Are you feeling desperate to improve your essay writing skills? One way most professional writers hone their craft is by reading. Making friends with a book inspires aspiring authors to learn from the materials they consume.
Hence, studying the work of other writers, from popular fiction to the classics, will help foster your imagination, stimulate new ideas, free you from boring tropes, and inspire you to “pen” something unforgettable.
Develop strong reading habits because you cannot go wrong when you pick up a book. There’s no disputing that good readers are likely to become good writers. Here are five ways pouring through the written word could improve your essay writing skills.
- Fosters Critical Thinking Skills
Do you find yourself dreading the deadline when your teacher assigns an essay? If you’re in this boat, you can’t help but lament to a friend and say, “please do my homework for me!” However, it doesn’t have to be this way if you develop your essay writing skills through the help of other printed subject matter.
If you have the skills to assess any body of written work critically, you can harness the same thoughtfulness in your assignments. That’s why it’s essential to determine what qualities create good writing results because these works can motivate you. It would help to ask yourself the following questions as you read:
- Is this piece of work written well? Why do you think this way?
- What is the background of the author and the known feedback of readers?
- How is the character development in this book you are reading?
- Is the author grounded on a particular theme or subtext?
- Provides Much-Needed Inspiration
Devouring different materials, whether biography, romance novels, or news articles, inspires as it exposes you to various writing styles. Consuming a broad range of literature introduces you to multiple techniques such as:
- Ways of telling a story like traditional or non-chronological
- Various methods of describing characters
- Different writing voices using I, you, and they perspective
- See common themes that make a particular genre successful
Moreover, when you love a particular work, it is inevitable to echo the voice in your writing. This is entirely different from plagiarism, wherein you copy word for word. This means picking up other people’s work enables you to fully comprehend how you can use numerous writing techniques with the best effect. As a result, you can look forward to an optimal outcome in the form of a good grade.
At the same time, pouring over the written words of others shows you the style choices and mechanics that make specific genres appeal to an audience. When you approach other written works with a critical eye, this eventually helps you develop your style.
- Helps You Study Grammar With Better Context
Going through a grammar textbook can be off-putting, especially if you’re not into the technical aspects of linguistics. However, perusing a short story, opinion piece, blog post, or novel is an avenue for you to study grammar without stress. These works provide context while reinforcing correct grammar in your head.
Published materials, especially printed books, have undergone much editing and rewriting before they’re released to the public. Thus, you can count on these publications to:
- Communicate their message effectively
- Provide the best grammar and syntax
- Spot how grammar conventions and punctuations are used
Spare yourself from working through a formal grammar book by getting lost in another author’s book. Usually, people feel ambivalent about their written outputs because of grammar concerns. But if you love to get lost in words, you can improve your skills and raise confidence in your writing.
- Promotes a Robust Vocabulary
When writing an essay, having a good command of the language with an expansive vocabulary helps. After all, words are essential for conveying information and ideas. A good vocabulary allows the writer to:
- Formulate more engaging and exciting sentences
- Avoid repeating similar words in a sentence or paragraph
- Use alternate phrasing to make the written piece more pleasant to read
- Enhance accuracy by using the correct jargon and terminologies in papers
If you have an excellent vocabulary, you get your message across and help your reader understand your essay. Remember that appropriate words could significantly impact how your ideas are expressed and interpreted, especially for position papers or argumentative essays.
Utilizing an appropriate term will help enhance your writing assignment. At the same time, this demonstrates your knowledge of the topic. This shows you’ve successfully applied what you’ve learned in school.
- Sparks Original Ideas
When you commit to making reading a habit, you constantly expose yourself to fresh ideas. This will inevitably spark your creative juices into flowing, which may help with your next writing assignment. You can fully optimize the benefits of reading if you make it a routine and do it daily.
You don’t have to read dull stuff you dislike but choose materials that hook your interest and spark your joy. When you pick up works that excite you, time flies, and you won’t even notice that you’ve read so many pages already. Staying disciplined provides you with lots of opportunities to see ideas ignite something within you.
You can then use this inspiration as fuel to blend your own words. Being a voracious reader doesn’t mean you copy other authors’ works or ideas. Often, they help you come up with brilliant ideas you can call your own.
If you want to raise your writing bar, seek inspiration from paperbacks, essays, memoirs, etc. It’s akin to athletes who are conditioned to compete with someone with more skill because it forces them to strive for a higher competency level. Reading published work will give you the exposure you need to improve your craftsmanship.
More importantly, the fine art of reading is the best reminder that both reading and writing are not chores. Your favorite books reinforce the joy that the written word gives humankind. Learning how to enjoy the work of others is rewarding because this also serves as an avenue for you to enjoy carefully curating your writing tasks.