Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Writing Tips

If you're a writer and you're not reading David Farland's Writing Tips (affectionately known as his Daily Kick in the Pants), then you should. Better yet, subscribe to his newsletter. Some installments apply more directly than others to whichever project I happen to be working on, but each is a little piece of genius.

The one that comes to mind immediately (and the one that cemented me in as a regular reader) is called "Analyzing Your Novel's Audience" where he breaks down key elements found in the 20 bestselling novels of all time.

He pulls out the similarities from their settings, characters, conflicts, emotional beats, themes, etc. and virtually screams, "Why aren't we all doing this?"

Okay, okay. Maybe that's what I hear. You might hear something completely different. Plain and simple, though. Why? It's a different way of thinking for me and will take some practice, but practice it I will.

And in case you're wondering what he lists those top 20 bestselling novels are:

A Tale of Two Cities Charles Dickens
The Lord of the Rings J.R.R. Tolkien
And Then There Were None Agatha Christie
The Hobbit J.R.R. Tolkien
She H. Rider Haggard
The Catcher in the Rye J.D. Salinger
The Alchemist Paulo Coelho
The Da Vinci Code Dan Brown
The Name of the Rose Umberto Eco
Harry Potter / Deathly Hallows J.K. Rowling
Jonathon Livingston Seagull Richard Bach
To Kill a Mockingbird Harper Lee
Valley of the Dolls Jacqueline Susann
Gone with the Wind Margaret Mitchell
One Hundred Years of Solitude Gabriel García Márquez
The Godfather Mario Puzo
Jaws Peter Benchley
Shōgun James Clavell
The Pillars of the Earth Ken Follett
Perfume Patrick Süskind
The Horse Whisperer Nicholas Evans

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