Room for Improvement.
Have you ever sat there after a major accomplishment and thought, okay, what next? How can I improve?
It’s not that I’m a perfectionist (I wish) but I always have this sense that things could be better. I do know that perfection is impossible, especially with anything related to art endeavors, but I am one of those “7 habits”, “Good to great” type person who love to sit and ponder how I can do better just about everything in my life.
Naturally I tend to fail miserably because my nice little “perfect” schedule never really work in practice, but I do try.
So with writing, I do feel I accomplished something major in my life by writing my first novel, submitting it and competing in the American Title which saw me published for the first time. But as soon as the book hit the shelves last week, my first thought was, how can I do this better? Not the publishing journey of course because we have no control over that, but the writing.
So I started to brainstorm. I do hate to practice writing through writing prompt and I have been forever postponing doing the exercises at the end of John Gardner’s book The Art of Fiction, because they are so far away from the kind of world I usually dream about. But besides writing another book, then another, then another, which I am already doing how else can I learn?
I’ve noticed that I stopped reading recently. I’m not sure why. Maybe, I’ve spent too much time on the web. But reading, really, is where we learn from others, isn’t it? Either by absorbing the prose, getting through enough similar stories to get a feel for the plot, or by blatantly studying our favorite writers. Bob Mayer does a scene analysis; James Scott Bell copies the prose of his favorite writers to get a feel for the writing.
Myself, I decided to just read more of what I like regardless of genre (I am currently reading one of Eloisa James’ Desperate Duchesses novel) and start to study the latest RITA nominees debut book (I just ordered Kelly Gay debut paranormal The Better Part of Darkness) All this of course, while I attack my next project!
I would like to giveaway to a lucky commenter a signed copy of ANCIENT WHISPERS, so please tell me, which writer inspires you most to be a better person? Strangely perhaps, I would say that for me, it’s been the late Robert B. Parker. Now how about you?
Marie-Claude Bourque is the American Title V winner and author of ANCIENT WHISPERS, a sensual gothic paranormal romance filled with sorcerers and Celtic priestesses in search for eternal love in modern time. She worked as a climate research scientist, a scientific translator and a fitness expert until she turned to fiction writing. She draws her inspiration from the French legends of her childhood and a fascination for dark fantasy.
ANCIENT WHISPERS, a Dorchester –Love Spell release is available now wherever books are sold. Find more at www.mcbourque.com and don’t forget to enter the contest for her month-long virtual release party at www.mcbourque.com/launchparty