Gini Dietrich

Reading Fiction Helps Your Career

By: Gini Dietrich | January 17, 2012 | 
228

I’m an English major. Not as in the language, but as in literature and creative writing.

I preface with that because what I’m about to say may come across as biased.

Read. More. Fiction.

As it turns out, though, I’m not biased (well, maybe a little bit). In the November issue of Scientific American, author and researcher Keith Oatley describes what reading fiction does for our minds and souls.

  1. Reading stories can fine-tune your social skills by helping you better understand other human beings.
  2. Entering imagined worlds builds empathy and improves your ability to take another person’s point of view.
  3. A love affair with narrative may gradually alter your personality—in some cases, making you more open to new experiences and more socially aware.

You can’t read the entire article unless you subscribe, but that’s the gist of what it says.

I run a PR firm so, of course, it makes sense for us to require our team read everything from news and blogs to fiction and poetry. And it’s one of the questions we ask during interviews.

Hearing what kinds of books people read (is it Steven King or Ayn Rand?) tells us a lot about what kind of person they are and, better, what kind of writing they’ll be able to do for us.

But you don’t have to be in a creative field for reading fiction to make business sense.

During the past decade or so, Oatley and other academic researchers have shown how reading fiction helps a person better understand real human emotion, which improves social skills.

In one of Oatley’s studies, 94 respondents were asked to guess the emotion of a person by looking at a photograph of their eyes. They discovered,

The more fiction people [had] read, the better they were at perceiving emotion in the eyes, and…correctly interpreting social cues.

As well, they tested 252 people on the theory that the big five personality traits – extroversion, emotional stability, openness to experience, agreeableness, and conscientiousness – could be affected by reading novels. Once again they discovered,

A significant relation between the amount of fiction people read and their empathic and theory-of-mind abilities.

But it’s not just about social skills with your team. It also affects the bottom line. The Business Case for Emotional Intelligence shows how teaching employees to focus on their work and not simply just getting the job done cuts down on grievances, mistakes, and even safety issues.

Emotional intelligence is forged in many ways, including fiction reading. Just like anything else, we have to work our minds…for leadership skills, for managing profits, and for working better with our human capital.

Next time you go to pick up a business publication or haggle through your email, at the end of a long day, think about reading some fiction instead. Not only will it give you some time away from work, it will help you at work.

This first appeared in my weekly Crain’s column.

About Gini Dietrich


Gini Dietrich is the founder and CEO of Arment Dietrich, an integrated marketing communications firm. She is the author of Spin Sucks, co-author of Marketing in the Round, and co-host of Inside PR. She also is the lead blogger at Spin Sucks and is the founder of Spin Sucks Pro.

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228 Comments on "Reading Fiction Helps Your Career"

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KenMueller
4 years 3 months ago
Now I’m glad I’ve been addicted to fiction since I was a kid and that my parents cultivated reading in our home. I’d even go beyond this and say this stresses the importance of living a well-rounded life with varied interests. I’ve met quite a few people who go out of their way to tell me that they only read business books, as if it’s a badge of honor. Perhaps this is the new version of the nose in the air pronouncement “I only watch PBS and listen to NPR”. It’s so important to have wide and varied interests. I… Read more »
ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@KenMueller We didn’t have a TV growing up so we could either read or play outside. I’m really happy reading was cultivated in my house. I totally agree with you. Reading LOTS of different things make you much more well-rounded.

nlyons posted a link on Twitter the other day about how one should only date girls who read. I wanted to yell, “That’s right!”

bhas
bhas
4 years 3 months ago
I have always been a bookworm. But now that I use my writing to pay the bills I have found that reading fiction has improved my language. I went through a phase in college and at work when I didn’t have time to read quality fiction and I could tell that my muscles had atrophied. I don’t know if it’s with me or it’s universal but if I spend too much time on the Internet I start making silly mistakes that I never made back when I read essays, short stories, poems and plays for high school assignments. Maybe, when… Read more »
bhas
bhas
4 years 3 months ago
I have always been a bookworm. But now that I use my writing to pay the bills I have found that reading fiction has improved my language. I went through a phase in college and at work when I didn’t have time to read quality fiction and I could tell that my muscles had atrophied. I don’t know if it’s with me or it’s universal but if I spend too much time on the Internet I start making silly mistakes that I never made back when I read essays, short stories, poems and plays for high school assignments. Maybe, when… Read more »
ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@bhas Y U NO LIKE ME made me laugh. Out loud. Hilarious!!

