— Stephen King
This is such simple advice, but really, really important.
By exposing yourself to stories- all kinds of stories, from all kinds of voices, you learn. You learn what works, you learn what doesn't.
Once you take up a pen and start trying to do this for yourself, you start reading differently too. It may be a conscious thing, that you start out with a notepad handy when you read, or at the least, a highlighter (though the local library frowns on that sort of thing.)
Regardless - if you write, and keep writing, and then write some more, you can't help but start to notice things. Things that just start to hit you, like "Ah - that was a neat transition into the scene," or "Oh - so that's how he manages to get his two main characters alone in the restaurant."
|"It was the best of....zzzzzzzzzzz"|
|"And the killer is... skipskipskipskipskip"|
Lecture's over now. Here's some parting goodies:
If you haven't joined "Goodreads", give it a look. It's very much like Facebook, but focused on books. You can catalogue and rate what you've read - and that's just for starters. You can recommend books to your friends, and get the same back. (Look me up if/when you get there!)
Matt Hilton's books since I first became acquainted with him through Thrillers, Killers, n' Chillers. This week, I finished Judgement and Wrath, which is the second in the Joe Hunter series. I've always been a horror/fantasy type of reader, but after reading this one, I'll be getting my hands on the rest pretty quick. It's some of the cleanest, most fast-paced action that I've read in a long time. (You can read the rest of my review... on Goodreads) If you're unfamiliar with Matt, check out his site, and say hello! He's got the latest book in his series coming out soon, so now's the time to catch up on the rest!
Just got word that a new story of mine, "To Play with Fire" is now live on MicroHorror. I went a little outside my comfort zone on this one, and didn't shy away from the heat. (Alright - full disclosure - it's full of sex.) Check it out if you have a moment.
Keep @ 'er