On the Shoulders of Giants

The most important asset of a fiction writer is his or her passion for stories. It motivates us to spend hours forging the tools and fine tuning the skills needed for our craft. The drive to write allows us to bounce back from rejection, set aside a failed project and start something new. The love of art helps us through editing passes that make our eyes want to bleed. It is the storyteller’s passion that pushes us to dig for material in the everyday and transform those experiences into adventure and mystery.

The life cycle of a writer is similar to that of any other artist. The fan develops an appreciation for the art and begins to experiment. The experimenter realizes how much there is to learn and begins to study. The student gains knowledge and experience and becomes a professional. The professional continues to develop, growing and working, and every so often becomes a master. It is the love of art that first begets the artist. The writer, therefore, is born from the passion of the reader.

I love stories and consume new material at a prodigious rate despite an incredibly busy work and personal life. Since I learned to read, books have been my companions and teachers, shelter and distractions in hard times as well as being reflections of my own hopes and dreams. As I have grown in my own craft, I have trained myself to read, listen and watch critically, and in so doing take a peek at the clockwork within. I seek to learn the tricks, absorb the skills and learn to spot the pitfalls of those who have come before. In so doing, I stand on the shoulders of giants and feel very short.

And yet, as I learn and gain experience, I grow marginally taller.

Over the next twenty weeks, I will explore my writer’s journey through the men and women who inspired my own growth, both in art and business. Welcome to the fourth sequence of In Brief: On the Shoulders of Giants.


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