe it’s the way you hold the spoon that makes the food a little fluffier. Maybe it’s the way you add the eggs one at a time or all together. Whatever it is, it’s uniquely yours and you can’t pass that along with the recipe.
The same goes for writing. You can take a hundred classes on writing dialogue and take notes until you run out of ink, and yet your dialogue will come out different from every other person in that class. You may all be using the same principles, but because you are you, your dialogue will have something in it that no one else’s has.
“But I went to Rachel Ann Nunes’ class on romance!” you say to yourself. “Why can’t I write like her?” It’s because Rachel is Rachel, and you are you. Wouldn’t it be boring if we all wrote exactly the same way? There would be no room for individuality, for personality in our writing. Isn’t that half the fun of it?
In summary, don’t be discouraged if you don’t write like Anita Stansfield or Gerald Lund or Keith Fisher. Find what’s unique about you. Capitalize on it. Revel in it. It’s part of who you are, and that’s something no one else can copy.