A long time ago, someone told me, “The best writers are great readers.”
The thinking was that if you read a lot — and read good stuff — you’ll figure out the English language works, how to develop an argument, how to construct a persuasive claim.
Fair enough. I think there’s truth there.
But more recently, someone else told me, “You can’t be a reader and a writer. There isn’t enough time. You have to choose.”
And I think this latter person was right, too. Maybe more right.
I’m at the point where I need to quit pecking away at Why Pray? in my free time. I need to write every day, no exceptions. I need to write thousands of words in the coming months, and then go back over the words and revise, revise, revise.
I am beginning to think that it’s true: If I want to be a writer — a truly good writer — I probably cannot be a reader, at least not the extent that I’d like to be.