Years ago, Kurt Vonnegut wrote an article sponsored by the International Paper Company, on how to write with style. He intended it mainly for writers of non-fiction, but the tips apply equally to novelists or short story writers. I'll feature one per day for the next seven days.
1: Find a subject you care about
Find a subject you care about and which you in your heart feel others should care about. It is this genuine caring, and not your games with language, which will be the most compelling and seductive element in your style.
I am not urging you to write a novel, by the way--although I would not be sorry if you wrote one, provided you genuinely cared about something. A petition to the mayor about a pothole in front of your house or a love letter to the girl next door will do.
I saw this idea in action when I first went to Hollywood and worked as a script reader. The company for which I worked accepted scripts from all over the country, without requiring that the writer have an agent. I noticed that many of the scripts we received from writers outside of New York and Los Angeles were not formatted correctly but they had an energy missing from many of the "correct" scripts. I think that's because those authors were writing about things they cared about, instead of trying to guess what Hollywood wanted or trying to ape the previous years' successes.