Why Reading Everything Will Make You A Better Writer

By on February 26, 2018
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When it comes to improving our writing, one of the most important things you can do is read. Reading is by far the very best way to get inspired, to learn, to experiment and find our own writing voice, and the more we read, the more our writing will improve.

Many famous writers have testified the same, speaking out about how reading can have a profound and exciting influence on the mind. As the great Stephen King said:

“If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write. Simple as that.” -

The great news is that reading is a brilliant pastime too! When you are truly immersed in a great book there is nothing quite like it, you are lost in another world, and you can truly let go of the stresses and strains of everyday life.

So just how does reading influence and improve your writing? Let’s take a look.

It inspires you

Reading as much as you possibly can is by far the best way to get inspiration for your work. That’s not to say you should set out with the goal of copying or pinching another authors ideas, but allowing yourself to be inspired by their work and purposely thinking about the elements of their stories that you love and how you could use them in your own writing just makes good sense!

It teaches you

When you read you are learning from the greats. Your favourite authors are probably pretty successful, and by reading their work and that of others, you will understand what it is that makes a great story. This knowledge is invaluable to any writer and the more you read, the more insights you will discover!

It helps you get to know a genre better and learn its rules

When you know what genre your book is it is a good idea to read as many books as possible that are in the same genre. Doing so will help you discover the various patterns that make a book fall into that category, and you’ll begin to understand the common themes and the rules which can help you make sure that when you write your own story, you are following these and are therefore more likely to make it appeal to the right readers.

It widens your vocabulary, improves your grammar skills and opens your eyes to new techniques.

The more you read, the more educated you become, not just around the topics you read but also the tools and structures that are necessary to make a story flow well. You will have a more extensive vocabulary, using language creatively will come more naturally to you, and the way to pull sentences together will also improve.

Think about it, do you know any painters who don’t love art? Any musicians who refuse to listen to music? All creative, artistic people are passionate about their art as a whole and use it to help them become better at what they do. The same goes for writers, without love and passion for reading it will be so difficult to come up with a story that other people love and enjoy.

So if you only take away one piece of advice as a writer, then it should be to read. Read anything and everything you like and the more you do, the more empowered, knowledgeable and creative you’ll become!

Bethany Cadman -author of 'Doctor Vanilla's Sunflowers'

Bethany Cadman -author of 'Doctor Vanilla's Sunflowers'

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