One of the things I’m religious about here is AP style. It was required I memorize it as a junior professional and now I require it of my team. Those kinds of mistakes, along with the spelling and grammar, make me nuts. You won’t pass our writing test if you only know text language, which concerns me for the young professionals we’ll be hiring in the years to come.

glonigro
4 years 3 months ago
@ginidietrich Really enjoyed this post, and I couldn’t agree more. Sometimes in our busy lives, it feels like a luxury to take the time to become absorbed in a good book, but it’s such a wonderful feeling. Then there’s always that feeling of not wanting to start another book after you’ve read one that really resonates with you because you don’t want it to be over! One of the reasons I really like book clubs is because they encourage me to read books I might not have picked up otherwise. More often than not, I’ve been pleasantly surprised and really… Read more »
ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@glonigro LOL! That’s so true. I was so sad when I finished reading The Hunger Games series. I felt like I’d lost a friend.

Nikki_Little
4 years 3 months ago

I just read this last week, and I’ve been thinking lately how I need to broaden out of ALWAYS reading content related to my career, so this was the push I needed. I downloaded The Illumination the other night (I think it was on NPR’s list of top 2011 books), and so far I love it. I think (hope) reading fiction will help slow my brain down at night before I sleep so I stop thinking about work!

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@Nikki_Little It should help transfer you to a new place. You may even begin to dream about things that help your work, without even realizing it. I do that and it’s pretty interesting to see what I come up with because of my subconscious.

John_Trader1
John_Trader1
4 years 3 months ago
Brilliant post. The gateway to being more empathetic and accepting differing points of view is such an essential dynamic of a modern PR pro and I suspect becoming a bit lost with younger generations that are lured away from reading by the digital age. I visit our local library at least a couple of times a month on a Saturday and often it’s empty and barren – a place that used to be the toast of childhood to explore and expand the creative mind. With the increasing pressure to crank out results, learning to develop a more well rounded outlook… Read more »
ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@John_Trader1 Do you see my mom at the library? You two are the only people I know who go there. OK. That’s a slight exaggeration. I know maybe five people who still go to the library.

It’s funny – I read more now because of the digital age. It’s easier to get your hands on lots of really good stuff to read. The problem I find is that, because I read and write all day long, I don’t want to read at the end of the day. Sometimes I have to force myself.

jenzings
jenzings
4 years 3 months ago
I love this post. LOVE. I read a ton, and always have. We lived overseas a lot when I was a kid, and television was not an option. When we would get whiny and bored, the answer was always the same: “go read a book.” So we did. Now, I am far more likely to pick up a book than turn on the television, and it’s almost always fiction. I read 30 books last year and am aiming for 36 this year. I’ve always felt that strong readers make good writers, for the reasons articulated in @bhas comment. (I hope… Read more »
ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@jenzings Holy cow. I’m impressed you read that many books. Wow. Even though you’re banned, I’m just finishing Steve Jobs. What should I read next?

jenzings
jenzings
4 years 3 months ago

@ginidietrich Hm…my favorites from last year were (in no particular order): 1Q84, The Last Days of Ptolemy Gray, Cutting for Stone, State of Wonder, The Family Fang, Cloud Atlas and The Passage. I’ve just finished Sarah’s Key and The Summer of the Bear, both were good, and I’ve just started The Revisionists, which has a very interesting plot and is good so far.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@jenzings I LOVED Sarah’s Key! The French did a movie of it and it was quite good, too.

makammerer
4 years 3 months ago

Awesome! I’ve SO got this one covered, lol. It’s nice to know I’m doing something productive while pursuing one of my favorite hobbies. I know for certain that reading so much fiction has had a huge impact on my vocabulary, sentence structure and overall writing style. Also, since I’m pursuing a career as a librarian, it’s an easy way to relate to my interviewers. 😉

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@makammerer See! So many benefits!

TimPio
TimPio
4 years 3 months ago

Gini:Some great thoughts backed up by some powerful data. This is something I wrestle with…I love to read, but sometimes choose a nonfiction book thinking that it’s more important or urgent. That being said, there’s nothing more satisfying than getting lost in a book (or books) with a great story. Last summer the Stieg Larsson trilogy did it for me. Hmm..I’m going to have to re-think the books I choose to read. Thanks again!

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@TimPio If you liked the Stieg Larsson books, you should read The Hunger Games series. I had to tell myself to go to work and I could read when I got home. They are that good.

