Final July #WriteMotivation Update

Header image and thumbnail photograph by Hugh Lee and licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0.

Header image and thumbnail photograph by Hugh Lee and licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0.

1) Finish August Buzz articles by July 13.

2) Read 1 book a week.
And this past week has been:
The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
Heartless by Gail Carriger
The Writer’s Journey by Christopher Vogler
Graceling by Kristin Cashore

The Shadow of the Wind is interesting because it’s not the kind of book I usually read. It’s more along the lines of literary historical fiction, taking place as it does in Barcelona over the course of about 10 years right after World War II. And it took me quite awhile to finish, in a large part because it’s not what I’m used to.

That being said, Ruiz Zafon has some absolutely beautiful language, an artful way of phrasing things so that you can feel the ideas and emotions he’s trying to get across. That’s what I admired most about this story: the use of language.

In this manner, secretly, the Fortuny family let the years go by, silencing their hearts and their souls to the point where, from so much keeping quiet, they forgot the words with which to express their real feelings and became strangers living under the same roof, like so many other families in the vast city. –p. 129

“Look, Daniel. Destiny is usually just around the corner. Like a thief, a hooker, or a lottery vendor: its three most common personifications. But what destiny does not do is home visits. You have to go for it.” –p. 225

She wandered off into the shadows, carrying her bucket and dragging her shadow like a bridal veil.  –p. 252

It just resonates with you, makes you pause your reading and actually consider what he’s saying, reading the sentences again and again to make sure you suck all the meaning out of them.

Reading The Shadow of the Wind reminded me that it’s a good thing to branch out of my normal genres. Each genre has its own style, language, and tropes, some of which you’d never know if you didn’t dip your toe into the pool occasionally. And the more you read, the more you can bring those disparate tropes and styles into your own stories and give them a twist that may not have occurred to you otherwise.

The Writer’s Journey was also well worth reading. One of these days I’ll make up a list of best books for writers, which ones are good to read at least once and which ones you should own and read over and over.

3) Update blog twice a week.
Done and done, and I usually managed to make it three times a week.

And now, I’m going to enjoy some #writemotivation cookies and rest up for August and Camp NaNo.

Hope July was just as good for you guys!

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13 comments on “Final July #WriteMotivation Update

  1. Good job, Michelle! You seriously kicked butt this month. 😀 Way to go. I’m still in shock that this month is over! Ack! 😀

  2. Becca says:

    You are a reading FIEND. Damn! 🙂 Nicely done with your goals.

    • thebnc says:

      I will go a couple of months without reading, and then I will just go nuts doing nothing else for a few weeks. Usually I do it in December, right after the stress of NaNo when all I want to do is fall into someone else’s world for awhile.

  3. Congrats on meeting all your goals! Hope we can keep cheering each other on! YAY for completion!

    Come on over for some cookies! 😀

  4. Viklit says:

    Congrats on your goals!

  5. congrats on your goals! i loved shadow of the wind for some the same reasons. it IS great to stretch our literary mind occasionally.

    • thebnc says:

      Oh yay! I had never heard of it before my grandmother gave it to me (every time I visit her, I walk away with a bag of food and a bag of books), but when I finally sat down to read it I was really impressed.

      Plus, about 2/3 of the way through, there was a “Wait, WHAT?” cliffhanger at the end of a chapter that grabbed me and I didn’t quit reading till I’d finished. Really good book and really beautiful writing.

  6. Great work! You definitely deserve those cookies!

    *~MAJK~*

  7. […] night a traveler by Italo Calvino Twilight by Stephenie Meyer Ready Player One by Ernest Cline The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon City of Bones by Cassandra Clare The Moon is a Harsh Mistress by Robert Heinlein The Alloy of Law […]

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