As a new author with her first novel out, I spend a lot of time continually learning and growing so the following work will be even stronger. As with anything in life, practice makes perfect (or close enough to perfect while still being human). Writing is no exception. The more we write, the better writers we become. And the more we read, the stronger grasp we'll have on the craft.
Recently, I've had a huge brain fart. If that's a good thing, because this lightbulb-moment is a good thing, huge for me. Now, what to do about it. What was the discovery, you ask? I'll tell you.
As most writers do, I read a lot. I read what I love, but I also step outside that box and dip into new adventures. Being part of a book club helps with this as we can't pick and choose what we read. Anyway, back to my "discovery". In my reading a new favorite author (Jill Mansell), I found that I'm completely taken with not just her stories, but with her style of writing. She bravely allows her personality to play a starring role in her characters lives. In particular, I love her humor!
The big difference between her writing and mine (besides the fact she's written MANY novels and I'm on my second) is she's (fearlessly) clearly comfortable with her style. In reading her wonderful work, I've discovered that I've found my style, but haven't completely let it shine through. Not even my humor, which is very similar to Ms. Mansell's. I've done well, but know I've held back, mostly out of my trepidation as a new author. But not anymore! I get it! Let go and be me, bravely. I get it!
I'm happy to say that as I continue through this journey as a budding author, and as I learn so much every day and with every experience, I'm getting stronger and braver. It's not that I haven't been true to myself in my writing up to this point, I'd say it's more a matter of holding back a bit, unsure how to let go. Finally, I see the light.
We, fellow writers, must always be taking a close look into ourselves and overcome our fears so we can blossom into the flowers (or for males, the . . . I don't know, something masculine) we are meant to become. Be true to ourselves, true to our own individual writing style.
So, be brave, ask questions constantly, and never stop learning, changing and growing.
Happy writing and reading!