Read for pleasure, not for pain

book-863418__180When I first started writing I learned two things very quickly: I wasn’t very fast and I wasn’t very good. On great advice I took a writing course, followed by many others until I felt confident to persevere on my own. One reoccurring theme suggested by many of the instructor had to do with honing your craft and voice by writing and reading lots.

After perusing the book store shelves in the same genre I wrote, I found several books that book-759873__180I felt certain would give me the insight and knowledge I needed to understand worthy writing. I settled down on the couch with a book in one hand and tea in the other ready to have my mind opened to wonderful and diverse worlds.

However, there was a catch, not all books are created equally. While I loved some books so much I ran out to buy more from those authors, there were also those that I would painfully drag myself through from chapter to chapter until I just couldn’t take it anymore.

At first I felt disappointed in myself for not continuing till the end. I’d paid good money for that book, damn it, and I was determined to see it through to the end. Then I came to stack-of-books-1001655__180the realization that like all relationships that don’t seem to be working, sometimes it’s best to cut your losses and move on.

Its okay to stop reading once you’ve realized it’s not something you’re enjoying. Even with those books you dropped there are important lessons for you to learn as a writer, and taking these with you can make your next read even better.

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