Friday, February 3, 2017

The Best Writing Advice There is

The best writing advice anyone can give:

Read, read a lot, then read some more.

There has never been a great writer (or even a good one) that wasn't first a reader. To write a story yourself, you have to immerse yourself in stories. My mother read to us as children. She took us to the library and always made sure we had books to read. My older sister told me fairy tales. Then I went to college and became an English major. (I don't make a lot of money now, but I read a lot of stories). Read widely in the genre you want to write. If you want to write fantasy, read

  • Jim Butcher
  • Mercedes Lackey
  • Roger Zelazny 
  • George RR Martin
  • Charlaine Harris
  • Chloe Neill
  • Diana Gabaldon
  • Jacqueline Carey
  • Genevieve Jack
  • Etc
  • Etc
And as you read, note what it is about their work that takes you into their world, makes you feel, makes you think.

Read widely in genres you don't want to write. Read mysteries and thrillers. Even romance novels, if you have to. Read
  • Douglas Adams
  • Rhys Bowen
  • Janet Evanovich 
  • Margaret Atwood
  • Tim O'Brien
Read classics
  • Jane Austen
  • Ernest Hemingway
  • Matthew Lewis
  • Joseph Conrad
  • Louisa May Alcott
  • Willa Cather
  • Nathaniel Hawthorne
  • William Shakespeare (definitely Shakespeare, you have to read Shakespeare)
  • Chaucer
And when you've read everyone on the list, go find some more to read. How to books can help, but nothing substitutes from having read a lot yourself. 

So if you want to be a writer, go and pick up a book.