Like most authors, I read. A lot. I confess in college that my degree entailed more writing that reading: a journalism major seemed to drive this. I swear I only dimly remember reading classics such as Catch 22, The Scarlett Letter and To Kill a Mocking Bird. And I keep meaning to read any classic book I find “free” for Kindle as a start. But apparently my subconscious mind is driving my library. My current reading has suddenly begun to narrow. It is now within my own genre. I think this happened when I started doubting my first book and thus I now have terrible writer’s block. I am about 125 pages into the sequel and completely stuck. I’ve had friends and relatives insist my first novel is good/held attention/etc. One has compared me to Evanovich! But it wasn’t until someone I didn’t know said it was good, that I sincerely felt that just maybe, it was. Reading books in my genre reinforced that: I am seeing techniques that I read aren’t traditional, or amateurish, or unprofessional being used by authors that are very well received and even award winning. For example, I “get into a character’s head” by writing thoughts in italics, and I frequently change POV. I am seeing this more and more in contemporary novels. I also see fast dialogue with very few speaker identifications (fewer he said, she saids).
I am not sure what my cure will be for this purgatory but I am sure eventually it will end. In the meantime the muses are laughing in disgust. I hear them at night when I contemplate opening my Word file. The one started in June of 2007. Sigh.
Frankly I would love to hire a certain editor, but I am just not there yet financially. I hope she waits for me! launchpadmedia.com/