The Sanguinarian

The Sanguinarian

Tuesday, 21 April 2015

R for Reading- Why it's most important for writers

Reading is the most important part of the process of becoming a writer.
Obvious thing, right?
You need to read like hell to write like hell. You need to read as many books in as many genres as possible- how many in each genre is your own prerogative.
You need to read poetry, novels, short stories, articles.
You need to read other stuff- like magazines, newspapers, journals, literary magazines, book and movie reviews.
You need to read widely to develop the neural wiring required to become a writer.
Obvious, right?
Well, not so obvious for some people who call themselves 'writers'.
And yet, declare very proudly that they 'don't read'.
Now I don't deny that there are exceptions to every rule.
But reading for writers is as important as is a beating heart to life in a body.
It's not a rule- it's a universal truth.
But there are some specimens who come in the 'I-am-a-writer-but-I-don't-read' category.
One such specimen, on the so called 'literary scene' in India (why India doesn't have a literary scene is a topic of debate for another time), is the illustrious Ravinder Singh.
Calling himself the 'Nicholas Sparks' of India, he claims to 'write for the youth' 'connect to the youth' and blah blah blah.
In my opinion, his books are a total waste of paper- containing only annoying cliches, a story which moves at snail pace and has no head or tail, mushy, pointless romance, needless jingoism and other such undesirable stuff which makes his 'books' nothing but toxic waste.
In my opinion, his 'non-reader' status also explains the poor quality of his prose, and the asinine content of his 'novels'.
It explains the jarring, stunted quality of his prose and the sloppy editing.
I don't understand.
How can one not read and still manage to write a book which is a bestseller?
Singh's books are selling millions of copies and he is making waves among the young people who are loyal to his brand of literature.
I don't know if I will ever find the answer to the question- Can you be a good writer without being a voracious reader? If you are, how will be the quality of your books?
Meanwhile, I'm a consummate bookworm and a writer.

This blog post is part of the A to Z challenge


  1. Gawd! Writers who don't read are the really stupid. Sorry no offense intended but I really dont understand this declarartion when they write about this. You have brought out a valid point Prachi.

  2. Absolutely, there's no writing without reading. Signed, a fellow bookworm and author. ;-)
    My link:

    1. And yet, Devika, people are writing obnoxious waste and it gets published and even sells! Perpetual mystery. Makes fools of writers like you and me who're trying to put some meaningful stuff out there.

  3. I never gave it much thought before but this is very true.

    Sean at His and Her Hobbies