Friday, December 4, 2009
Best of 2009 Blog Challenge, Day 4: Book
The book that stands out to me most this year is See Jane Write: A Girl's Guide to Writing Chick Lit. I'm not a big fan of non-fiction usually, and I rarely ever read books giving advice--much less advice on writing. I've always been a big believer in trusting your own instincts. As long as you are an avid reader of the genre you are attempting to write in, then I feel as though you can tell what will and will not work.
But I was recommended this book by several people, so I thought it couldn't hurt. And while I'm not turned onto reading non-fiction or advice books, I thoroughly enjoyed this one. I loved the idea of a chick lit author and editor writing it together. It's like having two opposing views that are actually working towards the same thing. It was a cutesy style that was enjoyable and actually helpful at the same time. I also enjoyed the graphs and visual ways they gave advice as to how to write a typical chick lit book. It was interesting to see things laid out that way. I'm not necessarily a visual writer, but it always helps to have visual graphics to enhance the words.
Probably the biggest help in the book was the list of chick lit books and authors provided in the back, whether it was plain recommendation or an example/contributor to the content of See Jane Write. I'd read about half of the books on the list, but it definitely made me think towards the style and order in which things were written.
So, the way that it changed me was actually that it made me doubt that I wanted to write a chick lit novel for NaNoWriMo! Interesting influence, I know, but it's how it happened. It kind of made me see what exactly chick lit was and what goes into it. While I always knew what it entailed since I read that genre most often, I also got to see the "superficial" ways of the writing and the little tricks to it (gay best friend? Yep). One day I may attempt it, but my writing vernacular is not up to the task today.
I know it's kind of weird that the book most memorable to me in 2009 is one that actually turned me off from it's subject, but I guess that's how it made me remember it. Likewise to all who told me, I definitely recommend for anyone considering chick lit.