I spent this summer reading. Sure, I did other things too… entertained friends, took a painting class (we shall never speak of this again), broke my foot (more accurately, chipped a bone in it but for dramatic effect…), ran away from home (AKA, was evacuated due to wildfires), and read. I read a lot.
My partner travels for work a fair bit, spending anywhere from one week to a month away at a time and this summer was no different. So, my books often kept me company. But I also had an ulterior motive.
And it wasn’t just to pass the time…
You should write because you love the shape of stories and sentences and the creation of different words on a page. Writing comes from reading, and reading is the finest teacher of how to write.Annie Proulx
It has been said over and over again that to be a good writer, you must be a good reader. And it makes sense. How can you be a good chef if you don’t enjoy food? A good lifeguard if you can’t swim? You see my point. Getting better at anything takes practice and study. I’m trying hard to do both in equal measure.
If you don’t have the time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write. Simple as that.Stephen King
Hopefully, over time, we’ll see a difference.
This is the pile of books I read this summer, and by summer, I mean from June to August inclusive. Not the true summer, I know but certainly summer as I define it in my mind. There are different genres ranging from young adult to murder mystery, literary fiction and commercial fiction. And a few memoirs sprinkled in for variety. And it was the variety I enjoyed. Did I enjoy all of the books, absolutely not but the excitement of opening a new book, and beginning the journey the author has created for me never diminished.
Read, read, read. Read everything – trash, classics, good and bad, and see how they do it. Just like a carpenter who works as an apprentice and studies the master. Read! You’ll absorb it. Then write. If it’s good, you’ll find out. If it’s not, throw it out the window.William Faulkner
I have never thought of myself as a prolific reader but the more I recognize how it helps me as a writer, the more ravenous I become. Not to mention, there is so darn much great content out there to get to, one lifetime is nowhere near enough.
So, I read. To learn, to escape and to dream. And to hope… hope that my voice, my story, is also worth a read.
I kept always two books in my pocket, one to read, and one to write in.Robert Louis Stevenson