...well that's it.
i've been thinking a lot about what writers read versus what they write.
the advice all over the interwebs is clear: be well-read. be especially well-read in your genre.
and i thought i was! surely, i read more than almost anyone i know. but when i see the virtual bookshelves of some folks on goodreads or see the looooong lists of recommended titles by people on blogs or witness other writers taking on challenges like "100 books in a year," my brain goes spinny.
i have never read 100 books in a year. i'm lucky to read a dozen in a single summer, when i cram in the most reading.
and because my reading time is limited (and therefore precious), i confess to reading more of the genres i DON'T write in than the one i do. why? because i enjoy them more.
for me, the best books to lose myself in are Dystopian or Paranormal. they are nothing like what i write, so i give myself permission to just enjoy them - not look at them with a critical eye or compare them to what i'm writing. immersing myself in someone else's made-up world is the greatest form of entertainment.
but i get much more excited writing contemporary teenagers in real-world situations. i like to think, when i write, this could actually be happening to someone somewhere right now.
so it's surprising to me that i don't like reading contemp YA as much. i've certainly read a lot more of it since i started writing it, but i admit that is partly because i am following the excellent advice of others who say to be well-read in your genre - and not because those books actually jumped off the shelf at me.
granted, i have discovered some luscious stories this way and now have many favorites in the contemporary YA genre that i otherwise would not have read. but still, when i walk into a bookstore, i am drawn to the shelves stocked with fantastical beasts and imaginary places. no matter what i write, these books will always be the ones i want to read.
i'm curious to know whether this is true for other authors as well. any of you sci-fi writers out there die-hard fans of a good romance? any horror writers whose favorite books are westerns? and why do you think that is?