Reading Like a Writer

Published May 7, 2013 by Elsa Pla
Romantic Pier in Old San Juan

Romantic Pier in Old San Juan

I finished reading Reading Like a Writer –A Guide for People Who Love Books and for Those Who Want to Write Them by Francine Prose, and I strongly recommend it. Prose not only explains how to read like a writer — she breaks down the close-reading process into categories of purpose, and she models each one. Plus she includes a useful and diverse reading list.

I made my own close-reading checklist based on her table of contents:

Analyze the Author’s:

1- Word Choice

2- Use of Rhetorical Devices

3- Sentence Structure

4- Paragraphing

5- Use of Narration

6- World (& Mood) Building

7- Characterization

8- Use of Dialogue

9- Use of Details

10- Description of Gestures

11- Revelations of Themes and Messages

12- Writing Journey

I plan to continue analyzing the writing of authors whose style I admire. Right now I’m studying the work of Sonya Hartnett (Thursday’s Child, The Ghost’s Child, Surrender, The Midnight Zoo, and others).

I end the post with three motivational quotes:

“Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.” Maya Angelou

“It is the journey that matters in the end.” Ursula Le Guin

“Little by little, one travels far.” J.R.R. Tolkien

Let’s keep writing! 🙂

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