The universe is trying to tell me something. For all the years I've home schooled and had James doing copy work, as suggested by Susan Wise Bauer in Well Trained Mind and Charlotte Mason's classical education ideals, not once has it ever occurred to me that it would be beneficial for me to do so. I discovered I retain and remember more when taking notes while reading non fiction. I've learned to underline sentences and paragraphs that spark while reading fiction, otherwise it goes poof and I never find that perfect sentence again. What does that have to do with copy work?
I read about the practice of copy work for writers in the last couple books I read, plus I've stumbled across the art of copy work on the internet this past week. Brent McKay from the The Art of Manliness explains best how it will improve your writing as well as memory and focus. A few years back when I was reading all of James Scott Bell writing books, the idea didn't stick. Read a book, take notes, copy the sentences, analyze the structure. Lather, rinse, repeat. It didn't stick. I guess the time wasn't right.
The universe has been throwing copy work in my face the past few days and I finally got the hint. I've been contemplating - who (whom?) shall I copy? Who will help me the most? Robert Frost is one of my favorite poets. This morning's prompt for the National Journal Writing Month is to copy The Road Less Traveled, think about it and write about a time when you've take the less popular road, figuratively or literally. Check - Robert Frost goes on the list.
I love Dean Koontz's writing- he's poetic yet not, hitting all the senses, pulling me into the story and immersing me in the characters world. Then there's the diva of writing, Nora Roberts. I love her trilogies and also her In Death series which I've read several times. I could never write stories like either one of them. However, maybe like the saying -
Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you'll land among the stars.
So, I'm going to shoot for the moon, include copy work in my writing repertoire and see where it takes me.