I used to feel that if I were reading, then I wasn’t being productive enough, wasn’t dedicating enough time to my own craft. Time spent caught up in someone else’s creation could be time spent creating my own stuff.
Then recently, I took on a small project where I’d have to read a book, an erotica anthology, and write a little review. Yes, I have to write a review, so I actually have to read the book and finish it, not like the stack of dog eared paperbacks on my nightstand and headboard.
I’m having a good time with it, though, better than I ever could have imagined. I’m flipping through the pages and seeing familiar names and smiling and becomeing enraptured all over again because these are names I knew from way back when… way back when I was crouched on my full-sized bed thinking, “Man, I wish I could do that or say that,” or “I hope that can be me one day.”
And, though I am still a bit removed from it all (it still tickles the hell out of me to see somewhere that Tenille Brown is one of the top erotic writers – say what?), I know that after all these years, I have accomplished just that, that maybe somewhere, someone is holding another book, an erotic anthology and becoming excited at the sight of my name.
While you’re just writing, submitting and in the end just hoping for the best, it’s hard to stay excited. It’s hard to remain that real person who remembers the excitement of reading a new story, a different story and not turn into that story producing maching.
So, yes, reading, for me, helps in my being able to create new/better/different stuff. As I was reading these stories I was so excited to get back to my own writing and see what I could do and say differently, how many more ways I could get my point across, what other point of views I could use… could I say this in five-hundred words or less?
I think that when I’m in that write, write, write mode, I forget to spend the time thinking of how the reader is seeing, what that readers might want to see, might want to know.
So, now that I am the reader… I get to decide if the story satisfied those questions… not a bad idea… see it from the reader’s perspective…
Anyway… almost done with the book… almost done with the review.
Ready to write.