"The real importance of reading is that
it creates an ease and intimacy with
the process of writing; one comes to
the country of the writer with one's papers
and identification pretty much in order.
Constant reading will pull you into a place
(a mind-set, if you like the phrase) where
you can write eagerly and without
self-consciousness. It also offers you
a constantly growing knowledge of
what has been done and what hasn't,
what is trite and what is fresh, what works
and what just lies there dying (or dead)
on the page.
The more you read, the less apt you are
to make a fool of yourself with your pen
or word processor. . . .
'[R]ead a lot, write a lot' is the