Monday, October 26, 2015

Don't just read, reread

It's a common question, do you ever reread books? Most people who say no do so with the excuse there's too many books out there to read the same books over again. However, if you're a writer you're reading not just to enjoy the story along the way in the back of your mind you're probably noting things that annoy you maybe ways the story could be better. If it's really good though all you're doing is reading, so caught up in the story you couldn't careless about sentence structure or how the dialogue is smooth and real. It's those stories that you should be rereading. Those stories will allow you to see where you could be doing better, maybe even show you your own strengths and assuring yourself so you can focus on the other areas where you need work. Just like an athlete will watch game tapes to see an alternate view of their performance once you know how the story ends you'll be able to see all the things you didn't before. 

I've been rereading since I started reading, mainly because I didn't understand everything as I was too young to understand. Then I started reading Shakespeare and I had to read again and again and again to first understand then to enjoy. Even now there are books I go back to for sheer pleasure and others to learn from, moving them from state to state not even considering leaving them behind. Those books, they aren't the classics either, they are the everyday mystery, thriller, and romances I read for pure pleasure and want to write. I have read the classics some I enjoyed others felt like pure torture I honestly can't say I'm a better writer for having read them and I really don't care if it would make me a better writer, they aren't what I want to read or write so I'm not going to reread them. I'll stick to what I want to write. 

I'm not about to suggest rereading is the only way to be a better writer but really what better way to pass the day? Are there really no books out there that were so good you wouldn't enjoy one more time?

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