This is a question I find a lot of people grapple with, whether they be adults, teenagers or children. The love of reading, of transporting yourself into a different world, is a way to escape. Writing, whether it be an analytic essay or the next epic adventure, requires the ability to reach into your mind and actively confront yourself – and that is not an easy feat to manage.
Part of being able to write is to have your thoughts organized in your mind. This actually may prove incredibly difficult for a reader to do. Our minds are often going all over the place at any given moment, reliving stories or day dreaming some of our own. Readers are dreamers so it makes sense that our thoughts naturally flow and are sometimes difficult to pin down. That’s okay – that’s what lists are for!
In order to better organize your thoughts, start out simple. Make a list of what you really think about the subject you are about to write about. This works for anything, whether it be a book report or a short story. How do you feel? Getting in touch with those thoughts and feelings will make your task a much more manageable one.
You then have to reach into those thoughts, turn them around in your brain and transpose them into words on a page. Do you feel like things sound better in your head then when you write them into words? That’s because thinking thoughts is easier than seeing them printed before you. But that’s okay! A lot of people get discouraged when their thoughts don’t sound right the first time around – but it’s important to get them out, so you can see them before you and dig in to mush them around and discover what you really think.
Finally, you can become a more active reader. Yes, it is so easy to get caught up in the worlds and words that you don’t want to step out, but what if you did? Next time you’re reading a novel or an article, take a step back and look at what the writer is doing. Question them in your mind and give yourself some answers. Why did the author choose that word? Would you have chosen a different one? This will help you engage with the work and see the tricks that writers use in order to make their work unique.
Happy reading and writing! And as always, best of luck.