How Being a Great Reader Makes You a Better Writer

Reading well-written texts makes you a better writer. If you want to writer, start by reading.


Reading classic texts by authors like Dickens, Twain, or Leacock is part of education in many parts of the world today. It was certainly part of the education that I was given in the 80s, and my own daughters are now following a similar path of reading and learning from great texts.




A classical education has traditionally placed great emphasis on reading texts that were chosen for the skill of their authors and the impact the writers’ words have had on society. Students are not only encouraged to read and study great novels, short stories, poems, and plays but often also to emulate the style of the writer they are studying.

We know that both reading good literature and attempting to follow its example can result in better writing for the student. It is especially important for anyone who wants to write for public consumption. If you are going to write a personal blog, submit news stories to the local paper, or write articles on a social blogging website, the best thing you can do is to read. And read a lot!

We know that both reading good literature and attempting to follow its example can result in better writing for the student. It is especially important for anyone who wants to write for public consumption. If you are going to write a personal blog, submit news stories to the local paper, or write articles on a social blogging website, the best thing you can do is to read. And read a lot!




In fact, most publications will expect that you’ve read a number of their issues before submitting a query or manuscript. They know that reading their published material will help you to learn what kind of content they’re looking for.

“If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot.”
~ Stephen King

How Reading Makes You a Better Writer

Reading helps you to develop a stronger sense of the English language. If you are going to write in English, you must read in English. Read news stories online, read magazines and novels, read anything you can get your hands on – even the label on the cereal box!

Reading grammatically correct texts helps you to:

  • Get a better sense of English syntax – the word order of a grammatically correct sentence or question;
  • See words in print that you might only hear in conversation. This is particularly important because English has some strange spellings!
  • Begin to distinguish between homophones, words that sound alike but are spelled differently and have different meanings;
  • Get a better grasp of punctuation, capitalization, verb tense, and formation of possessives and plurals – the mechanics of the English language
  • Encounter idioms that might be new to you, and learn how to use descriptive words in a sentence;
  • Develop a feel for the way English flows so you will know when a text sounds natural – and when it doesn’t.

Now that you learned how reading could make you a better writer, you might also want to check also how keywords can help boost your articles’ reach on search engines. If your writing for social media audiences, you can also want to read how to optimize blog post for social media.




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