Question: Does heavy amounts of reading lead to better writing?
Answer: “Examined effects of reading habits on journalistic writing abilities of 100 university students and found no correlation between the amount of reading and quality of writing.” Title of article “Heavy Readers Not Always Better Writers….” R Stutman and D Cassady, 1983, p. 435.
Comment: Here’s a study that disagrees with my personal experience which shows me that a number of good writers never learned to write in school but were never without a book in hand when growing up. Perhaps the specialized nature of the writing (journalism) was the reason. The results fly in the face of recommendations by professional writers in the pages the magazine The Writer, a publication by writers for writers.
Perhaps difference is in how one reads as a writer. I would need to read the complete study to learn why this research disagrees so completely with my personal experience. RayS.
Title: “Annotated Bibliography of Research in the Teaching of English.” RK Durst and JD Marshall. Research in the Teaching of English (December 1984), 417-438.