Reading and Writing

There's an interesting debate that I never thought much about until I ran across it on Facebook a few weeks ago. Someone asked "Must you be a good reader in order to be a good writer?" and my answer was immediate and from the gut - yes, of course you do.

But there were many people in the comments (not a majority, but enough to surprise me) that asserted that not only do you not have to read in order to write, but you shouldn't read when you want to write, because if you do then you'll just end up copying what someone else has already written.

Now... I don't think this is true, though I'm happy to admit that the answer does have some amount of logic. What you read will heavily influence what you write. But the assumption that a writer will simply copy what they read is only true insofar as the writer only ever reads a single thing. Whether that's a book, an author, or a genre, if a writer sticks to reading only one thing, then any attempt to write that kind of thing will end up sounding a lot like what they read.

So the key, I think, is to read many different things. Different authors, different series, different genres. A variety of reading material will expose a writer to many different styles and subjects.

But that's my opinion, and I know I'm... very opinionated. ;P What do you Inklings think about this? Leave a comment below and let me know what strikes you about this debate! #Debate #SocialMedia #Reading #Writing

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