TBR (noun): to be read.
The entity that is the TBR comes in various forms. There’s the TBR list; which some keep in spreadsheets, some use Goodreads, and others *gasp* keep a list in their mind. There’s also the TBR pile. Piles really, because honestly, where there’s one there’s certainly more. You can also toss in the TBR stack, TBR shelf, and TBR cart.
Currently, I have 1,278 books on my Goodreads TBR list, 57 in my physical TBR stacks around the house, 6 waiting in my Kindle’s TBR queue, and 1 in my TBR-carry-along, aka my purse.
Clearly, I have a book hoarding problem. But that’s not the topic of the week, this week it’s all about reading.
Reading’s an escape, a hobby, a pastime, a chore. It’s a hundred other things that can change by the moment and is also a necessity if you’re an author. Yet, I see many writers posting comments that they don’t read.
A writer who doesn’t read is like a movie producer who doesn’t watch TV or motion pictures, like a chef who never eats out. A writer who doesn’t read is like a marketer who never studies another’s successful launch, like a product engineer who never uses or tests another company’s items. A writer who doesn’t read will never be as great as they could be.
“If you don’t have time to read,
you don’t have the time or the tools to write.
Simple as that.”
~Stephen King, On Writing
I’m addicted to reading, always have been. And when there's been too much time since cracking open a book I start to crave the escape. Yes, as a writer there are times you have to buckle down, editing cave anyone, and reading takes a backseat.
Editing Cave (noun): a place where time and space are suspended.
When one enters, they are unable to leave until such a time when they can produce a finished product. Warning; food and beverages that pass into the editing cave never return.
But after a time of famine you have to refill the well, as we’ve blogged about before, which you can read here, and binge on reading. Reading will stimulate the imagination. Reading will draw you down new paths you didn’t know you needed in your own writing. Reading will give you the mental break you crave after a trip to the editing cave.
I have a book hoarding problem, but I don’t merely collect them. I read them. One or five at a time, I read them, and sometimes re-read and re-read them.
A romance gives melts my heart and makes me more cuddly. A fantasy leads me to the woods and lets me dream. A sci-fi takes my imagination places I’d never believed I’d find. A thriller makes my heart pound. A mystery makes my mind question and seek answers. And all of these allow me to see people through their eyes, to feel the agony of their lives, to understand what drives them and is important to them.
Tell me, what have you been reading? Have you recently read something that gave you an ah-ha moment? Or maybe a book that took you away from your daily stress?