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Reading is Precursor to Writing - Response to Word Challenge

Umesh is a freelance writer contributing his creative writings on varied subjects in various sites and portals in the internet.

Preface

Every week our fellow writer Brenda Arledge gives us a word challenging us to produce creative writing on that. For the week-42 she has chosen the word 'writing'.

Being a writer this caught my attention and I was just pondering as to what could I contribute to this simple but challenging word. I just tried to remember when in my life I started writing. Since my school days, I was having an interest in reading a variety of books and that habit was maintained even when I settled in a job where I used to get little time pursuing my hobby of reading. During that time except for writing some technical papers, I had no experience of writing.

It was only after my retirement that it struck me that if I tried I could write something especially based on my voluminous readings made in the past. This led me to believe that if a person had read a large number of books and he tries to utilise that knowledge and learning with a slight effort he would be successful in the field of writing.

My journey in writing started only from the year 2014 when I started to contribute in a humble way to many websites in a variety of ways like forum discussions, answering questions, writing poems, articles etc and I got an opportunity to contribute educational material in one of the Indian educational sites where I learnt the basics of creative writing. Then I started my blog also and joined some sites for my creative pursuits. Seeing the quality articles on some sites like Hubpages I was tempted to try to get my work published in them and I am regularly getting my articles featured in Hubpages.

In this poem, I have tried to depict the transformation of a voracious reader into a regular writer and many authors might agree with me on my understandings but it is also true that one can start writing early in one's life simultaneously with reading. Still, I believe that a good reader has also got the potential to become a good writer. Only thing is that he has to do some serious work in this direction.

Reading is Precursor to writing

When I was a child,

I read the story of Tortoise and Hare.

It gave me the idea of competitions,

Which were not fair.


When I was in my school,

I read the story of Tom Sawyer.

It gave me the idea,

How the intelligent could take work from others.


When I was in college,

I read the story of Gulliver's Travel.

It gave me the idea that in a fantasy book,

Every conjecture was possible.


Then I got an opportunity to go through,

The book titled Treasure Island.

I learnt how to decode cryptic messages,

Under my own hand.


Completing my education and securing a job,

I happened to read How Much Land Does A Man Require.

It taught me a beautiful lesson,

As to how much wealth in my life should I aspire.


I got married and then read,

The Gift of Magi an unusual story.

I could understand that in a married life,

Mutual sacrifice only could bring glory.


The voracity of my reading introduced me,

To the magnificent works by so many good authors.

I realised that the ocean of books is quite vast,

And is like unlimited mental fodders.


Then one day a creative thought struck me,

Couldn't I write a piece of prose or poetry.

I had read so much so many varieties,

Wasn't it time to convert it into an article or story.


My reading sessions came down drastically,

giving way to creative and content writing.

It was totally a challenging experience,

Drafting, reviewing, editing and composing.


Finally, I started publishing my work,

Getting feedback, learning and gradually improving.

My past reading phases helped me a lot,

I began to believe that reading was a precursor to writing.

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© 2021 Umesh Chandra Bhatt

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