Anthony_Rodriguez
4 years 3 months ago

@ginidietrich@TimPio All this talk of the Hunger Games is making me want to read them again!

polleydan
polleydan
4 years 3 months ago

@TimPio

polleydan
polleydan
4 years 3 months ago

@TimPio Yes, I fall into the “trap” of reading nonfiction over fiction too much because of urgency. I’ve started to expand my book searches on recent library trips, though.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@polleydan@TimPio Fiction is so much more fun to read. Unless you’re reading my nonfiction book (due out in May). Then clearly you’ve chosen the right path.

WordsMatterESW
WordsMatterESW
4 years 3 months ago

Reading fiction is great. Writing a little is even better. :-)

Great post!

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@WordsMatterESW That’s one thing I need to do – write some fiction. I have the writing part down, but I’ve not written any fiction since college.

jenzings
jenzings
4 years 3 months ago
@ginidietrich@WordsMatterESW Agreed! I do this too. What helped to jump-start this was joining a writers’ group at my local library. I receive good, fair, and critical feedback from the group. I submitted one short story to an anthology that was part of a contest, and the piece was accepted for publication. I write and publish pretty much every day on the CustomScoop blog, but having that short story accepted was such a thrill! It’s so much fun to let your mind go down different literary paths. Gini, the most interesting thing to me is that since I’ve been in the… Read more »
WordsMatterESW
WordsMatterESW
4 years 3 months ago

@jenzings@ginidietrich I agree, wholeheartedly, that writing and reading outside of your “typical” genre is a great preventative for being blocked. Even if it is just for personal use and will never be seen by anyone else. I treat my “other genre” writing as creative play time, really. It helps keep things in motion.

WordsMatterESW
WordsMatterESW
4 years 3 months ago
@ginidietrich There are lots of ways to go about it. As Jenzings says below, there are writing groups around, or make friends with a fiction writer who’s willing to give you constructive feedback, or, just do it for your own personal amusement. As a fiction writer, I write non-fiction (including blog posts and such) mostly as a hobby, though I’m always open to deepening the work to a more professional level. I dabble with poetry which no one needs (or would want) to see. I play with screenwriting on occasion for the creative energy. Either way, in studying ongoing creativity,… Read more »
ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@WordsMatterESW I think I am going to take your advice. As soon as my business book is off to the presses, I’m going to start that novel I’ve always wanted to write. I have no idea what it’ll be about, but that’s part of the process. Right??

bradmarley
bradmarley
4 years 3 months ago

I remember reading a tweet a few months back where the tweeter asked for book recs, as he was boarding a plane and needed something to read. Nine out of the 10 responses were business or marketing books. It was almost as if they were afraid to recommend something fictional, for fear they wouldn’t be taken seriously.

I, for one, am glad to hear this, because I tend to read mostly fiction.

(Don’t judge.)

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@bradmarley That makes me sad. I wouldn’t even think to recommend a business book before fiction. So you won’t see me judging you here!

TheJackB
4 years 3 months ago

Reading makes you into a better writer which is why I am a fan of Mad Magazine.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@TheJackB My brothers were not into Mad Magazine so I’m just now getting my lesson from Mr. D on the stories. Of course, the movies they’ve been making in the past 10 years helps my education too.

TheJackB
4 years 3 months ago

@ginidietrich I used to love the back page and how you would fold it to discover a new picture/message.

JayDolan
4 years 3 months ago

I try to read one fiction book a month. I’m going to be really sad when I finish The Hunger Games Trilogy next month.

scribblinghappy
scribblinghappy
4 years 3 months ago

@JayDolan If business books were written like The Hunger Games, I suspect people would actually read more of them after dutifully picking them up from the bookstore. Fantastic trilogy.

JayDolan
4 years 3 months ago

@scribblinghappy Indeed. Maybe I will write that business book.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@JayDolan@scribblinghappy Going through the business book publishing process right now, the author doesn’t have much say in the tone. It would be awesome to see that change.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@JayDolan Seriously. I was so sad when I finished the trilogy. I felt like I’d lost a good friend.

scribblinghappy
scribblinghappy
4 years 3 months ago

Gini – fantastic post! It’s important to keep our humanity instead of trying to become machines who feed on the latest business book.

