Let’s Start at the Very Beginning

…a very good place to start. For a writer, that beginning must be story. It’s taken me a long time — three years to be exact — to recognize the importance of beginning in just the right place.

Honestly, I didn’t know what I didn’t know. What I did know was narrative proved difficult for me, while reporting — writing magazine articles and nonfiction for the school and library market — came easily.

This interview with Marla Frazee, which my critique partner Julie Rowan-Zoch shared with me, began my awakening. Later, I scribbled down a list of books recommended by Tracy Holczer at SCBWI-CenCal, who said everything she needed to write Secret Hum of a Daisy, she learned with her library card. Then, library card in hand and holidays looming, I started studying.

Here’s my list of books, recommended by Tracy and others, that I found helpful enough to buy so far:

On my “to read” list is ART & FEAR (David Bayles), which argues that while the Mozarts and Michaelangelos exists, most art is made by normal, hardworking artists — artists like us.

Happy reading and happy 2015 everyone!