Write On Right Now!: Writing what we read- Writing Prompts & Exercises to Get You Writing Now!

Write On Right Now!

Once upon a time there was a girl who wanted to write. And that would be me. I've moved my journal about my writing life over to LiveJournal http://susanwrites.livejournal.com This blog will be filled with writing prompts and exercises so we can all write on right now! Please feel free to share your favorites.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Writing what we read

I don't read adult fiction. There, I've said it and there's no taking it back. I try, and once in a while make it through a whole book but it is no more than one or two novels a year, compared to 50-100 or more children's books a year.

I write YA and middle grade and picture books. When I read, I devour YA and middle grade and picture books. I go in spurts where I want to read a lot of books along the same lines of what I am working on. When I am working on the book in letter format, I read tons of those. I have a huge stack of ghost books to read when I want to get in the mood to work on the ghost book.

I don't know if I can separate out that I read books for kids because I write books for kids or I write books for kids because I read them. I mean, adult books just don't interest me. Correction, most adult fiction doesn't interest me. Adult books will often (and I am aware I am making huge generalizations here) often tell me who and what but kid's books tell me why. I read books for kids because, inside, I am not a grownup. I don't wanna be one. Inside I am still a 12-year-old girl who is always asking why and never getting any answers. So I write books for kids to answer those questions and I read books for kids because they give me hope that I'm not weird, that someone else really does feel the same I do, has the same fears and hopes. To me there is much distance when I read adult fiction and less distance in a good children's book. Though I miss out on things in a lot of children's books that others call good because if I can't relate or care about the character, nothing else in the story matters to me.

I also think I read kid's books because the character is often hurting in some way, and my inner child is still hurting in a lot of ways, so there is instant identification. Since I don't feel like a grownup I can't relate to the grownup stories the same way.

I also read for what my mind cannot provide. That's where I read a lot of adult non-fiction. I adore adult non-fiction, but adult fiction, well, it is very easy for me to put the book down and walk away from it.

Like all rules for writing, I think you have to take what works for you and discard the rest. However, if you have a niggling feeling that you should try something new, play with it, but don't hold yourself hostage to it. Above all, writing to me is an exploration of not always what I know, but what I want to know more about.

Write on, right now.
Susan

2 Comments:

At Wednesday, May 18, 2005, Blogger Kim said...

Great post! Lately, I've been embarrassed to take my YA books to the gym with me to read when I work out. I finally decided that I really don't need to explain my reasons for reading YA. And, if people want to laugh, let them. As I told my friend today when I bought another $59 worth of kids' books (this week's total is now over $115), I could have worse addictions!

Thanks for visiting my blog! It really means so much to me that published people are reading what I'm writing. Even though I don't really know any of these bloggers I adore, (you were added to my blogroll today. Did you notice? ;-) I finally feel like I am surrounded by people who support me and who can help me navigate this bumpy writing road. Thanks!

 
At Thursday, May 19, 2005, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for stopping by my blog! I've added yours to my "favorites" bookmarks. I, too, don't read adult fiction anymore - there are too many great YA and MG novels out there to devour. Happy Writing!
Debbi Michiko Florence

 

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