I forget to read sometimes. I’m not talking about reading the important books and articles on the craft of writing, or the blog posts from other writers about their successes and failures, or even books and articles about the business of being a writer. I’m talking about reading for the sheer enjoyment of reading and some of the genres that I am interested in writing in.
I was reminded when I read a blog posts by author Jody Hedlund today about the importance of reading, especially for a writer. She wrote about reading being an important tool in your writer’s toolkit because in order to be a good writer, in particular a fiction writer, you have to actually find the time to read just for your enjoyment. She also stressed the importance of not feeling guilty about taking time to read something that has absolutely nothing to do with researching whatever your next project is because reading in the end helps you learn other techniques of other writers and methods of storytelling that you might not have discovered before.
Reading her blog post made me think of just how many times I felt guilty for even reading a book that had nothing to do with what I was working on, or something to do with developing other techniques and skills that I need to as a writer. But I didn’t use to be that way. I used to always make sure I had a book in my hands, in fact there was a point in time where I would read two books at a time, one about my craft and one that I just wanted to read for enjoyment. I could breeze through a book in about two days and now I can barely get through a book in a couple of months.
I realized in reading Jody’s blog post that I shouldn’t feel guilty for wanting to just block out a space of time to read. It was reading that made me fall in love with writing in the first place. It was reading that made me want to be a storyteller that captivated people with just my words. It was reading that allowed me to get lost in other people’s stories when I didn’t want to be in my own reality. I forgot how much I loved to read and that I shouldn’t feel guilty about just wanting to curl up with a good book and get lost in a reality that is not my own.
The Diary: Succession of Lies (Now Available)
Writing as “Jaycee Durant”
3 thoughts on “For the Love of Reading”
I have followed your blog for a long time, so I know about your hopes and your fears. Today I read another author’s blogs that I think might interest you. If you don’t want the link here, I’m sorry and of course you may remove it.
Thank you for sharing this link with me. I found this blog to be very helpful and reassuring. I have a lot of doubts a lot of the time and this was good for me to read. Thank you again, both for reading my blog and for sharing any helpful information that you can.
My guilty pleasure reading that I confess feeling embarrassed about reading (at least in public) includes graphic novels. My husband is into comics and graphic novels and opened an entire new world of books to me. I don’t read them all of the time like my husband does, but occasionally I find one that interests me and give it a try. I am particularly fond of crime fiction graphic novels (not superheroes) and memoirs written and drawn in that format.