Posted by: penpatience | September 1, 2016

READ FIRST! WRITE SECOND!

DSCF1589KIDS READING PHOTO-AUGUST2016 FOR MUSING

WRITERS WORDS: “Whatever it is you write, putting words on a page is a form of therapy that doesn’t cost a dime.” – Diana Rabb

 

SEPTEMBER 2016 MONTHLY MUSING

READ FIRST!  WRITE SECOND!

I learned from my mother at a very young age the importance and joy of reading. Her wise words, “if you can read, you can learn and do anything.” Always, in our home, there were books—all kinds of books. I grew up with the Collier’s Encyclopedia (no internet then:), Junior Classics, children’s books they now call “YA” or Young Adult.  Mysteries and Zane Grey paperbacks hung out on living room end tables, bookmarks in place. Library loaned books were carried back and forth, read and returned. Over time, I became a proliferate reader of fiction, non-fiction, essays, college texts and introduced and read Dr. Seuss, nursery rhymes and kid’s books to my three children. I have always believed the more you read, the better you write with reading an important precursor of becoming a good writer.

Stephen King, one of my favorite authors, states in one of his best-selling books, “On Writing:”  “If you want to be a writer you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot…..every book you pick up has its own lesson or lessons, and quite often the bad books have more to teach than the good ones……..and we read in order to experience different styles.”

The craft of writing is no different than other crafts. We read recipes and follow directions before cooking a new and untried entrée. We read instructions on electronic and household purchases before we activate them. We read texts and training manuals, online and in print, to learn and apply new skills necessary to remain employable in various job markets. When writers sit down to write, I believe that subliminal information from previously read materials becomes incorporated and reflected in writer prose. Vocabulary usage is expanded, story ideas are formulated, grammar and punctuation is emulated from well-written, edited publications. Prior readings are often the catalyst for  inspirational ideas that bloom inside writer minds at unexpected times and occasions.

Reading to improve the writing process is an ongoing endeavor. Over time, I’ve read many writing craft books and publications that I’ve found helpful in improving my writing projects.  I share them with readers and writers as valuable tools in crafting future writings:

“On Writing”  – Stephen King; “Fire Up Your Fiction”  – Jodie Renner; “On Writing Well”  – William Zinsser; “On Becoming a Novelist” – John Gardner; Self-Editing for Fiction – Renni Browne and Dave King; “Bird by Bird” – Anne Lamott; “Super Structure-The Key to Unleashing the Power of Story, “27 Fiction Blunders and how not to make them, “Just Write –(3) books by James Scott Bell; “Structuring Your Novel-Essential Keys for Writing an Outstanding Story – K.M. Weiland

Writer Magazines: 

The Writer’s Digest
Poets & Writers
 The Writer

HAPPY READING AND WRITING!

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Responses

  1. Very nice
    Quite true one cannot be s good writer unless you read and read a lot.

    Like


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