“I can’t imagine anyone becoming a writer who wasn’t a voracious reader as an adolescent.”—Paul Auster, The Paris Review Interviews, Vol. IV
I mean, of course. In order to write well, you need to read well, and in order to read well, you must read. A lot.
“You should read the entire canon of literature that precedes you, back to the Greeks, up to the current issue of The Paris Review,” William Kennedy said in The New York Times back in 1990. But that seems a pretty tall order while dashing out a first draft during a one-month marathon. Maybe we can just agree that you shouldn’t skimp on reading while you’re writing your novel.
Why? Because reading refills the well. It replenishes you. Reading primes your brain with words, sure—but … [more]