For some time now, I’ve had trouble getting back to reading…and enjoying the books. I’m not sure if it’s because I’ve become critical as a writer or I’m pre-occupied with so many other things. And since I’m having problems reading, I’m also having problems writing. Reading helps me learn the craft of writing by seeing what other authors do—and don’t do. When I decided to become a writer, I wanted to be a great writer, not one who writes because a story popped into my head and wrote it with little regard for the writing itself.
I’m 74 pages, and 37,875 words into my current WIP, and BAM!, I’m at a loss. I don’t know where my book is headed…it’s tough. When I wrote Net Switch during NaNoWriMo, I didn’t have a problem—the story pretty much wrote itself. Of course the story is different from the original draft, but at least I had the entire story written. This time, blank, and I’ve even created a few documents for organization, Cast of Characters and Chapters and Synopsis. This time around my chapters have names, so I’ve run into a writing block with that, too. I’m aggravated, and sometimes infuriated that the words aren’t flowing the way they used to. It’s more like Writer’s Rage than Writer’s Block; the more I think about it, the angrier I get.
Other writers claim that they just continue writing during writer’s block, and in time, the story will catch up and find itself. But I’m too wary to continue. I don’t want to have to rewrite pages…then again, that will happen anyways. My Love suggested doing a Brain Map. I write down my book in the middle of a page, circle it and then make extended lines with things about the book—about the characters—about the storyline. Sometimes several are needed to get the juices flowing. So far, I’ve done one and it hasn’t sparked any ideas.
I’ve come to the conclusion that my writing issues are connected with my reading issues. I’ve enjoyed a few books this past year, but so many, traditional and self-published have failed for me. Either the story wasn’t good, they told more than showed, created bland characters, the plot was predictable, or the writing and editing itself was bad. But I haven’t given up! To write, I must read, and to read, I must learn and enjoy, right? Yesterday, I ordered books from Amazon that I’ve been VERY interested in reading.
The first book I plan to read is Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys. The synopsis reminds me of The Book Thief, which I loved, and it was written by a Lithuanian, so I gotta support part of my heritage. The other books I ordered were The Winter Garden by Kristin Hannah, and Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire. I hope these books will help me enjoy books again and bring me back to writing.
What are you currently reading? What book do you really want to read but haven’t gotten to it yet?
Reading and Writing,Bea