Posted by: reneewildes1 | February 9, 2012

Writers Never Stop Learning

I’ve been toying with the idea of going back to college for my Bachelor’s Degree. (I have an Associate’s in Applied Science from MATC Madison.) I just don’t want my brain to turn to mush and a BS will open doors an AAS can’t – give me more opportunities. Learn and Grow and Change. But even without formal learning, you should always strive to improve. Every day.

Writers are readers too, and enjoy a good book as well as the next person. We have to recharge our batteries or just escape the everyday blechs, too. But I don’t know about the rest of you, but I can’t seen to read without noticing technical stuff – same way I watch movies. I look for unique phrasing, great dialogue, tension, motivation. Are the loose ends tied up? Are all the questions answered?

We just rented Real Steel with Hugh Jackman. The epitome of the anti-hero. I love Hugh Jackman. I HATED his character in this movie. He was…a JERK. A coldblooded, heartless JERK. But I settled in thinking, “Okay, here’s the MOTHER of character arcs coming and let’s see what happens.” The movie needed 15 more minutes. The did NOT tie up all the loose ends. These weren’t the kind of loose ends to be answered with a sequel, either. They were the kind that needed to redeem the charcter in at least THIS fan’s eyes. I still love High Jackman, but the writer & the director left me shaking my head…

NOTE TO SELF: TIE UP ALL ALL THE LOOSE ENDS BECAUSE IF YOU DON’T THE READER WILL NOTICE AND GET PISSED AT YOU…

I have a new favorite author now–LORA LEIGH. She is not for the faint-of-heart if you don’t like HAWT sex scenes. I can’t write that hot, BUT I enjoy reading it once in a while. But that’s NOT why “Heat Seeker” is on my “have-til-I die” shelf. (Goodreads review coming) This author has such a gift for writing INTENSE EMOTION and HIGH STAKES that it leaves you breathless. My first thought was “God, I SUCK!” as in a total Wayne’s World “We’re not worthy!” moment (eek–there I go showing my age again!) but then I came to the realization that we just NEVER STOP LEARNING. There’s always going to be someone out there who does something a little different/better than me. However, writing is a craft and if you see someone doing something that knocks your socks off, study it. Break it down, see how they do it, practice doing it yourself. So that’s my new “homework for the night.” To read/study/dissect Lora Leigh’s writing and see if I can infuse even a teensy bit of that mojo in my current WIP, which could use an adrenalin boost.

As a writer you can’t ever get complacent. Keep learning, practicing, polishing. Push the envelop, push your boundaries. Every book should be better than the one before. Make it darker, deeper, richer. Don’t be afraid to try something new. If at first it’s awkward or strange, keep at it until it flows. It’s all part of the process. Don’t be afraid–you have to grow. Allow yourself to do so. If you don’t you get stagnant, tread water and your books start sounding all the same. You don’t want to ever been that author who gets a reader to “Gee, sounds like I’ve read this before” and they STOP READING. You don’t want to be “Read one and you’ve read them all.” That’s the kiss of death!

NOTE TO SELF: EMAIL LORA LEIGH AND ASK HER IF SHE’S GOING TO RT…

 

 

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