Thursday, May 14, 2015

Craft, research and learning new tricks

When readers pick up a book they read it in a few short hours. But behind every finished product there is professional editing, critiquing, the authors polishing, first draft, plotting, daydreaming, researching, hunting down an idea with a club and a machete…

The craft when the reader reads should be invisible, and yet if the craft wasn’t there the story wouldn’t hang together. Authors know about themes and motives (even if they aren’t there in the plotting or the first draft they appear gradually). They know about the three act structure and how to increase tension and also release it just a little. They know about end of scene and end of chapters so you turn the page because you have to know what happens even though you have to get up in six hours!

Even though I have been writing (as an adult) for a decade I still buy and read craft books. I read novels and try to work out why it worked…or why it didn’t (that is harder because sometimes the voice just wasn’t my thing, it happens as not every book is for every person and it would be a very boring place if we did all like the same things).

As an author I think it is important to keep learning.

As a person no matter what you do it’s important to keep learning and trying new things.

New ideas, and new subjects, are out there just waiting to be explored. I love as there are all kinds of interesting subjects to study, for free.

I don’t want to be the same person ten years from now as I am today.

I know I am definitely not the same writer. No one ever needs to see that first manuscript. EVER. Or the one that followed it. Some things can’t be unseen.

What are your favourite ways to learn new things?

Singer of Death (Court of Annwyn 5)

Her voice is as seductive as it is dangerous…
Bronwyn Charow’s life had been destroyed even before the plagues came. In a fit of jealousy her ex threw acid on her face. But no one notices her scarred face when she sings. And no one is immune.

Coming June 18 Amazon

SHONA HUSK is the author of the Shadowlands, Court of Annwyn and the Face the Music Series. You can find out more information about Shona and her edgy romances at or follow her on Twitter @ShonaHusk, Facebook or join her newsletter:


  1. A lovely post Shona...I am so with of the fun parts of writing is changing and working at getting better

  2. It always shows when authors keep honing their craft and it is greatly appreciated by us readers. I learn best by doing...although I am woefully inept at some keeping my knitting from curling up, lol.

  3. I learn by the seat of my pants...because of a busy schedule, I'm a great follower of what others have tried and proved to be true. I'm always saying, "Go out there; figure it out and then come back and teach me." I have no pride and I always give credit where credit is due. It's the least I can do!