How to read like a writer

When reading for pleasure, readers do not pay close attention to the inner workings of the text.

There’s a thing many casual readers fail to see, the most important of which is that every piece of writing has been created with a purpose in mind. Be it a novel, a news article, or a company blog post.

Every writer has an agenda.

While practice makes perfect, it’s also essential to learn how others create engaging pieces of writing. Improve your own writing skills by learning from others. A way to do that is to learn how to read like a writer.

What makes a story tick? What makes an article compelling and a novel impossible to put down?

Take a text you’ve already read and enjoyed. Re-read it carefully, paying close attention to what makes it unique. What techniques does the author use to carry the meaning across? How do they keep you hooked? It might be the structure of the text, a literary device, or even a single word that draws the reader’s attention.

Make annotations on the margins. Take notes on your cell phone. Even take out the good, old trusty pen and paper. Put down your observations as you read, and go through them once you’re done.

You might be amazed by what you find out.

By analyzing the inner workings of the text, you can improve your own style and hone your skills.

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