"There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate's loot on Treasure Island." - Walt Disney

Monday, April 21, 2014

Reading

"Reading usually precedes writing and the impulse to write is almost always fired by reading. Reading, the love of reading, is what makes you dream of becoming a writer."   - Susan Sontag

Most writers don't have a favorite book, they have a hard time narrowing the choice down to just one. They may name several, a series, or a favorite author instead.

However, if you ask any teacher, or successful author for their writing tips, reading will certainly be recommended. In fact, for many, reading occupies more of their day than the act of writing. When asked to describe his daily routine, Portuguese Nobel Prize winning novelist Jose' Saramago answered, "I write two pages. And then I read and read and read."

If you plan to write, keep a reading journal. Record what you read, what you liked, or what struck you as powerful.  Thinking about and understanding why a book appeals to you will help you develop as a writer. Try reading a variety of genres. It will inform your writing and help you understand the minds of your own readers.

So, what are you reading? What books do you recommend, and why?

15 comments:

Rob-bear said...

I always believed reading and writing would go together. How else does on learn about structure, and style, and the use of details?

Blessings and Bear hugs, Sylvia.

Julie Luek said...

I started keeping a book journal several years ago when I realized I had the memory retention of a gnat LOL! I can't remember anything otherwise.

Reading is essential to writing, in my opinion and besides, just sheer pleasure!

CA Heaven said...

Just came back from Easter vacation; 10 days of skiing, and 5 books read. If I should recommend a book for writers, it must be On Writing by Stephen King, I re-read it a couple of days ago. For the last year or so I've been hooked on the books by Haruka Murakami and Michel Houllebecq, great authors both of them. In particular, I would recommend The Map and the Territory by Houellebecq >:)

Cold As Heaven

Heather (My Little HEA) said...

Yes, while I was in the Fanfiction world I quickly became consumed with wanting to share my stories like the authors I was lovingly reading. I just reread Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire and am starting The Sea of Tranquility by Katja Millay.

It Is Interesting To Note said...

I agree with CA, Stephen King' s On Writing is great. It inspires me to work harder at my own writing. My list of favorite authors is way too long to list them all...but Dick Francis, Harper Lee, John Sandford, Lord Byron and Shakespeare all jump to mind (English teacher!)

Ava Quinn said...

Great tips. When I taught 4th grade, every night included in their homework was to read for 10 minutes.

I haven't had much time to read recently, but I'm enjoying the note taking feature on my Nook. I use it all the time to write my impressions on different aspects of the books I do read.

Great post!

P Lusamba said...

I love these tips. I just recently started exploring creative writing. So far, so good. I definitely use these tips for my upcoming articles and creative pieces. New subscriber!
#theawsomedish

Elizabeth Varadan, Author said...

I feel like I'm always reading, reading, reading. I was happy to hear that a Nobel Prize winner reads more than he writes! Two pages a day, wow. (But I would bet they are superb pages.)
Right now I'm reading a collection of articles about Spain in a wonderful book called Travelers' Tales. It's written from so many perspectives and styles and is really full of fascinating information. (My hubby and I are in Spain right now, so it's especially relevant.) Normally, though, I'm immersed in fiction, and I love to read mysteries of all kinds.

susanleighnoble said...

I love reading but sadly haven't had time for too much of it lately. I find that if I start reading a book, I get pulled into it and let all other things fall to the wayside.

A.M. Guynes/Annikka Woods said...

I've brought home six books from the library and only started one. Thank goodness they're not due until May. I've got time to finish them all. Yes, I'll read them all in time, though I need to check the due date on three of them.

TheCyborgMom said...

I did my "R" post on Reading as well :) It's popular! I think my favorite author is Stephen King...I read his Dark Tower series several years ago and was hooked!
~Katie

Cecilia said...

I wanted to compile a list of all the books I have ever read and found it impossible. Reading was certainly my first love and remains a steadfast delight in my life. I have been reading fluently since I was preschool and never a day goes by when I have not read something.

Marcy said...

I love this post. I was introduced to Good Reads several years ago and love using it to keep track of what I have been reading. I was a much more prolific reader before I went to college and then again as a stay at home Mom when my children were young. I wish I would have kept a list of all of the books I read back then. How would it be to be able to just read and write all day every day?

the little princess said...

true....well said!! I have not kept a list of books that i have read....maybe i should have! the one i'm reading now is The Secret by Rhonda Bryne...

thanks for visting my blog and commenting on my space!

Nicole said...

Oh, so many recommendations! The latest would probably be Lady Thief, the second book in AC Gaughen's Scarlet series.