Every Thursday, I shall blog my answer to a question, which you have asked. You can ask me questions with #askpreeti tag either on my FB page or tweet to me using #askpreeti - See more at: http://blog.preetishenoy.com/2014/11/family-versus-work-what-should-you.html#sthash.qr7xyH3g.dpuf
It's Thursday! And it is #askpreeti
Every Thursday, I shall blog my answer to a question, which you have asked. You can ask me questions with #askpreeti tag either on my FB page or tweet to me using #askpreeti
Today I picked three questions which are related. Readers-- Vishad Gupta, Risita Ghadei and Varsha Gaikwad asked me about how to improve English and asked about writing better and editing better.
First of all I must reiterate that I am still learning how to write better! I might be a successful novelist but of course I am still a student. With each book I write, I am getting better. But there is a long way to go.
How did I start writing my first novel--what my journey was like--I have blogged about it in detail on my 500th Post. (written in 2011) Click HERE
Here are some things that I do, which work superbly for me---and maybe they will be of use to you too.
1.Read a lot: It is imperative to read in order to become a better writer. Read a wide variety of authors--and not just Indian authors please! I read up to four books at a time. Each room in my home will have a book that I am currently reading. I just finished Murakami's South of Border West of Sun, Neil Gaiman's Anansi Boys and started Gillain Flynn's Gone girl. They are BRILLIANT writers. If you want a fun,light, fast paced read, try Sophie Kinsella. The thing with reading--more you read, more you will enjoy it. And the benefits of reading are improved grammar and vocabulary and improved intelligence. Scientific research has proven that people who read are smarter than the ones who don't. So make time to read. If you do not like fiction there are tonnes of non-fiction. You need not restrict your reading to books. Sites like www.economist.com and Huffington post have excellent articles. Don't know how to make time? Here is a post I wrote--5 ways to make time to read: http://blog.preetishenoy.com/2013/06/5-ways-to-make-more-time-to-read-blog.html
2. Write every single day: If you want toned muscular arms, you go the gym and pump weights,take whey protein and spruce your diet. You put in hard work and you see results. How is writing any different? If you are serious about being a writer, you have to write every single day. You needn't write a novel or a book or anything 'great'. You don't even have to share it with anybody. You can write emails, blog posts, diary entries, journals, paragraphs, about something you read, something that moved you, something you feel strongly about---anything at all! There are no rules. Just write and pour it all out. It is certain to get better with time and experience.
3.Learn a new word every day: When I was a little girl, my dad told me to read the editorial of 'The Hindu' and write down difficult words that I did not know the meaning of. Those were the days before Internet and computers. I would write them down, look them up in the dictionary. Then my dad and I would use that word in a sentence. I would come up with a sentence and so would he. Today it is so easy. I get a new word delivered to my inbox every single day. The good part now is that I know eighty percent of them :) And when I come across a word I do not know, I am delighted to have learnt something new.
4. If you are a student, Wren and Martin it is! : Since many of you asked me about improving grammar, I thought I would share what my Bible was, when I was a student of English. It was Wren and Martin . It taught me all that I needed to know about grammar. By then i was reading so much that using English the right way came naturally. I would refer the book in case of doubts. Today you have so many online sites that teach you the right usage, correct your grammar, point you in the right direction. All you need to do is Google! (And not wander off to FB to check out what your friends are doing)
5.Free online courses: Coursera is a superb resource that offers FREE courses. You can take the world's best courses, online for free. How awesome is that? If you are looking for a basic fundamental writing course, here is a link: https://www.coursera.org/course/basicwriting
There are many more free online writing courses including one which MIT offers.
Happy writing folks! Hope what I have said helps you all. If you liked what I have written, don't forget to leave me a comment in my comment box.
And yes---if you are looking for a contemporary, racy, gripping read, my new book 'It happens for a reason' will be out in less than 5 weeks!
Now, show me some love and grab it here:
(You don't need a credit card to order. You can pay cash on delivery)