Reading and Writing
I have finally gotten back to creative writing. Nothing huge, just some fooling around, but the mere act of writing has become so all-encompassing that I can think about little else these days. While copying and pasting at work, I’m working out a plot line in my head. Chatting with friends, I’m bursting with sitcom ideas, some of them good, some of them silly.
And, whenever I can sneak away and write upstairs for a few hours, my husband invariably comes in and asks what I’m doing, occasionally trying to read over my shoulder. I’m sure he totally appreciates me slamming my laptop shut and throwing myself at him, yelling, “STOP LOOKING IF I TELL YOU I’LL NEVER FINISH.”
(Does anyone else find this? That talking about what you’re writing destroys some sort of fragile magic that you’re weaving? Talking about writing doesn’t do it, but talking specifics somehow sucks the life out of everything that I’m doing.)
Anyway, so while I have been reading, the reading I’ve been doing has been so different. Instead of sort of floating along and letting the story take me, I’m deeply reading every word, parsing sentence construction and flow and evaluating dialogue to see if it really sounds natural, or if it just sounds like something someone would say in a book (and if it’s the latter, is that bad, in this context?).
My solution has been to immerse myself in nonfiction and graphic novels for pleasure reading, and to really only delve into fiction when I have the time and energy to devote to analyzing it. But this can’t go on forever, and I find myself kind of torn between the fiction I love reading and the fiction I feel compelled to write.
Does anyone else find this? How do you all find writing impacts your reading habits? What do you do about it?