Monday, March 21, 2011

Meet an Author Monday!

Good morning!

Before we dive into the Monday blog hop, I have to tell you...I learned something yesterday.

I cannot write while reading others' work. Period.

Stephen King, in his wildly popular writing handbook titled, On Writing says “If you want to be a writer, you must do two things about all others: read a lot and write a lot,” writes King. “Reading is the creative center of a writer’s life. I take a book with me everywhere I go, and find there are all sorts of opportunities to dip in.”

I think he's right. Of course he's right. He's The King. You must love to read. You must take in as many books in your genre as you can.

But my goal as a writer is to turn out 2-3 full-length paranormals a year. Each one takes me 4-5 months...which leaves a few months in between to plot and outline and synopsi the next. Where in there, is there time for reading?

You'd think I could read instead of watch TV. Or read while waiting to pick my kids up from school. I thought so too...

Until yesterday.

I'm reading Monica McCarty's The Ranger. It's a Scottish Historical and IT'S FANTASTIC. I'm in her world. I'm there. But when I tried to write the epilogue for my second full-length paranormal in the Crimson Bay Series, I ended up writing in Historical style--flouncy and beautiful and artistic--when I really needed to be rough and gritty and dark. I actually love the scene. I think it's some of the best stuff I've written. But, sadly, it has to go.

I don't know what's wrong with me.

Can you read while writing? Does the style of the book you're currently reading rub off on your own writing? I'd love to hear from other writers in the hop.

Here's how it works:


Follow as many authors as you like. Just follow the Linky list and hop from author to author. The idea is to find as many "new to you" authors as you can, and hopefully some great new reading material as well. Leave a comment as you hop from blog to blog! We'd love to chat with you!


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Jennifer Lane said...

It's very difficult to squeeze reading in while writing. Heck, it's difficult to squeeze anything in while writing. I multi-task by reading on the exercise bike, but even then my progress is slow. I agree that reading is so important to my development as a writer, though.

Kristin Miller said...

Reading on an exercise bike is great. I used to do that in college and got a ton of studying in. Wish I could do that now without it affecting what comes out on paper. I guess I either have to really hone by voice and style before attempting it again, or stop reading while writing all-together and only dig away at my TBR pile between books.
Thanks for stopping by!

Anonymous said...

Interesting point! Not sure about writers, I'm a reader/reviewer, but I can see where this could happen. However, I am a huge fan of writers that actually DO read and not just say they do. I've edited some MS where you can really tell the writer is not a reader. They don't know how to tell a story and it all ends up choppy. OR, a writer decides to write in a genre they have NEVER read before to try to sell or appeal to a new set of readers. I don't like that. I have King's books as well. There's a reason he is the King, you're right. ;)Interesting post.

Anonymous said...

I never stop reading. I think I'm your opposite, though; I can't read in the genre I'm writing! Right now I'm writing an urban fantasy and reading strictly cozy mysteries. It allows me to separate the two and keep my voice if the genre is WAY off.

Reina said...

I have this problem and it's very frustrating because I love reading. I too am on the multiple ms a year plan (also with 2 little ones)so by the time I can read something, I'd rather chill watching Mark Harmon in an episode of NCIS. :) Yet my TBR list for this year grows every week...I was hoping reading out of genre would help, but I guess that didn't work for you. Wish I had the solution.

Colene Murphy said...

I can read while writing but I have to have a good amount of buffer time between the two activities. Can't go from reading a book to writing or vise versa. An afternoon or a day between the two. Maybe that can help?

Kristin Miller said...

A Tale of Many Reviews--I've never thought about it from that perspective before...but I have read writers who I don't feel have read enough in the genre in which they write. Honestly, I don't read a ton of paranormal; just sweep up as much from my favorite authors as I can.
Something to think about! And I guess I really need to up my reading ante.

Kristin Miller said...

Jujuwiz--You're right! We're absolutely opposite! I don't know how you do it!

Reina--Seems there are so many of us! Mothers, writers, midnight NCIS watchers. ;) Although I'm kinda glad to hear I'm not the only one who has the problem. If I find a solution that works for me I'll let you know. lol

Colene--That's an idea. Although once I start a book I devour it until it's through. So I guess I'd read for 3-4 days, finish the book, then write like a mad-woman until I hit a wall. That might work...
Thanks for the advice!

Nicki Elson said...

I'm a HUGE sponge and tend to mimic what others do if I'm writing while I'm reading---but I'm also a huge fan of editing, and when I'm in the editing phase of my own work, that's all I read until it's done.