Monday, October 29, 2007

Read, Damn You.

One universal trait of all brilliant writers is that they are enthusiastic readers. Sometimes even voracious ones, at that. One of the best ways for us to learn our craft is to study those who've done it before. In the group, one of the most persistent themes in critiques is for us to say, "Okay, you're writing this kind of a story, and so did ___, go read this book he/she wrote."

Aside from the learning from example, being an enthusiastic reader also nurtures the love of books that any writer needs. There are few things that motivate so readily as to read an excellent story and think, "Okay, now I wanna do that." Then you're off to the races with a new spurt of energy. Huzzah!

My challenge for everyone this month is simple: Fit some extra reading time into your schedule. Allow yourself a book binge. Let the dirty dishes wait another half hour while you read a couple more chapters. They're not going anywhere, now, are they? You are hereby granted full permission to stay up past your bedtime to read "one more" chapter. You are also hereby granted permission to neglect your TV or computer this month. Now, I just got the latest issue of Realms of Fantasy this weekend, and it's sitting on the table calling out to me. Gotta go.


Debbie said...

Excellent challenge, and one I can do no problem since I read every night anyway. I did get out and write this month, too. Once at the marathon and once on my own. And I got a lot written both times. You may have something here.

Ali said...

Every now and again I manage :) I'm glad it worked/is working for you.