Tuesday, February 23, 2016
Does Writing Make Better Readers?
Yes, you read that right. We all know reading makes us better writers but can writing make us better readers? And what does being a "better" reader even mean?
As some of you know, I've been friends with Suey for sometime. 10+ years, I think, and we both can say with a certainty about each other that: I'm stingy with my ratings and Suey is generous with hers.
It's actually a little joke at our book club that Suey loves everything. However, I've noticed something. Lately my dear friend has been trying her hand at writing. I'm so happy for her because she's talked about it for years and now, finally, she's jumping in. She's going to conferences, writing groups and even sent out one of her manuscripts to beta readers! Once upon a time I wrote. Not so much now but when I wrote I didn't do these things. I just read How To books and wrote....quietly...and tried not to talk about it. So, I'm very proud of Suey for just jumping in and fulfilling her dream.
So back to that thing I noticed. Suey is not being so generous with her ratings anymore. I always blame my stingy ratings and critical thinking towards books on my past days of writing and reading those How To books. I knew all the rules and when I saw bad writing I knew it was bad writing and was disgusted. So, getting a good rating from me was a little more work. So, is Suey being a little more guarded with her ratings because now, a book isn't just a book? It's all these words and there are rules that, while not necessary, do make writing better.
I guess we'll never know. Suey and I have discussed this a little and she's not so sure she's being stingy with her ratings. But I've also noticed that since I haven't written for several years now that I'm not nearly as critical with my ratings anymore. So, there may just be something to all this. What do you think? Does writing make you a better (aka critical) reader?