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thoughts

Books for Thought is where I post a discussion topic related to books, reading, writing, or something related to one of the three. I hope you’ll join in, and discuss today’s topic of

does a reader = a writer?

I’m pretty sure I’ve seen this topic floating around the blogosphere a few times, but I thought I might talk about it, anyway.

I, for one, have been reading and writing ever since the two actions were doable by 5-or so-year old me. I love both with a passion, and could never, EVER, pick between them. They’re both too precious.

precious

But is it the norm? To be both an avid reader, and aspiring writer? Or do the majority of people pick one as their passion?

This month is National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo), and I have seen about 70% of the blogs I follow post updates. Which means the owner loves reading and writing. Which came as sort of a surprise to me. I didn’t know that so many of these bloggers, who I had read posts of, and had conversations with, all wanted to write a book. It’s pretty amazing – how talented they all are.

BUT there is another inherent question regarding the writing. Are they doing it for fun, or do they legitimately want to be published authors? I suppose only they know, and after this post, if you are willing to answer my prompts, I might know. :D

But back to the original topic.

Reading

read

Reading is all about being given something. An author has put their blood, sweat, and tears into the story you’re reading. You can immerse yourself in the beauty of someone else’s art, and emerge monetarily poorer but emotionally richer.

You can sit back and relax while you enjoy the author’s hard work. Reading is an escape, a distraction. An easy slide out of reality that requires no work on your behalf except turning a page, or touching your eReader. Simple, yet satisfying. Reading is one of the easiest hobbies to partake in, and one of the best (if not THE best, EVER).

Writing

writing pusheen

Writing, on the other hand, is filled to the brim with hard work. Like I said, an author’s blood, sweat, and tears go into these novels. They don’t just magically pop out. And you have to have an idea for a novel or a story to be ABLE to write.

div

But does reading mean that your imagination will be wild, and that if you do have an idea, you want to put pen to paper (or finger to keyboard), and spend hours upon hours punching it out? Or does reading mean that you just enjoy the story that someone else has punched out because you like the experience of reading about worlds and people different from your own?

Does reading inspire people to write, because they love the experience so much they want to give more to this world of reading, but in their own words and stories? Are the two activities intertwined?

And if a reader does write, is it for their own pleasure, or do they want to share their words with the world, like the many books that they have read?

I’ve said that I love both reading and writing with equal passion. And I want to be a published author someday. It’s always been a dream of mine. I want people to read my story, and for my book to be on someone’s bookshelf. I couldn’t think of anything that could make me a happier person.

For me, reading and writing ARE intertwined. Reading fantastic books make ME want to write a fantastic book. I just can’t help myself. And I think being in love with reading from a young age definitely influenced my aspirations of becoming a published author one day, because I want someone to fall in love with my book and read it 100 times, and fangirl about it, and maybe even blog about it, or contact me about it. I want to provide a reader with a story that they can love, and that they can treasure.

Writing has never just been a hobby for me. Writing is one of my passions, and will forever be so.

div

But I also want to know about YOU. Do you read and write? If you only partake in one, why? If you are a writer, do you write for fun, or do you want to be published? Do you think reading and writing are intertwined? Let me know in the comment section below!

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Posted on: November 20, 2013 • By: Chiara

26 Responses to Reader = Writer?

  1. Charleen says:

    I’ve always done both, and reading great books (or even not-so-great books) has always made me want to create my own. I’ve never really dreamed of being published, though. And in the past couple years I’ve actually lost some of my passion for it. I think I’ll always be a writer in some sense, but right now I’m definitely more interested in blogging than writing fiction.

  2. I’ve always loved reading. And when I was younger, reading and writing went together. I actually wrote three “books” in my teen years (filled with teen angst). Then when I was in 9th grade and wrote my last one, I realized that I just wasn’t ever going to be that good so I didn’t write again until after college. And again, was faced with the fact that I am just not good. I write now (I’m in academia) but I just read for pleasure and I love it. I’m amazed at writers who can create such incredible worlds filled with characters that I genuinely care about. But I just don’t have the talent for it.

    • I think writing for yourself is just as important as writing for others. I’m sorry you feel that way about your writing :(
      I am always amazed at authors, as well, especially ones that write books that grip my heart. When I read those, I feel as if I am not good enough to write a book like that, or that my writing is not up to par. But we are always our worst critics, so you never know!

