I remember when I said I’d write a new post every day. That was optimistic. I’m still not sure what to do with Charlie, but I wanted to write a little about the connection between reading and writing.
I think it is impossible to be one without the other. You can’t be a good reader without appreciating how hard it is to create something out of nothing, and you can’t be a good writer without understanding how words sound on a page as well as understanding why good writers are good writers.
The best advice I’ve ever gotten is to emulate a writer you admire. It doesn’t have to be freaking Charles Dickens or Ernest Hemingway, just someone you enjoy reading. Don’t worry about copying them, just learn their cadences and their pacing. I wrote a story based on Chuck Palahniuk’s style for one of my college workshop classes, and it wasn’t great, but it was a good lesson. It teaches you to think about why you like what you like. Why, exactly, does JK Rowling pull you into her Harry Potter novels? Why did you devour the entire Hunger Game series in one week? Why did you finish that book by John Irving with such a satisfied feeling? Pay attention!
Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case because, apparently, Stephanie Meyers has never read a book in her life. Or never took a grammar class in her life. Or doesn’t have an editor. Or all three. Check out the link at the bottom of the page, it is my new favorite thing to read.