A Reader or a Writer, which would you rather be?
by Stephanie Dorman
Stephen King once said, “If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write. Simple as that.” I believe that wholeheartedly. I can also speak from experience on this one. In the process of writing my own novel, I noticed aspects of everything I had ever read pouring out on to the pages. All the trashy romance novels, all the epic fantasies, parts of them were all there. It wasn't plagiarism, but inspiration. In order to be a writer, you have to first be a reader.
For a writer, reading any and all books is studying your craft. In any other profession people can study for years under a mentor, for instance, a welder might be an apprentice to a master welder. When you’re a writer, the greats are already laid out for you in your genre. You have to read them, study them, dissect their writing and their style, and take what you get from that and apply it with your own flair.
One of the most interesting things about writing a novel though, and the process that follows it, is that it takes time. First, you have to write the novel, then you have to edit it, and finally, once it’s complete, you have to market it. If you’re doing this all while you have a full time job, time you usually spent reading is sucked into the void that is your novel.
Take me for instance, I’m writing this on a Saturday night. All my friends are going out to various parties and I’m sitting here writing a guest post for my book tour. I could be spending this time reading, growing my craft, but instead I’m writing this for all of you. On November 1st, NaNoWriMo will be starting, and I will be sucked into not only the press tour for my first book – but writing its sequel. Where will I find the time to read?
The most important thing to remember when deciding that you want to be a writer, is if you have the time to be a reader. There is no one or other, you must be both. Like Stephen King says, if I don’t make the time to read, I won’t have the tools to be a writer.
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Genre – Zombies / ChickLit
Rating – PG13
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