Thursday, December 12, 2013
Do You Read?
What do you think? Do you think reading is an essential tool for writers?
I believe it offers exposure to genres, styles, and writing - good and bad. Reading provides a better scope and grasp of language, grammar, and usage. It offers varying perspectives, challenges us to think, and stretches the imagination. Another great perk is that it's an avenue to better communication, not just in written form, but verbal too.
Over the years I've noticed a difference reflected among my writing students who read and those who do not. No criticism intended; it's simply an observation. I encourage them all to read, telling them it is an easy way to help their writing and imagination grow.
In short, I think we need to read to be effective writers. We shouldn't limit ourselves to favorite genres either. It's important to explore a variety, fiction and non, long and short, in books, periodicals, and online.
Consider Stephen King's words on the topic:
"...Can I be blunt on this subject? If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write. Simple as that.”
Our time to read may be limited, but the benefits are worth the effort.
For more insight on the correlation between reading and writing, check out Christian Fahey's thoughts on The Upside in this post, Reading and Its Importance for Writers.
What benefits do you gain from reading? What's on your to be read pile?
Image credit: Stock Exchange