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How important is reading for a writer?

“The greatest part of a writer’s time is spent in reading in order to write; a man will turn over half a library to make one book.”

This quote by the legendary poet and essayist Samuel Johnson sums it all up. You can’t possibly expect to write a good book if you haven’t read any before. Still skeptical? Then read on 🙂 :

  • Learning from others- Writing is an art which develops through experience and knowledge of others’ works. A book is a dictionary-cum-thesaurus, but with much more exciting and enjoyable directives. Reading as many books as you can will enrich your vocabulary as well as entertain you.
  • Avoiding writer’s block- This is one problem that every writer faces at least once in his/her life. During that frustrating time, books can provide you instant relief. Not only that, sometimes some other writer’s plot may actually forward your own work, and ultimately surpass your writer’s damnable block!
  • Skillful copying- Even some great, award-winning authors have admitted that they have borrowed lines and phrases from other books, changed them slightly, and then used in their own book. This is generally known in the literary world as “copying from the masters”.
  • Knowing your niche- You cannot possibly begin writing your masterpiece unless you know for certain that it’s a novel and unique idea. No one enjoys a story that has been told before. People are hungering for new things to feast on, and to give them what they need, you need to brush up on what other writers in your genre have written and avoid repetition.
  • Plots and structures- You might have made up your mind that you’re going to write, but when you actually sit down to type, you’ll realize that it’s no easy matter. And even if you have a plot ready, how will you know that people will like it? As the world of literature and publishing is quite risky, reading popular and bestselling books of renowned authors will give you an inkling of what works and what doesn’t.
  • The essence of writing- The list of bestselling authors who love reading is endless, and it includes literary icons like Stephen King, Margaret Atwood, Harper Lee, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Oscar Wilde and countless others. In fact, reading has proven to be the key to their success.

Do you know other reasons behind why every successful writer is a voracious reader? Then let me know in the comments section below!

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Author:

Seventeen year old blogger, writer and interviewer. Also a voracious reader. My interests include classic books, archaeology, world history and politics. Staunch advocate for wildlife conservation and animal adoption. Debut novel to be out soon!

2 thoughts on “How important is reading for a writer?

  1. Reading improves grammar too. When I began writing I was so bad at using the correct tenses. Then a friend recommended me some books and the reading habit caught. Now, the sentences just bounce up at me. I don’t have to worry about the grammar any more. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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