“Reading is as important as writing.”
On the surface, that sounds like simple advice and even something to scoff at, as you would think “Wait, I already know how to read. Why does this statement keep getting repeated?”
However, there are many cases where this piece of advice is more valuable than most would think. Film makers watch other peoples’ films to analyze technique and style, musicians listen to other musicians to understand how they compose music and set up lyrics, and artists look at other art works to examine how these pieces were created.
The process of creatives examining and looking at other creatives’ work applies the same to writers; writers look at other writers’ works to understand how they set up prose, plot, syntax, and overall writing style. The importance of reading for writers isn’t just to check out new works or even to learn new vocabulary words. Reading is essential because writers can learn how other writers operate and serve as inspiration to write their own works. In short, reading other peoples’ books and articles serves as both a point of reference for how writing works and serves as an inspiration.
One of the major benefits of reading what other writers have created is getting new ideas. There are an estimated 2,4650,286 published in the world, and they all have different ideas in one form or another. The more you read, the more ideas you’ll be introduced to. By reading, you will also be learning new writing-based techniques, the rhythm of how language works, and how mechanics such as punctuation, capitalization, and quotations work. Most importantly, it improves your imagination and boosts your vocabulary. A robust vocabulary and heightened imagination helps with developing characters, settings, and situations.
Reading, especially when it comes to the latest books, helps update the reader on different trends going on. It is also essential with research and critical thinking, which themselves are a boon to writers in this day and age who have access to near-endless information thanks to the Internet and to help determine what story mechanics and information works and what elements don’t work entirely.
In conclusion, reading is essential because it inspires writers to create their own works thanks to being inspired by others who practice the writing craft and bring their own ideas and techniques to the table.