At least that’s the excuse I tell myself when I pull out The Hunger Games instead of the latest and greatest how to succeed in business book.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@scribblinghappy HAHAHAHAH! I’m totally going to use that excuse. I’ll let you know if it makes me feel less guilty.

elizabethsosnow1
elizabethsosnow1
4 years 3 months ago

You had me at Ayn Rand – but you already knew that…Seriously, I heartily agree with this post. I even wrote about my own addiction to fiction over business books here:

http://blog.blisspr.com/2011/10/11/i-don%E2%80%99t-want-to-read-another-book-about-social-media/#content

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@elizabethsosnow1 The title, alone, is going to have me swooning over your blog post.

HowieSPM
4 years 3 months ago

Oh this is such a bellalindsay post. I love reading fiction as much as non-fiction. Mostly Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Spiritual (Tao Te Ching) or Cult fiction (Naked Lunch etc) but occasionally a classic. Being forced to read Harry Potter right now. Sigh. But have a history of the ottoman empire and a book covering the battles of alexander the great lined up next.

I can’t imagine a world without fiction. The old Bards approve of this post Gini!

HowieSPM
4 years 3 months ago

Oh this is such a belllindsay post. I love reading fiction as much as non-fiction. Mostly Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Spiritual (Tao Te Ching) or Cult fiction (Naked Lunch etc) but occasionally a classic. Being forced to read Harry Potter right now. Sigh. But have a history of the ottoman empire and a book covering the battles of alexander the great lined up next.

I can’t imagine a world without fiction. The old Bards approve of this post Gini!

belllindsay
belllindsay
4 years 3 months ago

@HowieSPM “…..have a history of the ottoman empire and a book covering the battles of alexander the great lined up next.” **SWOON** LOL You should read “A History of the World in 100 Objects” by Neil MacGregor – you would *love* it!! I’m reading it now. I will admit to leaning slightly more ‘non-fiction’ in my reading pleasures (science/history geek!) – but I have some fave fiction writers.

bhas
bhas
4 years 3 months ago

@HowieSPM I like your choice of reading material, dear Sir. I have four volumes of “Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire” in my Kindle app for PC right now. Looking forward to diving into these tomes as soon as I have some time.

I have to mention that I like reading quality non-fiction. History is a favorite subject, especially military history. And my choice of fiction these days lean towards classics and authors like Arthur Conan Doyle and Wodehouse. Of course I won’t turn up my nose at a Hadley Chase or a Grisham either.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@bhas John Grisham is my guilty pleasure. I hate to even put that in writing, but I read everything he writes.

belllindsay
belllindsay
4 years 3 months ago

@ginidietrich@bhas Ooooooooh, guilty pleasures…!? Stephen *koff* King. 😉

HowieSPM
4 years 3 months ago

@belllindsay@ginidietrich@bhas I read every King book through IT. That book drained me and I couldn’t ever read another one! LOL

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@HowieSPM FORCED?! How can you be forced to read Harry Potter?? You’re lucky they’re all out. I had to wait YEARS for the next book to come out. I should re-read those, too.

HowieSPM
4 years 3 months ago

@ginidietrich well it was one of the terms of engagement from Isadora. I’ m a LOTR fan, Conan, Xanth, Dune type. LOL

But I love JK Rowling. Glad that punk who divorced her did so before she got published. Sucka! LOL

outtacontext
outtacontext
4 years 3 months ago

@isalara Feeling better today?

isalara
isalara
4 years 3 months ago

@outtacontext not yet :-( Hoping for 2nd dose of antibiotics to do the trick. #endlesscold #fingerscrossed

jasonkonopinski
4 years 3 months ago
Another English major here! Concentration in literary theory and Medieval/Renaissance literature from my undergraduate days, MA in cultural studies. #nerd I’ve always been a voracious reader, both fiction and non-fiction about equally. @HowieSPM and I share love of many of the same genres (shocker, I know). I’ve shared this here before – but I’ll do so again: I re-read LOTR every year. My parents gave me the massive single volume leatherbound edition as a gift on my 15th birthday and it’s been my yearly tradition ever since. Reading has always been the driving force behind my writing.
TheJackB
4 years 3 months ago

@jasonkonopinski@HowieSPM I never get tired of LOTR. I can read and read and read it again. My dream as a writer is to create something like that. Simply indescribable.

jasonkonopinski
4 years 3 months ago

@TheJackB@HowieSPM Seriously. The language and world-building alone are nothing short of spectacular.

bhas
bhas
4 years 3 months ago
@TheJackB@jasonkonopinski@HowieSPM I was hooked on LOTR before the movies came out and it was cool to be a LOTR fan. I still remember the day clearly- it was first year at the engineering college hostel and I saw this big fat book (the entire triology) with a green-black cover lying on a guy’s bed 4 days and new languages,strange worlds, odd races of people, unadulterated evil, desperate battles and punishing treks later I was a fan. For life. Another book that I have read at least a hundred times is “Three Men in a Boat”by Jermone K.Jerome. It’s fricking hilarious… Read more »
ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@jasonkonopinski There simply are some books you should re-read. Always.

