Reading is Essential to Good Writing - Steph Cook

Reading is Essential to Good Writing

One of the questions I receive most often from my writing students is how to improve their writing. If you want to be a better writer, something that you must do consistently is read. Reading exposes you to new ideas, words, and styles of writing. You can explore new ways of expression through your reading or perhaps find a certain style of writing that you might try to emulate.

Reading helps you to identify the things you like in writing and the things you don’t. There may be a particular author whose style you enjoy, and you can learn from reading more from this author and absorbing how words and sentences are put together. On the other side of the coin, you can also find the things that you don’t like by reading – what styles or turns of phrase you don’t find appealing.

  Or you can simply read for fun. You will notice these things as you read and store them away for future use. It doesn’t have to be an active study in your craft every time you pick up a book. But reading will strengthen your writing practice.

  The bottom line is that the processes of writing and reading are related, and the more you do both, the more your own process will benefit from it.

  • Steph Cook