• Amy Shannon


When you're a writer, being a reader is just as important, or even more important. Reading should not just be limited to entertainment, or a specific genre, but something you can also learn from.

Reading Tips:

Read a genre from multiple authors that is similar to the one you write in. Learn from someone else's writing style and perception of the genre. Learn how someone else tells their story.

Read a story that is different from your own genre. If you are a fiction writer, read non-fiction work that may relate to the subject of your story.

Read other author's works, such as someone from the "best seller list" and then read work from an author that is at the other end of that scale. (Indie authors you never heard of, or don't seem to have a lot of sales, but have a lot of books. Amazon does a ranking system of different genre, so pick one from the end of the list).

Expand your knowledge by doing research that's not just done by "Google" searches, but by reading actual books on the subject. Once upon a time there used to be hardbound Encyclopedias.

Sometimes I use my knowledge of history by having characters in my stories have similar interests. A writer knows that characters always have some piece of their creator in them, so use it more. I can share what I know and what I've learned through a character.

When you write, you also have to read your own work. Of course, it's usually for editing and proofreading (which are two different things) and for story growth or to confirm plot closures, but read it as a reader would read it. After you read it, then read it aloud. It comes out differently with vocal words than just seeing the words in your head.

No matter what format you use, don't stop reading, and encourage others to do so as well. No one was ever hurt by reading, and yes, it's true, reading is fundamental.