Tuesday, February 9, 2010

The Other Side of Writing

It stands to reason that in order to write well one must read well. Read extensively, that is. Read a variety of literature. Yes, I love teen novels filled with angst and suspense. But I also love my classics (Pride and Prejudice, Wuthering Heights, The Witch of Blackbird Pond), poetry (Margaret Atwood, Theodore Roethke, TS Eliot), thrillers (Vince Flynn novels) and adore my British cozies. And let's not forget that my bedside table is stacked with original pulp fiction.
The danger of reading all the same stuff all the time is that you will begin to write just like everyone you are reading.
It's kind of like leaving New York to go live in Texas for ten years. Eventually you will begin to sound like the natives.
The voices of the writers you read seep into you.
Expose yourself to something different every so often.
Even if you have to push your way through it and it feels like torture. (Yes, I know, that means I have to finish A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius or else I shall be a hypocrite).
So today, I have written nothing and have been both pushing myself through Eclipse and finding myself, at odd intervals, racing through it.
Unplug and read.

No comments:

Post a Comment