Wednesday, April 25, 2007

We're zooming to May!

Can you believe how quickly April flew by? I half-expected it to move just as slowly as March. For me, March was a perfect month. April has been too fast.

But one good thing, spring is here. The birds and the flowers and the sunshine! I am loving it.

Lots to keep me busy around here. The fiction work continues in earnest. I've been reading again in Jane Smiley's "13 Ways of Looking at the Novel" and soaking up Jane's descriptions of her reading 100 novels in 3 years time. Doesn't that just sound fantastic? It can be done. Once May sweeps are over that is. I plan to read this summer just like I did as a kid in summers. When I'd clear off entire shelves of books in the library and have them mostly done by that evening. Those were the days. Draped sidways across a wingback chair, a pile of books at your side, just reading and reading.

Reading is so important for fiction writers too. I hear horror stories of aspiring novelists who say they've not picked up a novel in a decade. It almost makes me want to run and hide. Don't fall for that purist trap. You will never publish if you do not also read and read voraciously. Poetry, plays, novels, non-fiction, cereal boxes.

A writer does not write from an empty space in one's head. It comes from literature. It comes from cultural literacy, knowing about things that can only be found in books. It comes from dreaming through another person's creation. It comes from being swept off to another world often and quickly.

Don't be a purist. Read and read well.

Keep Moving Forward.

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