“If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write. Simple as that.” Those are wise words from best-selling author Stephen King. Indeed reading and writing always go together. But have you wondered why writers should be readers?
Can you not write effectively if you don’t like to read? The short and straight answer is ‘no’.
Why Writers Should Be Readers
Better command of the language
You encounter many words when you read. You discover several ways of expressing a certain idea when you read. Reading improves your vocabulary. A writer who has the skill to make great descriptions, bring readers to a certain point or place and makes them feel and think in a particular way has a good command of the English language.
When readers read their works, they are in awe of the experience that reading has brought them. These writers’ vocabulary must be excellent.
You also become an expert in grammar and spelling. You can spot what is wrong with the word or sentence you write because you know it doesn’t sound right—because reading has made you an expert in knowing the proper way to write.
If you are a writer, the written word is your tool of course. Reading sort of fills you and supplies what you need so you can be effective in what you do.
You can say that reading is like planting seeds of words, and when you need it, there is something for you to harvest.
Do not just read books or novels. Read the news, magazines or blogs too. This will help you get updated of the latest trend in writing, current events, and it will make you aware of what topics have been written similar to yours. You get the news updates on your niche and you know the right people relevant to what you write about.
I personally have my favourite bloggers. Be it in the niche of traveling, lifestyle, faith, or even fashion, I have my go-to website.
Reading other people’s work inspires you to write better too. It is not about stealing their ideas but knowing which style is effective for a reader like you. What makes you come back to their website all the time? What is appealing and what should you avoid? What can you emulate and what can you do better?
You also find happy and success stories (may not be related to the topic you are currently writing about) that gives you a mood boost or encourage you to overcome your own challenge at the moment.
Writers like Maya Angelou have a lot of inspiring quotes and stories that will make you believe in yourself too. Thus, making you write better and be better in what you do.
Reading can wake up those sleeping brain cells by giving it the workout it needs. All the benefits of mental stimulation go with reading; better memory, improved creativity and broadened imagination, increases your comprehensive thinking, and makes you more analytical. These things are all important factors for your writing.
It can also help you de-stress especially if you’re reading a story that transports you to a different mesmerizing world or just a simple comic book. A relaxed mind can do so much more as it’s free from distractions.
Think about writing as going to the battle. Your weapon is word. Don’t come to war unprepared. Arm yourself with the weapon of words through reading. Read a lot.