Why reading widely won’t hurt your writing: 3 tips from Francine Prosehttps://i0.wp.com/www.writerandthewolf.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/01/Copy-of-Discovering-middle-grade-and-YA-books-in-the-library-when-you-dont-know-what-youre-looking-for-4.png?fit=1024%2C576&ssl=1 1024 576 Siobhan O'Brien Holmes Siobhan O'Brien Holmes https://secure.gravatar.com/avatar/ba3674976788a4e771f9a93e14b42805?s=96&d=mm&r=g
Author Francine Prose wrote an excellent craft book in 2006 called Reading Like a Writer and I urge you to pick up a copy if you haven’t come across it before. In chapter one she talks a little about the various excuses authors give for not wanting to read too deeply or widely while writing their own novel, and I’ve heard these excuses in writing groups so many times that I wanted to address them now for any authors nervous that other books may negatively affect their own work. TL;DR: they won’t.
1) ‘Reading amazing books make my writing look rubbish in comparison!’
I hear ya. Every time I finish a brilliant novel, after first rushing off to Goodreads to mark it ‘complete’ and give it five stars, I sit for a minute and think, ‘Well, my book is never going to be anywhere near that good. I think I’ll stop writing it.’ This defeatist attitude usually subsides after a while and is replaced with determination to at least try to write something nearly as fabulous but what if that feeling of inferiority puts you off reading altogether?read more