Now that The Forget-Me-Nots is published, it's time to re-evaluate my goals and develop my next projects. Reading remains a top priority for this writer, and it is an excellent place to start after completing a long-term endeavor. The 5 W's build the understanding about the reasons reading is critical to my writing process.
When should I read?
Just as writers must key into their best writing moments, they must find their best reading moments. Bedtime and two o'clock in the afternoon are not the best times for me to have productive reading time. I could be reading the most compelling novel and fall asleep mid-paragraph! It is important to choose optimum reading times. I am still developing mine. But, I know from experience that my best times are in the morning.
Where should I read?
If bedtime and two o'clock are not my best times, it is easy to assess that my bed or the couch are not the best places for me to read. The best places for me to read are in the middle of a coffee shop or at the kitchen table. I'm upright. I'm engaged with my surroundings. Sometimes I am interrupted. Yet, reading in a public area builds tolerance for another important skill--writing in a public area.
How should I read?
Read with a blank page and a writing instrument nearby. I prefer paper and pencil when I am reading spiritual books. But, I also have my computer nearby while I am reading poetry or novels. Often times a scene or a line will inspire my own writing. So having the necessary tools nearby is critical to the reading-writing process.
What should I read?
Reading vastly and broadly is essential for writers. I tend to read four to six books at a time. They range in genre from novels to poetry and in subject from spiritual disciplines to dog training. I find I am researching constantly on the Internet, either for personal insight or for project development. Being involved in book clubs helps build my reading list and keep it varied, too.
Why should I read?
Reading is writing's complement. I often say that if I am not reading poetry then I am not writing poetry. The same holds true for writing any genre. Several books have been written on this subject. I encourage anyone interested in being a writer to read about being a writer. Much wisdom can be gleaned from the experience of others.
Time to book that reading time into my schedule now! More to come on what I am reading and how it is inspiring my next project.
Whether you are an avid reader, involved in a book club, or both, please consider adding The Forget-Me-Nots to your reading list. Questions are available at the end of the book for personal reflection and group discussion.