Tuesday, April 18, 2006

On the Dangers of Reading Dickens

I am currently making my way through "David Copperfield," and in doing so, have noticed, in both my writing and my speech, a sudden urge towards the loquacious; an insatiable need to express in many words what could best be said in few; and worse, the willingness, indeed, the desire, to so so at a moment's notice upon any person unfortunate enough to venture the idea of beginning a conversation. In short...

I'm talking too damn much.

It's a habit I fall into, to write like the books I am reading. My first novel (which will never see the light of day) sounded like Heinlien, Hambly, Cherryh and Stephen King had created as bastard love-child by tossing out bits on similar themes that they didn't like and having them accidently land in the same pile.

I've improved, of course. Every writer finds their own voice eventually, and I think I've found mine, but I need to be careful. When I read a good book, the old tendencies kick in and I'll find myself writing in the style I'm reading instead of my own.

It does make the editing fun, though. I can remember where I was in my library when I was writing a particular chapter.

Speaking of which...

Back to work

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