Regardless of how busy I am, I always have at least one book I am reading on the art of writing. I just finished a great short book by James Scott Bell, Writing Fiction for all You're Worth. Written for authors, it is full of great advice, interviews of fellow authors, and answers to questions about writing that perhaps you never put into words. You will learn a lot about yourself by experiencing a peek into others' writing habits and styles. This is a book that can be read more than once. Here is an example of great advice from Bell's book:
1. Make a list of all the things in this world that make you mad. Write it fast. Keep going.
2. Make a list of all the things that make you feel alive, things you love.
3. Refer to these lists when you are considering your next story. How can you get one or more of these items in the tale?
Too pedantic for you? Try this:
The ancient philosopher Epicurus wrote: "Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not; remember that what you now have was once among the things you only hoped for."
In Writing Fiction for All You're Worth, James Scott Bell shows that writing is an art, a part of who we are, and that we should always strive to get better and learn from others. The more I learn about writing, the more I realize there is not one way to write a book, and that frees me to be myself and probably do it way differently.
Long ago when I was going through a difficult time in my life, I questioned, "Am I okay?" As an author, I think deep down we all deal with insecurity. This book helped me to see that all writers are a bit ecleptic and that no one way is "the way." I can relax, try new things, and disregard those that don't work. Bell writes in a way that meets my need for encouragement. Writing Fiction for all You're Worth is a great read for all authors and writers.