Leon
Leon
4 years 3 months ago

G’Day Gini,

I read a lot. But i gotta say that some of the business books i read are sheer fiction. Trouble is, they’re not written by Graham Greene or Earl Stanley Gardner.

I’ve also been writing for over 50 years. I’ve learnt something in that time that all writers of great fiction know. Writing is mostly about that reader, not the writer. If only more bloggers understood that………..! Fortunately, There’s still fun to be had if you search carefully

RegardsLeon

Shonali
4 years 3 months ago

@Leon “… some of the business books i read are sheer fiction. Trouble is, they’re not written by Graham Greene or Earl Stanley Gardner.” Hahahah!

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@Leon LOL!! I just read the first part of your comment aloud to my team. You are hilarious!

DBMC
DBMC
4 years 3 months ago

@ginidietrich Hey Gini, I talk about your reading blog post in my blog today: http://t.co/8APib9L0

Marc_Luber
4 years 3 months ago

As a fellow English major, I’ve gotta agree with this. I hadn’t realized all of the great reasons why reading fiction is so valuable so this was helpful. I usually find myself reading non-fiction like M Gladwell or the Heath brothers but I definitely see the value of fiction. I think you were on to another good reason at the end when you said “it will give you some time away from work”. Reading fiction can be like taking a great brain vacation. Great post.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@Marc_Luber Fellow English majors unite! And it’s fun to see you here so often this year. New Year’s resolution?

Marc_Luber
4 years 3 months ago

@ginidietrich Ha! Yes – it IS actually a NY resolution to get back in the groove.

margieclayman
margieclayman
4 years 3 months ago

I thought for sure this was going to be where you posted your list of 10 favorite books. So let down. So disappointed. I don’t know I’ll be able to recover now. *sigh*

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@margieclayman Crap. I keep forgetting I promised that to you. Can it be a guest post on your blog?

margieclayman
margieclayman
4 years 3 months ago

@ginidietrich Sure. I could contact Nick and see if he could make us a pretty list too :) That way people could judge you. I meant, your choices.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@margieclayman Oh that’s a totally fun idea!

lamiki
4 years 3 months ago

I am having a serious girl crush on you for this post, Ms. @ginidietrich.

Much love,

A fellow English Major who works in marketing

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@lamiki I love you sooooooooo much for saying that!

ewittke
ewittke
4 years 3 months ago

@ginidietrich Made my day seeing this!

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@ewittke That makes me so happy!

LindsayB610
LindsayB610
4 years 3 months ago

This is fascinating. As another English major, and a lifelong reader, I feel like I’m living proof of the truth of this research! Thanks for sharing!

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@LindsayB610 I love that us book nerds have been right all along!

TedWeismann
4 years 3 months ago

IMHO, “The love affair with the narrative” that comes from reading more fiction also tends to manifest itself in the ability of one to converse with authority and conviction (i.e. you don’t hear people that read a lot fall back on “like” and “you know” when they talk.) That’s another business skill that can be improved, and can serve emerging pros well.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@TedWeismann Or even “I think.” Really great point, Ted!

RobinEThornton
RobinEThornton
4 years 3 months ago

Thank goodness. I can ditch my plain paper covers and stop feeling guilty! Great post! @ginidietrich http://t.co/ZNu0MWto

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@RobinEThornton LOL!!

martinwaxman
martinwaxman
4 years 3 months ago

Understanding people through stories RT @ginidietrich Reading fiction enhances your social skills and makes you a better professional

Ameenafalchetto
4 years 3 months ago

Fabulous! YES! Read fiction, go for a walk, run, cycle, listen to music, DRAW … whatever it takes – being away from your work is just as important as doing it.

As cliche as it sounds, getting out and smelling the roses WILL help you gain perspective, inspiration, and help you reflect.

