B is for Bookworm

20130409-064736.jpgReading and writing are like love and marriage; they go together like a horse and carriage. To divorce the love affair of reading and writing is a tragedy. If you love to write, the chances are that you loved to read first. If you love to read, you have probably thought about being a writer.

If you are an aspiring writer, continuing to read religiously is a crucial element of your development as a writer. As J. K. Rowling puts it, “The most important thing is to read as much as you can. It will give you an understanding of what makes good writing and it will enlarge your vocabulary.”

If you want to write for a particular genre, for example young adults, I’d encourage you to make sure at least some of the books you read fall into this category. Get to know what sort of stories exist for the age group, and learn appropriate levels of language, graphic imagery, and so on. It’s important that you are reading for personal pleasure, so by all means step beyond just purely reading for homework, but hopefully, if you’ve decided to write for a certain age group or genre, it’s because you also enjoy reading those types of books as well.

I set myself a challenge each year of a certain number of books to read, and I keep a list of those I’ve read. It’s interesting to reflect on the different styles I’ve read, as well as a good way to keep myself accountable that I am reading regularly. I also get bored easily and I usually have about five or six books on the go! As long as I keep reading and I finish them eventually, this is definitely something that works for me, and means I can pick up one of the books that I feel like depending on my mood. I’m unlikely to want to read a theology book before going to bed, and would much prefer a young adult fiction. But on the weekend, when I want to stir my brain and I am pondering some questions, the theology book would probably be my first pick.

In case anyone is interested, these are the books I’m currently reading: 🙂

On Writing – Steven King

The Four Loves – C. S. Lewis

Writing Magic – Gail Carson Levine

The Message of Matthew – Michael Green

The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood

Escape to Ecclesia – Lisa Shah

What are you reading at the moment?

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One thought on “B is for Bookworm

  1. Totally agree, Jenn!
    I can remember loving the act of writing, learning to read and making up rhymes very early in life ( went with singing, I guess).
    I discovered reading and books at age 9 and was never without some tome of some kind… and many were re-read. I bought regularly from the little local second hand book store and began building my own library. 🙂 I still have a box full of them as well.
    They definitely influenced my world, my dreams and my work.
    Escape to Ecclesia: Flight for Freedom is my first novel and I have sequels queued.
    For a brief synopsis and a few reviews click the link below. 🙂
    http://www.amazon.com/Escape-Ecclesia-Molly-Flight-Freedom/dp/1452506450

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