Saturday, January 28, 2012

What you Write is Usually What you Read

Good news!

What you write is usually what you read.

Why is that good news?

Think about it. If you enjoy writing fantasy, then you're usually reading fantasy. You learn about plot, setting, characterization and more by reading fantasy. You see the style of the writer, you learn what he/she does to  make a fantasy chapter work.

You also see what doesn't work.

Photo by Sarah Sphar, courtesy of Flickr
I have an awful time when I read a book with too many characters. And I guess this can happen in any book, but fantasy novels seem to grasp the concept of multiple characters fairly easily. Think of Harry Potter, The Lord of the Rings, The Chronicles of Narnia, and you'll see multiple characters. Though the authors handle the concept well, not every writer can, or should. But it's a good idea to read such authors because they give us a good example of how to make each character unique, how to scatter the characters throughout the novel so that the reader doesn't forget who a character is, even giving us a map or two so we can see the world in which all of  the character's live.

If you prefer books by C.S. Lewis in the non-fiction category, like I do, you may find yourself writing books like, "Conquering your Goliaths--A Parable of the Five Stones," like me; especially if you like C.S. Lewis' fiction too.
Conquering Your Goliaths: A Parable of the Five Stones
My new book, released Jan. 23, 2012

If you're not reading what you like to write, get on it! There really is a purpose in reading what you want to write; not all of it is necessarily--fun. Sometimes, when I'm reading an especially good book, I go back over paragraphing, vivid imagery used, and so on. I look for what the author does that I can incorporate into my own writing, using my own voice, of course.

Great lessons can be learned from the authors we love, and we need to take their words into consideration, not only for the pure enjoyment of the read, but for our own benefit--as an author.

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