I don’t know about you but when I read, I tend to space out. A lot.
I’m the kind of reader who can burn through a whole chapter but then spend two hours on the first page of another chapter. It usually happens when a word or a particular line triggers an idea in my head and without meaning to, the idea rolls on with or without me having much say in it.
This is one of the reasons I love reading. The first reason is of course for enjoyment and for escapism, like a lot of readers out there. But the other reason is the way a story can lead me to another story of my own.
The thing is the ideas that do form in my head often have no link whatsoever to what I am reading at the time. Reading is, in essence, a gateway to my own creative space. That’s some deep stuff right there but it is the truth.
A writer needs to read. It’s an old thing but it is a true thing.
My imagination and creativity are nourished through various means but one of the biggest slices of said nourishment comes from reading. If anything, to be taken on a voyage in another writer’s story is an experience in itself.
You admire what others do and sometimes you find out what you wouldn’t do as a writer.
That’s the beauty of it as well, sometimes you read a story and you think to yourself ‘I wouldn’t have done it like that.’ Just because it works for one writer does not mean it will work for all writers. Reading helps shape your craft and it gets you closer to where you’re meant to be.
There are authors you connect with more than any other authors. I know I often pick up a book just because I know I like the way that particular author writes. The story might not be the best but the writing will carry me through.
Then there are writers you stumble upon who make you wish you never met them in the first place.
Does this mean it was a waste of time to read their work? Of course not.
Because even from these books that do not connect with me, I learn a lot. For example I could be reading a description in a story and I would think, ‘Damn, that’s an awful lot of time to spend describing a brick in the wall. Eesh! Not doing that. Ever.’
I love reading, especially when it makes me space out because that space is a great place to be. I feel alive in that space. I love how words can cause such a range of reactions from me. From all parts of me. From the reader to the writer while not forgetting the child who loved reading all the stories in the school library.
You read, you learn, you write. 😉