Something magical happens when I’m reading analytically. I’m jolted by bursts of insight and inspiration for my own writing. Because I’ve seen the power of reading for myself, I advise other writers to create their own reading list for whatever projects they’re working on.
If you’re looking for inspiration on an element of craft, such as dialogue or structure, read how another writer pulled it off. One of the mind-altering effects of studying for an MFA came from reading and analyzing so much literature. Even reading stories that had nothing to do with my memoir sparked ideas for my own writing.
Here are several tips for creating a reading list:
Read books from multiple genres. If you’re writing a memoir, read fiction, memoirs, and poetry. Reading poetry helped me raise my consciousness of words and meaning. This carried over into my prose and spurred me to write poetry of my own. Read more