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Don’t Call Yourself a Writer if You Are Not Reading

Get into the habit of reading. Start today. To lead, you need to read.


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Yousuf Rafi

4 months ago | 2 min read
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Quit. Quit. Quit. If you don’t want to read.

You cannot drive a car with no fuel. Unless it’s an electric car, well, then you need to charge it. Reading is fuel for the writer. If you plan to become a writer, you need to read a lot.

And I am not talking about casual reading. I mean reading, re-reading, highlighting, gathering ideas, analyzing content, and understanding the pattern.

Ron Friedman, in his latest book, Decoding Greatness, talks about reverse engineering, which means backtracking a successful story, book, or blog.

Take a successful book, note the book's length, writing style, and what makes the book intriguing. Every successful book has a pattern. If you can figure out the pattern, you can become a successful writer.

You can do reserve engineering with everything successful. Find the pattern, and you can replicate it in any field.

To succeed as a writer, you must read volumes of content. Because when you read a lot of ideas, your brain will present with new ideas to write about.

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If you love reading books, subscribe to the Ryan Holiday reading email list, and you’ll get book recommendations in your inbox for every book.

How to take out time for reading when you don’t have the time?

Writing is my first love. I am a full-time writer, plus I also do freelance and occasionally write on Medium. Now, I can say that I don’t have time to write. But since I love writing so, I take out time for it.

The same goes for reading. You take out time for Netflix, gossip, tea talk, browsing social media, so you can easily take out time for reading.

Here are some ways in which you can take out time to read:

  • Sleep one hour late and read for half an hour before you get down to sleep.
  • Wake one hour before you normally do and read for an hour.
  • Keep a book/ebook with you at all times and when you get a little free time, start reading.
  • Plan your reading time. One hour each day, same time. Your brain will go into reading mode and you’ll easily remember more of what you read.
  • If you commute by car, listen to an audiobook or a podcast.
  • Join a book club. There is a various book club on social media or even in your local area. Find them and join them.
  • Be friends with someone who loves books. Follow me on LinkedIn, and we can discuss various books.

Get into the habit of reading. Start today. To lead, you need to read.

“Reading changes your life. Reading unlocks worlds unknown or forgotten, taking travelers around the world and through time. Reading helps you escape the confines of school and pursue your own education.” ~Donalyn Miller

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