Hi Fellow Writers
Okay I have a story. It’s a friend of a friend of a friend, kind of story, so there was this big-shot writer, maybe it was Neil Gaiman or Ray Bradbury (Don’t ask because I forgot) and after a reading at a big-shot gala he saw some woman copying out one of his well-known books, word by word. So he goes up to her and asks “Why are you copying out one of my books?”
She looked up at him and said “Because I want to know what it’s like to write a masterpiece.”
Man, that’s a real line right here, if you want to be instant-pals with your favourite writer, that’s the kind of thing to say (not that I recommend stalking them, while copying out their book, though if you do, please film it, I want to watch). But this story is also Aesopic, if you want to write like the masters, know them.
Novice painters will often hang out in galleries just painting the paintings before them. Writers can too. We remember things by writing, and by writing our masters, we pick up more on the nuances, the choice of words, that we wouldn’t be able to by reading.
Find your favourite paragraph, of your favourite book, and just write it out. You can tack it on your daily word-count if it’s a drab sort of day and you don’t feel writerly. Don’t worry it’s not cheating as you are learning and it’s still writing.
By a fellow writer