Saturday, January 11, 2014

To tell good stories, you have to read good stories

All my life, I've heard the adage that good writers are good readers. I suppose that's true. But I want to add something to that. I think it's more than just reading a lot. I think it's also about reading a lot of good stories.

There's a difference between a story and a good story. A good story is all about sucking you in with characters that make you feel what they fell, breathe in the world that they breathe in, and want the things they want. A good story is all about a plot that carries you along in a way that makes you want to stay up late reading because you can't bear to close the covers without knowing what happens next. A good story is one that changes the way you think, the way you look at the world. A good story is once in a lifetime.

I say once in a lifetime, but I don't mean that there aren't hundreds or thousands of good stories running around out there, just waiting to be plucked off bookshelves. Because there are. You just have to fall into your niche and find them. I myself love young adult and the classics. That's where my good stories come from. Every now and then I'll find a good one in adult fiction, but most of those come from historical fiction like Phillipa Gregory's works. You can find a good story just about anywhere. You can even find them in fanfiction.

So, here are some places to look if you're wondering what a good story looks like.

  1. The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien
  2. Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone by J.K. Rowling
  3. Timeline by Michael Crichton
  4. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
  5. Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead
  6. Death Du Jour by Kathy Reichs
  7. A Certain Slant of Light by Laura Whitcomb
  8. Carrie by Stephen King
  9. The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson
Jump in. Find some good stories. Read a lot of them. Reading good stories will teach you how to tell good stories. And isn't that what every author wants to do?

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Edited by - Stephanie King