Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Reading As A Writer

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There are plenty of different approaches you can take when you are trying to learn how to write, and while many of these approaches are certainly beneficial, a lot of writers who are just starting out have a tendency to lunge toward writing courses or seminars, and they end up neglecting the most important thing of all for a writer, which is reading! Of course, you can pick up tips on writing from any book you read, because each book will show you things you might not have thought of before, or will give you new ideas and insights - but beyond simply reading the way most people read, there are also a few specific things you can do in order to maximize the knowledge you gain from the books you read.

If you want to maximize the knowledge you gain from your reading, one thing to consider doing is to always read with a pen in hand; each reader will find different things they will want to mark in a book, as there are certainly no "right" or "wrong" things to mark, but realize that you are reading to learn as much as you are reading for pleasure, and you should mark the things in the book that stand out to you.

It will also be important for you to read as many different types of books as you can if you are an aspiring author; while some people automatically think of "genre" when they read this, this point also stretches to reading books designed for different age ranges, books from different periods, and even books that are shabby in addition to the good ones!

Finally, you need to make sure you give yourself time to think - or to "digest" - the books you have read, either while you are reading or when you finish; too many readers try to rush through each book to get to the next, but as a writer, you need to get into the practice of sitting still and thinking quietly about what you have read. And when you start to put all these things together, you will find that your reading is doing more than just providing enjoyment and entertainment; it will give you some training as well!

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