Watching Like a Writer

When I first started to try to buckle down to make writing a Real Thing I Do, I bought a bunch of books about writing. Some of them were good, some were kind of silly. Many of them recommended that I read books in my genre with an analytical eye, and even try to break them down for myself into the standard parts of a plot, so I could see how others did it. This was a recommendation that invariably annoyed me, because I was a reader long before I was a writer (elementary school book-writing efforts notwithstanding), and as a reader, I can’t do anything but lose myself in a book. Like, really lose myself. I can’t read when my children are around, because they could set themselves on fire and I might not notice. I’m a deep reader, is what I’m saying. So I’ve always found it impossible to draw back from the consumption of the book as a reader to try to analyze it as a writer, which has made my attempt to learn how to write better occasionally frustrating.

Continue reading Watching Like a Writer