Why it is Essential to Read

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“I owe everything I am and everything I will be to books.” – Gary Paulsen

Reading. Remember that word? It’s the word teachers used to use right before your eyes began to close, the word your parents used to stuff down your throat along with Brussels sprouts and the word many English students dread to hear once summer holidays begin. But I wanted to share my experience of reading.

Photographed by Gabriela Mazowiecka.
Photographed by Gabriela Mazowiecka.

Books started out, to me, as a loveable companion; the imaginary friend my little brain was too distracted to come up with on its own, a world to escape into when reality was just too strenuous. But as TV made its way into my extra-curricular activities (well, as my only one), I abandoned my library in search of what I thought were greener pastures. Well, as I grew older and got over the torture that was my English GCSEs, I realised that reality wasn’t all it was cracked up to be and that nothing ever brought me more joy than escaping into the worlds those pages created.

The books I’ve read have changed me. And as much as I would like to dismiss reading as a silly little pastime I long outgrew, I can’t help but admit just how much those stories have added to my life. Therefore, I have decided to give you a few reasons why I think it is essential to read:

1. It will expand your vocabulary

No matter what course or job you’re doing, writing is a crucial part of all of our lives. We write personal statements, job applications, assignments etc. Whatever it may be, you need to have some form of literary prowess to dupe impress some professional into giving you a chance to succeed.

2. They sharpen your mind

Books are acrobatics for the mind. Yes, you heard me. They develop your imagination and give you new ways of thinking. They allow you to enter into somebody else’s shoes, take your mind on journeys it’s never been before and give you a widened view of the world around you. Why spend all that money on a backpacking trip round Europe when you can just open the pages of a novel?

3. Libraries cost less than Blockbusters

Much less. In fact, they are free. I’ve always wondered why libraries give out free books and unlimited renewals while Blockbusters charged a fortune for a smaller range of stories of varying production qualities. Nonetheless, books give you so much more than movies ever will. So put down that LoveFilm membership and pick up a library pass. And I put it to you, young student, that:

‘If you’re not fond of reading, maybe you just haven’t found the right book.’

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Discussion4 Comments

  1. avatar

    Wow, some profound information you have written here..I love gems like ‘No matter what job you’re doing, reading is a crucial part of all our lives’

    Basically your article can be summed up by: Reading is important. I did not know this was a controversial topic..

    Thanks Konyin
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    I am delighted that you love reading too and am overjoyed that you wished to share it with other students through Wessex Scene.

    I feel sorry for the person who can try to make another writer look stupid for sharing their passion and appeals to profundity in the same sentence to make their point,

    Fouad
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    It is important for a writer to get feedback about what they have written so they can improve (even if this means not sugar coating my opinion).

    Do you not think my opinion is a valid one?

    Thanks Konyin
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    There is a sharp difference between giving a writer useful feedback and criticising them in order to make yourself look better. Your tone is clearly mocking. Don’t try and pretend you’re being helpful. At least be honest about your intentions.

    Your opinion seems to be that the article is futile, because you have some weird idea that student media is ‘about’ controversial topics, or ‘about’ what you personally want to read by the looks of things, so no, I don’t think that’s valid.

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