  3. RamisaR says:

    This is contradictory, but I absolutely hated reading when I was younger. Then I read a couple of books, and those couple of books turned into a minimum of 100 per year (!) for the last 2 years. I also began writing then, and, well, I wrote because it was a form of expression. I was going through a difficult time when I began, and wrote a lot (I’m at a 900,000 words across all my novels, both incomplete and complete) and my grades began slipping, wouldn’t read as much books, spent all my time locked up in my room, etc. But it helped me cope. It’s an expression of words in itself, and I am forever thankful I had that experience.
    I don’t write much anymore, but I blog a lot. School is more important, and so are friends. I’ve changed my priorities, and hey, I write every now and then, too. :D
    Anyway, wonderful post. :D

    • How could you have hated reading? D: Haha. :P
      Writing can really truly help with all kinds of experiences. In 2011, my poetry helped me more than any person could, so I definitely understand what you mean. To put those emotions towards something productive and beautiful is the best way of coping with them.
      And, wow! 900,000 words :O I don’t know what I am up to, but I don’t think it’ that many. But that’s mainly because I forbid myself to write too much when I have classes, otherwise I would do no work, haha.
      I love blogging :D But I also love writing. Since I am on holidays now, I fully intend to write as much as possible!
      Thank you, Ramisa! I am glad you liked it ^.^

  4. livvvy75 says:

    I had NO idea so many people liked to read AND write! I adore writing, I have had books on the go since I was very little. In my opinion, people not only write to get published but also for fun as well. Considering the effort and time that goes into a novel, without the guarantee of success, you kind of have to think that the author has to enjoy it, even if it’s just a little bit.

    • I know, right! I was blown away with how many bloggers are participating in NaNoWriMo!
      Oh, of course. Not every piece that I write is in the hopes of being published. Writing for your own enjoyment is very important!
      Yes, exactly. I love writing more than almost anything, and I think that’s the way it has to be!

  5. I love both reading and writing! I want to be a published author too. However, I think being a reader doesn’t always lead to being a writer. I have lots of friends who love to read but they don’t like writing that much. :))
    your blog is so pretty <3 love love love it!

    Btw, are you interested in joining Dreamy December Days Readathon? It’ll be fun and there will be lots of prizes!

  6. macjam47 says:

    So glad to hear you want to write a book. I am sure I won’t be the only one waiting for updates on your progress.

  7. I don’t necessarily think that all readers want to be writers/are good at writing. I mean, reading is what I love. I also enjoy writing every once in a while, but I’m not dedicated enough to finish a story, let alone an entire novel!

    Anyway, good luck with your writing! I’ll definitely be one of your first readers if you decide to publish anything. :)

    • It’s very difficult to finish a novel. I have started SO many, and left them unfinished for a variety of reasons.
      I have yet to have someone comment that does not like writing, though! I am interested to see if I will.

      Thank you very much! :D I am hoping to publish the novel I am writing at the moment. It’s the one I’ve stuck with for the longest, and the one I am most passionate about. Hopefully it will happen!

  8. Kelley says:

    Great topic, Chiara! I’ve been wondering this a lot lately — especially since I started book blogging. I think in this community there is a lot of both going on. So many of us book bloggers are voracious readers. We love the stories, we love the characters, we love the craft, and we love the culture. I used to dabble in writing as a teenager but never anything too long or too serious (it was mostly bad poetry). I’ve already really appreciated the written word, though, and the beautiful CRAFT of it, you know? However, since I’ve gotten deeper into the book blogging community — and especially the YA community — two things have happened. 1: I developed an insatiable appetite for reading (I loved it before, but now it’s kind of ridiculous). 2: I surrounded myself with so many stories and so much writing that I started thing maybe I want to do it too.

    I think there’s definitely a draw of like to like, you know? It makes sense that writers would love to read and be more likely to be bookworms. But I also think that surrounding yourself with something you love and something that is so inspiring, can encourage you to try it too. It’s like working at an art museum for so long that you eventually develop a desire to try creating your own art, you know?

