I was totally spying on people. All day long. It was very productive and I found out a lot of things. Probably about you. And now I’m going to write them all down for my next novel. And perhaps memoir.

Lance Larsen came and spoke to my class and it was wonderful. He gave six tips for creativity. The first one is to READ. To read and read and read and read and read. Not just in your genre, not just in your discipline, but to read widely. To let yourself see what others have done, to open up to possibilities you could never have imagined.

Here is a quote by Saul Bellow:

“A writer is a reader moved to emulation.” 

What do you think of this quote? Lance talked about how some people are worried they will end up copying others so they don’t read anything and thus they don’t change, they don’t push themselves, they don’t get to see anything new. 

Do you agree? Disagree? If you are marathon burned out, pick up a new book. A different book.  A mystery (if you don’t read mysteries), a classic (if it’s been years), a stack of picture books (if you don’t have small children) and read something. See if it sparks an idea. 

I’ll tell you another tip later. I hope you are all having happy writing days. I am doing the best I can and making some headway. Some. And I’m glad for that.


Oh and one more quote from Saul Bellow:

“One thought-murder a day keeps the psychiatrist away.”



by | March 23, 2013 · 10:37 am

3 responses to “

  1. Rebecca Birkin

    This is great advice, and makes me look forward to hearing him speak at WIFYR this June. What are some of his other tips?

  2. sueburton

    “A writer is a reader moved to emulation” — so true! Sometimes I pick up a novel and can’t read for all the writing it stimulates–not copying, just ideas.

  3. Do we get the other 5 next time?

    I’m afraid if you spied on me your book will be boring and brief.


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