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Yves N Johnson
I spent 30 years as a staff writer for a newspaper and freelance journalist for a major daily newspaper, plus a few others and I think writing short terse non-fiction is a big help in later writing short stories, slice of life stories and even novels and non-fiction books. Of course writing tight and not wasting words can backfire in books which demand a stretching of words due to their length. However, having essay and journalistic skills still helps in keeping a workable pace in a longer work, freeing it from possible boredom to the reader.
Micki, you encourage me. I haven't figured out how to navigate this site yet.
I do agree that writing non-fiction helps for writing fiction. On the other hand, I still have trouble sounding like a social psychologist when I write fiction.