Is Reading Really Fundamental to Growing as a Writer?
By Joanne Troppello
I have always loved to read ever since I was a little girl when I first discovered books. Reading fueled my appetite to learn to write and the rest is history—well, almost. For a while I was focusing so much on writing my current WIP’s that I didn’t read any new books for over six months. Of course, that’s not beneficial to my writing and I finally realized that.
I recently started doing some book reviews and that has whet my appetite again to reading and why I love it so much. It has also reminded me how much—as a writer—I need to read other books, both fiction and non-fiction. I recently finished reading “Deadly Emotions” by Dr. Don Colbert and “The Prayer That Changes Everything: The Hidden Power of Praising God” by Stormie Omartian. Here is the link for my review of Dr. Colbert’s book. Here is my review for Ms. Omartian’s book.
Reading how other authors write is beneficial to sharpening your own writing skills. If you’re looking closely enough, you’ll see what works for other authors and what doesn’t. Your skills will be honed. That’s the point, right—we should always want to do what is necessary to sharpen our skillset and write better novels and nonfiction books. At least that’s my goal.
I know with my first book, I did not know what I was doing other than basic grammar skills and that I really, really wanted to be an author. However, wanting to be a real author and truly being one—two totally different stories. Being a successful author takes hard work and determination and you always need to take the good with the bad. Are you able to handle constructive criticism from editors, publishers, book reviewers, and even readers…without getting offended? It takes me time to process the criticism, but usually I can get a handle on it and use that to make my writing better.
Now that my third novel has been published and I’m working on my fourth, I’m excited that I’m still learning more on how to write better and get a truly polished novel that readers want to read. Starting to read other books again has truly assisted in that journey.
There are different levels of writing and I want to strive to make it to the highest level that I can write. Reading more books can open your mind to those different levels of writing skills and you can compare that to your own set of skills—then figure out where you need to improve. Obviously, your end goal is not to copy another author’s work. That would be plagiarism and wrong! My point is that reading good, quality work can inspire you to see where your writing skills are lacking and open up your eyes to see where you can improve.
I recently received a Kindle and let’s just say that I LOVE it!! I never thought I would enjoy reading on an eReader since I was an advocate for print books. However, after my mom got one—and she was more against the eReader than I was—she convinced me that I would love it. I’ve only had the Kindle for a short time and I’ve fallen in love—I’ve been kindle-fied!
Currently, I’m reading “First Impressions”, a novella by bestselling author, Elizabeth Johns.
I am enjoying this book and will post a review when I finish reading it. I’m curious what other people think about the subject of eBooks vs. print books. Do you think print books will become obsolete? If you have an eReader, which kind and what do you like about it?
About the Author
Joanne Troppello is a published author of 3 inspirational fiction novels and the Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of Pandora's Box Gazette. She has experience as a freelance writer in topics such as marketing, retail marketing, health and wellness, internet and media, travel and lifestyle, website content, app recommendations, and content for blogs.
Visit her Amazon Author Page for more information regarding her books.