On Reading for Writing – Junot Diaz

I’m old enough and experienced enough to know when I’m reading to avoid. And then you gotta get back to work. And I also know — you get old enough, you know when you’re forcing the writing, so you need to go hit the books.

via Junot Díaz Hates Writing Short Stories – NYTimes.com.

A couple of years ago I discovered Ray Bradbury’s prescription for creativity and vowed to read more short stories. Soon I was drowning in ideas. This is the second half of what Junot Diaz is talking out here.

But Diaz makes an really interesting point in the first half of the quote.

Sometimes we ‘read to avoid’.

  • We read to avoid doing the work.
  • We read to avoid starting.
  • We read to feel like we’re being productive when really we should be writing.

How do you balance the reading and writing parts of your life? What is the most productive reading you do? The least productive? Share your thoughts in the comments, below. Let’s talk about this!