I don’t even know why I have to explain this but that’s the sad reality we live in. Here’s why:
- It teaches you the rules of your craft.
- It teaches you how to break said rules.
- It teaches you new words, which are the main ingredients of your craft.
- It teaches you empathy, which you will need bucketloads of in order to speak about the human experience.
- Everything has already been said. You can only find a new way of saying it if you know what others have done before you.
- All stories have also been told. You can only find a new way of creating them if you know what others have done before you.
- Intertextuality is really, really fun.
- Because you’re not more talented than the summation of all of humanity’s artistic efforts.
- Because why are you even trying to produce something you don’t even enjoy?
- Because you will look like an ignorant doofus in front of your peers. No one, and I mean no one, will see your disdain for reading as an expression of a ‘pure’ writer. They’ll see it as the cringe-worthy moment of a dilettante.