Creative10 Feb 2024Andrea Boyle

The Joy of Reading: A Boost for Your Creativity

Hey, creative minds! Let's talk about something special, reading books and how it can ignite our creativity. So, grab a cuppa, and let's chat about the simple joys of getting lost in a good book and its unexpected benefits.

In a world dominated by fast-paced digital communication and instant gratification, the art of reading often takes a backseat. As Groucho Marx humorously put it, "I find television very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go into the other room and read a book."

For those of us seeking to enhance our creativity, diving into the world of books can be a transformative journey. Beyond mere entertainment, reading nurtures the imagination, refines your language skills and cultivates a deeper understanding of the human experience which can be a powerful spark for unlocking your creativity.

Consider Angus Fletcher, a story scientist, who merged neuroscience with literature to decipher the impact of stories on our brains. His insights have even been applied to the U.S. Army, unlocking creativity and innovation for defence force personnel. Fletcher emphasises that the source of human intelligence lies in our storytelling ability, something computers and AI cannot replicate.

Now, let's explore how books uniquely inspire and spark creativity:

Let your imagination stretch: You know how your mind goes on an adventure when you read a good book? That's your imagination getting a workout! Books paint pictures with words, and suddenly, you're in a whole new world. It's like a creative boost for your brain to dream big and think beyond the ordinary.

Words, glorious words: Have you ever read a sentence so beautifully crafted that it felt like a warm hug? That's the magic of literature, it's not just about the story; it's about how the words flow together. As you absorb those expressive sentences, your language skills get an upgrade.

People watching, but better: Books provide a sneak peek into the messy, funny, and complicated lives of characters, offering a better understanding of humanity and an emotional toolkit for more authentic and relatable creative projects.

Dives into big questions: Stories challenge your thinking, nudging you to ponder deeper and see the world from different angles.

Little sparks of inspiration: Books are like a treasure trove of light-bulb moments. Whether it's a surprising twist, a quirky character, or a thought-provoking theme, there's always something waiting to spark your creative flame.

Reflecting on one of my own experiences, many years ago, I discovered a hidden gem in a "shared book drop" during a family cruise that introduced me to one of my favourite authors.

Tana French's "The Likeness" immediately captured my attention. This beautifully crafted psychological thriller stretched my imagination, immersed me in detailed scenes and characters, and presented endless twists and turns that fuelled my creative mind. Each page turn became a quest to solve the mystery before reaching the final page.

In a nutshell, reading can be a transformative practice that nurtures creativity, refines language skills and deepens our understanding of the human experience. So, the next time you open a book, remember that you are not just reading words on a page; you are embarking on a journey into a world of endless possibilities that can unlock the unlimited potential of your own creativity.

Article by Andrea Boyle

Andrea Boyle is the Senior Creative Designer at Belong Creative. She seeks to solve problems with visual solutions that captivate and inspire people with beautiful design. When not working she enjoys getting outdoors, reading a good book and spending time with her family.