Tuesday, December 7, 2010

9 Dragons by Michael Connelly

Today I finished 9 Dragons by Michael Connelly as a part of my Learn to Write by Reading Project.

The book jacket described the book as a mystery thriller.  A term I wasn't aware existed.  But it was a good description. 

I have read praise of Connelly's protagonist, Harry Bostch, which put him in the same league as Lee Child's Jack Reacher.  When I learned that Bostch was a police detective, I thought to myself.  I'm not sure I'm going to like this.  (I don't usually like the police procedural genre.)  But, I was very pleasantly surprised.  It was a great story and Harry is a great character.

I also re-started writing Bon Secour.  My NaNoWriMo break lasted a week not counting the last ten days of November when I wasn't on break but didn't write either.  Managed a paltry 602 words.  But, I was sitting and writing.  Yeah!

I started a style exercise based on John Hart's Edgar Award winning novel, The Last Child.  What I am doing is copying a scene from the book.  Then breaking it down to identify the goal, conflict and climax of the scene.  To pick up on which emotions and which senses are called on in each scene.

I studied painting for about ten years.  The artist I most wanted to paint like was Richard Schmidt.  I studied techniques by copying the paintings of artist's I admired.  I got good at copying, but I never even got close to being able to copy one of Schmidt's paintings. 

If I could wave a wand and be able to imitate any one's writing style it would be Hart's.  When I compare some of the scenes I wrote during NaNoWriMo to The Last Child, I cringe.  His style is so different from mine.  I'll never be able to write like him.  But maybe I can grow in that direction.

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