Yay to reading fiction! Do Eric Carle books fall under fiction – “The Hungry Caterpillar” and “Brown Bear” are hardcore favourites along with Aesop’s “Lion and the Mouse” …

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@Ameenafalchetto HAHAHAH! I think they do, indeed, fall under the fiction category. BiP is getting great training!

AlinaKelly
AlinaKelly
4 years 3 months ago
Great posts tell great truths. This. is. a. great. post. period. I have always loved reading fiction and have noticed a direct correlation between the quality of my writing and the amount of non-business reading I do. For a number of years, when I felt a bit overwhelmed with two small children, career etc., I sometimes felt that I only had time for business reading. Fiction fell off the bedside table, so to speak. While many business books are well written, their effect on me is quite different from reading fiction. During those times when I was not reading intricately… Read more »
ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@AlinaKelly “even thought I’m Canadian.” That made me laugh. Out loud!

AlinaKelly
AlinaKelly
4 years 3 months ago

@ginidietrich @AlinaKelly

AlinaKelly
AlinaKelly
4 years 3 months ago

@ginidietrich @AlinaKelly

AlinaKelly
AlinaKelly
4 years 3 months ago

@ginidietrich Well then my work here is done.

jennimacdonald
jennimacdonald
4 years 3 months ago

@SamiaZaky Thanks for the RT, do you enjoy fiction too? : )

SamiaZaky
SamiaZaky
4 years 3 months ago

@jennimacdonald definitely do! it’s what gets me through my 1.5 hr commute to #NYC each morning!

jennimacdonald
jennimacdonald
4 years 3 months ago

@SamiaZaky Ouch, I was thinking bout doing that but I decided I’ll just stick w Stamford

SamiaZaky
SamiaZaky
4 years 3 months ago

@jennimacdonald CT is fun too! Where do you work?

jennimacdonald
jennimacdonald
4 years 3 months ago

@SamiaZaky In transition : ) Let’s keep in touch, I don’t know anyone down there

KDillabough
4 years 3 months ago

I read. All the time. Every type and kind of book that “finds” me.

Erin F.
4 years 3 months ago

@KDillabough I had nine books find me today. I almost spelled “fine” instead of “find.” That would work, too. I had to pay for those nine books. Despite that fact, I love them all.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@Erin F.@KDillabough I need a book to find me. Any recommendations?

KDillabough
4 years 3 months ago

@ginidietrich@Erin F. I will be back with recommendations:)

Erin F.
4 years 3 months ago

@KDillabough@ginidietrich Are we staying in the fiction realm? Ursula K. Le Guin’s Changing Planes found me today. The other books are about the actual act of writing, creativity, et cetera.

KDillabough
4 years 3 months ago

@Erin F.@ginidietrich Oh my, the name Ursula Le Guin puts me in mind of one of my favourite movies, “The Jane Austin Book Club”. SUCH a great movie, & Le Guin’s referenced in a key part.

KDillabough
4 years 3 months ago

@ginidietrich@Erin F. I suggest “The Forgotten Garden” by Kate Morton as a start. It’s an escape!

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@KDillabough@Erin F. Thank you! I don’t have either of these on my list so I’ll add them.

jenzings
jenzings
4 years 3 months ago

@KDillabough@Erin F.@ginidietrich I didn’t know The Jane Austin Book Club had been made into a movie…I read the book!

KDillabough
4 years 3 months ago

@jenzings@Erin F.@ginidietrich The movie is fantastic! It stars Maria Bello, Emily Blunt, Amy Brenneman, Kathy Baker, Lynn Redgrave, Marc Blucas, Hugh Dancy, Maggie Grace, Kevin Zegers and Jimmy Smits. I’ve watched it at least a dozen times. sooooooo good.

Tinu
4 years 3 months ago

I was an English major for a while. And I agree. Each day I find that I need both left brain and right brain stimulation to operate at my peak. Otherwise I tend to suck. And yes, I phrased that especially for our punk friends. 😉

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@Tinu For a while? Can you stop being a major in something? I was a nuclear physics major for a while.

Tinu
4 years 3 months ago

@ginidietrich according to my parents, when they stop paying for it. :)

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@Tinu AHAHAHAHA!

