I met a bunch of aspiring young writers yesterday, all keen to write a book.
The first question I asked them: How many books have you read in the last month?
To me, reading is crucial, I want to know how much a person reads before I decide if they’re wasting their time in a writing class.
13 of the students said None.
1 said Two
1 said Seven.
My own answer: Eleven.
Yes, I’ve been on a wheelchair this last month, and my social life consisted of my fish, my husband and my weekly household help– but the number of books I usually read in a week are seldom less than two, even when I have a full-fledged routine. Reading is part of who I am.
I mentioned this to the young writers, and they stared. Not surprisingly the only ones who came up with any writing in the hour I spent with them were the two readers.
Non-readers don’t write. According to me, it is that simple.
I’ve never met or heard of any writers who don’t like to read– have you?