If there is one universal advice for writers, it would be “you have to read to be a writer.”
Is that TRUE?
UMM, OBVIOUSLY YES.
It’s nonsensical to think that you can be a writer without reading a thing in your life. That’s illogical.
But the real question is – how much and what to read??
We’ll tackle these one at a time (I would do two at a time but alas! I am not an octopus).
How much do you need to read as a writer?
I think this is a very personal question. It depends on two things: your speed as a reader, and how much time you have on your hands.
You can’t read more than your stomach can take (or something along those lines).
What I’m trying to say is, you don’t have to be some crazy bookworm that reads 200 books per year, or races through a book in days. You. Just. Need. To. Read.
Don’t be afraid to live within your limits. If you don’t have a lot of time, can’t stay up till 2 am, that’s ok. Just read.
But what to read???
ANYTHING. JUST READ ALL THE BOOKS.
I’m serious. Yes, yes, yes, you should obviously read within your age group and genre. But you should also read outside your genre. Read YA. Read adult. Read fiction and nonfiction. Read books about vegetables or ancient Rome. Read space operas and thrillers.
There is no draw back to reading a wide variety. So do it!!
Yes, you do have to read. No, don’t stress about it.