Reading vs writing

Specifics about craft, talent, technique, etc.
Spiraledpen
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Reading vs writing

Postby Spiraledpen » Mon Oct 29, 2018 7:37 pm

To all-

I Looked around the forum and didn’t see anything that came close to this curious question, how much time do you spend reading and how much time writing?
The time I have available is very short and I’ve wondered how much time do you devote to each? Which one appears to use more time?
Every new writer that enters this world of writing sees a variety of dazzling displays of knowledge and skills. The little fish sees the big pond filled with big fish and says “I have to swim in that?!”
Answering these questions can help those of us starting out see how to become one of those big fish. Perhaps even gaining a little insight on the many ways writers find the time to do both.

My first big forum post

Spiraledpen

P.S. just in case you’re worried about the metaphor, the big fish here don’t eat the little fish! (I hope...) wotf001


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Truth is a three edged sword.

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orbivillein
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Re: Reading vs writing

Postby orbivillein » Tue Oct 30, 2018 8:10 am

Reading and study of writing overall, plus motion picture narratives, and other arts that inform writing growth, editor work, etc., for me, consume a hundred times more time than narrative creation.

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morganb
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Re: Reading vs writing

Postby morganb » Tue Oct 30, 2018 10:27 am

I write on my lunch hour during the day. I usually head over to the library or Panera or Starbucks and TYPE TYPE TYPE. Depending on how soon I wake up before my alarm goes off in the morning, I might also get another thirty or sixty minutes in before work too. In all, at least one hour a day, sometimes two. I try to squeeze more in on the weekends if I can, but weekends are busy catching up on the rest of my life and responsibilities.

I listen to audiobooks on my morning and evening commutes to and from the office. It's thirty minutes each way, so there's an hour. I also have at least one book and a magazine on my nightstand, and I read for maybe an hour or so before bedtime.

Sometimes it's more (business trips and airplanes were made for reading and writing and make for some AMAZING people-watching opportunities). Sometimes it's less. But those are fairly reliable averages for me during a typical week.

~Morgan
"If you can do it for joy, you can do it forever."
- Stephen King

Drop me a line at https://morganbroadhead.com

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aidanka
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Re: Reading vs writing

Postby aidanka » Wed Nov 07, 2018 11:34 am

I also wonder about same thing. wotf002 wotf008
I spent last year reading at least 3-4 hours a day. (English is not my first, or even second language).
The problem is if I read something I cannot do anything other than reading. If I start to write same goes there I can't read even a page.

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MattDovey
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Re: Reading vs writing

Postby MattDovey » Thu Nov 08, 2018 5:17 am

Most of my reading now is audiobooks through Audible, as I have an hour's commute each way. I'll also read on my Kindle some nights, but that tends to be short fiction magazines before sleep. Writing tends to be 2-3 hours a night on weeknights, so I guess it's about 50-50.

You can't write without reading, though. I saw someone else recently describe it as reading is breathing in, writing is breathing out. You can't disconnect them. (Well, you can read and not write, but you know what I mean.)
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Harion
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Re: Reading vs writing

Postby Harion » Sun Nov 11, 2018 12:17 am

MattDovey wrote:You can't write without reading, though. I saw someone else recently describe it as reading is breathing in, writing is breathing out. You can't disconnect them. (Well, you can read and not write, but you know what I mean.)

I love this analogy. WIll use this in my teaching classes.
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Amber Michelle
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Re: Reading vs writing

Postby Amber Michelle » Thu Nov 15, 2018 6:35 pm

Since I'm a contractor, there are periods I can spend entire days reading or writing, and then others that won't allow more than thirty minutes for each. I try to meet a certain word count most days of the week, and fit that in wherever I can between work and other obligations. However, when it comes to reading, I binge: I won't touch a book for five months, but in June I'll start reading nonstop and that will go on for the rest of the year.

The end result is that I read a lot, but only part of the time. Since I tend to read quickly, I'm not sure how much good it does me.
Website: Writing on the Wallpaper
"If you can't annoy somebody, there is little point in writing." --Kingsley Amis

storysinger
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Re: Reading vs writing

Postby storysinger » Sun Jan 06, 2019 7:28 am

I was at a local thrift store and found a novel written by Anne McCaffrey, The Rowan.
With my entry to wotf taken care of I had time to read. wotf029 I've read so many of her story's in the past.

I never realized it before but writing from a woman's point of view adds a different dimension to the story.

In the story her character loses her virginity, eventually gets pregnant and has a baby, all written by an author who had been there and done that.

A man would have to study quite a bit to compete with actual experience. I had to consult a dictionary for some of the words in her story.
The list was over thirty by the time I finished the book.
HM-1
Today's science fiction is tomorrow's reality.
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johnprater
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Re: Reading vs writing

Postby johnprater » Thu Jan 24, 2019 12:46 am

For me, it's important to read as much as you can. I think that reading is vital to the quality of your writings. You can spend many hours reading and eventually you will get a great paper. However, it's also important to practice writing because you can't just sit and write something great without devoting some time to it.

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morganb
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Re: Reading vs writing

Postby morganb » Thu Jan 24, 2019 4:55 am

One of the exercises I've found to be helpful is to find a story--or a passage of a story--that was done very well. Then I go through and try to deconstruct what made it so effective: what words did the author use, how did he arrange their order, what senses were involved, etc. It's a pretty fun activity.

~Morgan
"If you can do it for joy, you can do it forever."
- Stephen King

Drop me a line at https://morganbroadhead.com

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R x 4

storysinger
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Re: Reading vs writing

Postby storysinger » Thu Jan 24, 2019 11:37 am

I just finished reading Algis Budry's Writing to the Point. Very good stuff.
I plan to read it again while taking notes the second time through.
My five-point plan has now expanded to seven. That is what I learned from his lesson.
HM-1
Today's science fiction is tomorrow's reality.
D.R.Sweeney

aradralami
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Re: Reading vs writing

Postby aradralami » Sun Feb 17, 2019 1:13 am

Depends actually.

You need to do both with a proper proportional base. Do more of reading, always the best.

Writing is the active form of reading. You'll have the depth of things you want to write about only when you have read thoroughly or heard efficiently or know how to express it in the right way.

Let me put the perspective of the writer in me. Writing is love. It is the extreme act of revelation. It's about freedom. It's about outburst of happiness when the thought flows and you just write it down.

Coming to the reader in me. Reading is a train to a fantasy land. A place you could be without having to have buy a ticket or move yourself. All you need is just, a book, and interesting pages to flip.

GabrielSi
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Re: Reading vs writing

Postby GabrielSi » Sat Mar 16, 2019 6:56 am

I think you need both, but never underestimate the sheer power of practice. The more you write, the better you'll get at it. Just like with pretty much anything else.

onlyfro
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Re: Reading vs writing

Postby onlyfro » Tue Apr 30, 2019 4:45 am

Additionally, these days I have committed to splitting my reading between professional novels and amateur stories.

1. If I want people to read my amateur work, then the least I can do is read other amateur work.
2. Reading good literature helps me learn what to emulate; reading bad literature teaches me what to avoid doing.
3. Reading amateur submissions helps me understand the literature market, about what genres are in demand or are overstaffed.


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