Read any good books lately? How do you read? Are you a speed reader? Skimming the pages, eager to get to the end? Or does it take you a long time to read a book?
I’m a lazy reader. I don’t read properly. I skim words I don’t understand or pronounce. Mr D’Aubigne becomes simply Mr D. As a writer this is bad. I could be missing fresh new words.
I challenge you to pick up a book and really read it. Don’t skim, read every word and use a dictionary for every word you don’t understand. Sound out the words you can’t pronounce.
Is the book in the first person or the third? The first person is when a book it written as if it is about the author himself – I went to the shops. The third person – she went to the shops.
I makes it more personal and NOW. But the author can only know about other characters in the book if the “I” person knows about them. Using she or “Jon”, for instance, and the author has more scope to write about other characters.
Look how the author deals with VP (view point) or description. How does he or she fit in the boring back-story about Andy losing contact with his mum thus finding female relationships hard? How does the author make the characters so alive?
Study your chosen book. Analyse it. See how the author doesn’t bombard you with description or blocks of black ink.
Read, read, read. Then study, study, study.