Book Trailer The Noble Train

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

The Books Most People Don't Read

I was going through my library and had to write down the books that influenced me as a writer. As I went through the books I realized I would never read them now. I simply don't have the time. It is a sad fact that if a writer doesn't read these books early on he or she will probably never read them. How many people would pick up Ulysses or The Sound and The Fury, War and Peace, Crime and Punishment, The Portrait of an Artist as a Young Man, Dubliners, Light in August, or Finnegan's Wake and read it now? Most would not. Sanctuary, Under the Volcano, Dr Sax, On the Road. These are just a few of the books but the point is that if I had not read them when I was trying to learn how to write fiction, I probably wouldn't.

Work will knock out reading time. Kids, family, the Internet. I am amazed that I took the time to read a lot of these musty novels but it made me realize that if I had a different life where I would have had kids or a real job or taken a different road then I would have never read these books. But reading is the backbone of a writer and those books skipped are skipped for good. There is really a very short window to explore the old writers and that is really true today

Who knows how many writers are lost because they simply didn't have the time or read and develop their craft. It takes years of reading and experimenting before a style develops. Most people simply don't have the time and now of course I can barely keep up with reading current fiction. And I think about the books I didn't read and never will now. I can only take solace that at least, for a while, I took a stab at the the books most people don't read.

NPR Interview in Hemingways Attic

Books by William Hazelgrove