Jill Tooley
4 years 3 months ago
Finally, sound evidence to prove that my love of fiction actually means something in the “real world!” I was/am an English major as well, and I’ve always felt that reading has contributed to my empathetic nature. It has also shaped my writing skills because I’ve been exposed to varied sentence structure and tone. If I didn’t have access to fiction, then who knows if I’d even enjoy writing as much as I do today! (Side note: many of my friends who claim to hate reading are constantly updating their statuses with cringe-worthy phrases like “should of”…I can’t help but think… Read more »
ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@Jill Tooley Should of is one of those things that makes me cringe when I see it. That and irregardless.

We can all thank Scientific American for giving us some ammunition for our major!

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@holly_bowers And your bio even says you’re a bookworm!

holly_bowers
holly_bowers
4 years 3 months ago

@ginidietrich I’m also a senior English major, and your article made my day!

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@holly_bowers See! There is something we can do with our degrees!

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@lpiotto Right?? LOL!

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@feliciahudson I need to finish my work so I can curl up with a good book!

feliciahudson
feliciahudson
4 years 3 months ago

@ginidietrich I love this post! Didn’t have a chance to comment. It gives permission to indulge. :-) Please share what you’re reading!

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@feliciahudson I just finished Steve Jobs. While not fiction, it’s EXCELLENT reading

kmueller62
kmueller62
4 years 3 months ago

@ginidietrich still got snow?

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@kmueller62 Yep! It snowed all day today!

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@kmueller62 Yep! It snowed all day today!

kmueller62
kmueller62
4 years 3 months ago

@ginidietrich really? wow. how much do you have now?

feliciahudson
feliciahudson
4 years 3 months ago

@ginidietrich Thanks for sharing. Steve Jobs has been on my list. Good to know you thought was a good read.

authoraire
authoraire
4 years 3 months ago

@randomhouseau Justification enough to make it tax deductible, don’t you think?

bradpenner2
bradpenner2
4 years 3 months ago

@_AlexisAbel what if u have a fictional career?

_AlexisAbel
_AlexisAbel
4 years 3 months ago

@bradpenner2 In the words of Holden Caulfield, don’t be a phony!

Sallyodgers
Sallyodgers
4 years 3 months ago

@randomhouseau THAT’s why books are tax-deductible for writers… We knew there had to be a good reason.

Sallyodgers
Sallyodgers
4 years 3 months ago

@randomhouseau THAT’s why books are tax-deductible for writers… We knew there had to be a good reason.

Nic_Cartwright
4 years 3 months ago
Sorry for being the ‘odd man out’ – but I have never been a fiction reader. As a young lad, eager to learn, and desperate for knowlegde – I used to eat up atlas’, history books, information about countries, events etc. As I moved into impressionable teenage years – I dropped all that (as well as the music manuscrripts – darned – wish I had kept that going) – and moved onto sports information. Now – as a well adjusted man about town – my reading is confined to snippets of web stories, work documents, and the odd self help… Read more »
ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@Nic_Cartwright The moral of the story for Nic? Read fiction.

Tinu
Tinu
4 years 3 months ago

@OffThe_Record If you’re buying, the price is only $4700.47. Friends and family discount. I take all credit cards. @ginidietrich

saintinc
saintinc
4 years 3 months ago

@SeanClark Thanks for RT :)

JonathanRWegner
JonathanRWegner
4 years 3 months ago

@js_mack @ginidietrich I’m pretty sure reading ‘The very hungry caterpillar’ counts

js_mack
js_mack
4 years 3 months ago

@JonathanRWegner @ginidietrich But that’s not fiction…

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@js_mack LOL!!

jonbuscall
4 years 3 months ago

I SO hear you on this one, Gini. I started out with fiction and even published a novel at the end of the 90s before deciding to move onto a different kind of writing after I really hated the publishing world and the flunkies that hang around there. It just wasn’t for me.

But I think decades of reading fiction helped me more than any writing tutor both stylistically and in terms of having something to say.

My favourite book of all time ? Jane Eyre

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@jonbuscall I also loved Jane Eyre. You really can never go wrong with the classics.

BenjammerJ
BenjammerJ
4 years 3 months ago

Thanks for sharing, Gini! I’m an English major, MFA grad working in corporate comms and I completely agree that the skills I learned from just simply reading make a huge difference. I can tell who doesn’t really read, too.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 3 months ago

@BenjammerJ You can tell, can’t you?! We always ask that question in interviews. It tells a TON about a person.

ansinanser
ansinanser
4 years 3 months ago

(-: Fiction def. over end of day biz email @karvetski. For am biz writing @ginidietrich I don’t want creativity blocking facts #yoikes

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