Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Good Writing

            One of the things that brings joy to my life is reading.  Ok, ok, ok, that is a huge understatement. Reading hasn’t just brought joy to my life, it has brought healing, respite, knowledge, and at times full out escapism.
            What do I like to read? Well, I used to think I had very specific tastes and I only read self-help books and historical romance novels. As time moved on, I discovered classic literature, mysteries, thrillers and spy novels, paranormal, and most recently urban fantasy.
            The last six months I have been working for a small publishing company as a Preliminary Manuscript Reviewer. The publisher’s niche is in historical and nautical fiction. Although I love history, there are a few time periods that I don’t find interesting and tend to avoid. Also, reading a book about adventures on the high seas never registered on my “books to read” raider.
            The position requires me to read query letters, synopses, and the first two and last chapters of manuscripts and write reviews based on my first impressions. I did so with the intention of being objective and focusing on plot, characters, setting, etc. I didn’t want the “boring” subject matter to bias my opinion of the quality of writing. The process has been enlightening to say the least. I have been exposed to some awful writing and to some great writing and have learned a lot about what makes a good read. However, the most important thing I have learned is…

If the writing is good, than any genre, subject, or topic can be interesting, compelling and will always make an incredible novel.

            So regardless of what you like to read and have read for years, consider trying something new. You might be surprised by what you find. How do I get started looking for something new, you ask? Here are a few tips: Ask friends for recommendations for their favorite books or authors; check out the website Goodreads, they list the top reads for different genres; find out what your favorite authors are reading (sometimes they enjoy reading outside their own genre); and check out the classics (you know what they are). Personally, I belong to a book club and that forces me to read something I would have never chosen on my own.

Any subject can be made into a great book through good writing.

            Whether you are an avid reader or only get to read a book every once in a great while, you know that reading can enhance our lives in ways like nothing else can. Using recommendations and reviews, dipping into and exploring new genres can be easy and the benefits can make it more meaningful.

           Thanks for stopping by Meaningful Living Now and allowing me to share my ideas, thoughts, and musings with you.  Please feel free to leave a comment or question.

In love and light,