But…but, if I read now, won’t that delay my writing?


Reading is the fundamental block to any author.  It will teach you techniques, clichés, and even how to correctly use the right words in the story you are writing right now.


Right now, you are reading, hopefully being inspired on your next masterpiece, which in that case, may I have a signed copy?    You need to study what you are reading, memorize the techniques, the way he or she brought you into the story.  Why can’t you put it down?   Learn why you can’t put it down, you are just as talented as that author in your own right.


I owe a lot of my writing to Katie MacAlister, Gena Showalter, and Candice Havens.   When I read their stories, their books let me sink deeply into their world, lets me see how they write, how they develop the stories.  One of the biggest bits I learned from reading their stories is how to add humor in but not overdoing it.  I have also read Nora Robert’s stories, the queen of romance, her love scenes are something that most readers and writers would want to emulate.


I have another example of stories that move me, taught me how to write that scene that drags you through the screams and movements.  Every time I read erotic author, Sasha White’s Stories, I learn how to weave romance in just a little better.   I am not writing what she writes but romance does play a lot in my stories.


So…no reading won’t magically bring the author out in you, but it will help you get through those tough scenes.  Some people will say it is copying, but really, you are not copying their ideas or words, but their way of teaching you how to write that killer scene, that scene, a year down the road, somebody will say, “Man that is just like, blah…blah, in your book.”


I am not telling you to stop writing, or to stop reading what you are currently reading because you are reading a non-fiction novel on the civil war.   I am saying that reading is not bad for you when it comes to writing.  You don’t need to read that genre that you are writing.  Like it or not, what you are reading though, will shape your story, bring out a different bit of your writing technique into play.


There is trick to this though, and that is balance.  Balance is the key to everything great in life.  If your mind is not balance, your life is not balance, or if you are reading the entire time and not really paying attention to the story, most likely if you’re speed reading the story, this will cause harm to your writing.   If you look at any sport, any activity in life, and you are not balanced, it suffers.


For example, I am a golfer, at first I was a hacker, but I read everything about golf, watch movies after movies, even bought myself a training video.  The thing like in writing, I practiced the techniques, I studied every movement, that coming year I was at top of a game, I dropped more than 30 strokes off my game by doing it.  I was down to a handicap of 3 which is considered really good for amateur golfers.   Then life kept getting in the way, my golfing went downhill.  I didn’t know why it was suffering, but the ball no longer could seem to find the short grass.   I looked at everything again, and again, and it wasn’t helping.  Then I learned about balanced, my mind was not there where it should have been.  Just like that golfing was back to where it should have been.


So read, but pace yourself.  Write, I would say pace yourself, but face it you need to write as fast as you can.  Pace the story though, don’t rush through scenes here and there to get to the exciting ones.  Smell the lilacs on the side of the road, drag the reader into the life of your book.

Published in: on February 3, 2013 at 09:31  Leave a Comment  

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