    No matter what, I love it. I love it all. :)

    • Thank you, Kelley! I’m glad you liked it :)

      But writing your ‘bad’ poetry as a teenager probably helped hone your writing skills! I’ve loved both ridiculously since a young age, so I like to hear stories about people becoming more in love with reading, or writing, or both! It’s interesting :) I definitely think if I was not already in love with writing, book blogging probably inspired me to do so.

      I definitely agree with you. Surrounding yourself with your passion may very well inspire you to contribute to that world. Every time I listen to my favourite acoustic bands, it inspires me to pick up my guitar again, haha!

      I love it all, as well :D

  9. Shannelle C. says:

    I’ve tried writing, but the story never seemed to be the one for me. I just never get past a few words. I’m just hoping that I get the idea that would just motivate me to write.

  10. I think the two are definitely intertwined. The people who become passionate filmmakers grew up as passionate film watchers. The most passionate artists appreciate good art. A person with a passion for the written word may very well grow up to be a writer, but won’t necessarily. There are plenty of movie lovers who never want to pick up a camera, or music lovers that never want to play an instrument. A happy reader doesn’t necessarily become a writer, but a writer who doesn’t read won’t have much of a career.

    • I love this comment! :D
      I definitely agree that a writer should definitely be a reader. I think reading enhances many aspects of a writer’s writing. It increases the vocabulary, the ability to weave a story etc etc.
      I must say that I have never come across an author who does not read. It would be truly odd if I did!

  11. Anya says:

    I am 100% an “only reader.” I have no desire to write a fiction novel ever and I don’t think I’d really be able to anyway. I don’t have ideas flowing out of my brain. I do, however, write a lot for work since I’m in academia. I’m expected to write 6-ish papers to be published a year and will hopefully write some pop-sci books and textbooks someday. Maybe that drains my need to write other things? I don’t think so since they are very different types of writing. Anyway, I get annoyed with a couple of haters I’ve seen recently talking about how crabby book bloggers are just jaded that they can’t get published and I’m sitting here saying “Uhhh… I don’t want to get published?” ;-)

    • Ooo! The first one :D
      Academic writing is so very different from fiction writing! I am always astounded when I am writing university scientific papers, that I can then go on to write prose and the such. It’s odd, haha!
      Haters gonna hate, as the saying goes. I think they just love to pick on people for no real reason at all. It’s kind of pitiful, to be honest.
      But yes! Not every book blogger is a writer, and if they are, they might not even want to be published!

  12. alice-jane says:

    I’ve disliked writing for a long time, but I’ve always loved to read. It wasn’t until late middle school/early high school that I discovered the beauty of writing by writing for myself (hello teenage angst!). While I don’t blog to be published, I don’t see anything wrong with blogging to get published. So many other types of blogging (fashion, art, etc) is only an extension of an existing business and only serves to drive traffic to that.

    • I think a lot of people discover writing when they are teenagers! I know that’s when I wrote the most.
      I’ve never thought of blogging as a way to get published. I just wanted to share my love of books with like-minded people! But I can kind of understand why some people would use it as a way to make a name for themselves.

  13. flipthatpage says:

    Ooooh this was a great topic Chiara! :D I know I’ve told you before that I’ve written a few short stories, but none of them are works I’m particularly proud of– I do remember having loads of fun writing them down though! So I guess in my case, writing is more of a hobby. Unlike so many of the people I’ve met online (you included!), I don’t really have any dreams of becoming a published author. I know it’s hard to get your name out there, but that’s far from my issue, actually. I just think I’m paving a way towards a different path altogether :D I find it cool though, that many readers have dreams of becoming authors, because it’s a big goal and I love how people are dreaming big like that. And I’d LOVE to read your work you know ;) So I guess reader does not necessarily equal writer, at least in my case, but it’s great if a person can manage to be both. They DO come in conjunction if you ask me! :)

    • Thank you, dearest Jasmine! <3
      And I still want to read something of yours! You are so talented, I cannot imagine anything you write being non-pride worthy! Writing is always fun, in my opinion :D
      Being an author is a really big dream! I'm still deciding on whether or not I'm gong to go traditional or indie publishing D:
      I know, I know! I just got accepted into an online zine that is coming out soon, so I will be sure to send you the link (and I'll probably write a blog post about it, too, haha!).
      It is great if they can manage both, and achieve both :D
      As always, thank you for your lovely comments <3 <3

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