Sometimes readers wonder, and even ask, how a writer improves.
While writing on a regular basis can help, it doesn't necessarily mean you're improving. Practising a flawed technique won't advance quality. Folks reading your work, pointing out weaknesses can help a writer focus. But how does a writer improve and overcome that weakness?
Here's how I do it...or attempt to:
When I come across an author/novel(s) that I really enjoy I often re-read them.
One of the benefits of reading novels is that it sets the foundation of storytelling for the writer. The writer gets an idea or feeling how it should be done, structure, flow, what works and what doesn't.
It takes time--a lot of time, but I think it's the best way to learn and move forward. Some of the authors I've studied:
Roger Zelazny, especially The Chronicles of Amber, and A Night in the Lonesome October
Steven Brust, especially The Vlad Taltos Series
Stephen R. Donaldson, especially The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant, the Unbeliever
Laurel K. Hamilton, especially the Anita Blake Series (the early novels)