I’m on a sort of writing break at the moment. I say sort of because I am writing, I’m just having a bit of trouble deciding which direction I want the story in AnnaBeth2 to go. It took a turn that I hadn’t anticipated but totally makes sense. It’s a part of the story that will carry over to the final part of the trilogy.
I’m figuring out how to integrate certain details while ratcheting up tension to move toward the end of the book. Basically, I’m spending a lot of time working through various scenarios in my head to decide which will serve the story and AnnaBeth3 the best.
While I’m on semi-hiatus, I started reading two books – Bossypants, by Tina Fey and Empire State of Mind, which is about Jay-Z but not actually written by him. The latter is like an “unauthorized” biography.
I know. Celebrity books. Gag. I can’t help it. Even though I prefer not to interact with the majority of the people around me, I still find the lives of others (strangers?) interesting. It might be a writer thing.
Reading these books (at the speed of light because I have stuff to do) has made me realize that memoirs and biographies are excellent ways to learn about creating realistic characters, especially if the goal is to give aforementioned characters a lot of depth. And memoirs are really helpful for learning about people who are nothing like you too.
For instance, let’s say I want one of my characters to be an opera singer. What the hell do I know about the motivations of such a person or their obstacles? I don’t even like opera. But if I read a Luciano Pavarotti biography or memoir, I bet I will have picked up quite a bit about both him and the opera thing by the end.
Aside from personality traits and career stuff, the reader also gets information about people around them, the culture, the time period, etc.
I’m not saying one should copy all the family and life experiences from memoirs, but spending 300+ pages in someone else’s world/head/time can be enlightening.
Hey, want some free reading? Check out the fiction freebie page on this very blog!
There you shall find links to two free ebooks on Smashwords and novel excerpts on Scribd.