Learned: In a weird way, this book really brought home the fact that someone had written the story. Someone with a notebook or a computer, and a headful of ideas, just like me. Not those amazingly cool authors of my youth, who were seemingly unmatched in their story-telling prowess (at least in my fan-oriented mind). When Eragon came out, I had about a third of my first WIP done and had been working on it haphazardly in my free time.
This book was the fire that said, “Holy cow, if this kid can do it, so can I? What the heck am I waiting for? He’s my age, I can’t let him *gasp* beat me!”
I finished that first draft in less than a year.