Whenever I sit down and I read a really good book, I think I want to be someone else. There are days where I want to be Duane, Ray Banks, Al Guthrie, or Laura Lippman (all right let’s be honest, I want to write like Laura… but don’t have the guts to go through all the operations to actually become Laura).
I envy these writers a lot of times because each one does things differently and they do them all well. They write their way. And I want to write like them. But I can’t. I don’t write that way. It wouldn’t come out of me well. And then I get mad. Why not? I ask. Why can’t I write like them?
And that’s when I have to take a deep breath and remind myself that as a writer, I don’t want to be Duane or Ray or Al or Laura. And I shouldn’t. They are entities unto themselves.
So I should want to be Dave White.
And that’s what I think a lot of the best writers do (and I know this is opening up a whole can of worms… NO I DO NOT THINK I AM ONE OF THE BEST WRITERS. BUT I AM STRIVING….) I think they find their own voice.
Yeah, they imitated those they liked when they first started (Parker imitated Chandler, Leonard-Hemingway) but they moved on from that. They moved away and found their own voice.
So my goal is not to be the next so and so… it’s to be the first Dave White…
Unless you count the Dave White who reviews movies.
Or the Dave White who was in Bewitched…
(this is just a way to say BUY THE BOOKS that I just mentioned! They’re great!)