So, here's a short explanation as to why writers should read.
I've been working on this novel for well over a year, and some times I just fly through. It sounds awesome, it works well.
I get so focused on wanting to work on my own novel I either forget, or even refuse to read something else, because I don't want it to distract me.
Well, I've been really irritated at this, and the last chapter, because they just don't seem right somehow. I got annoyed and picked up a book and started reading, trying to give my brain a break. Suddenly I realize... Dammit, I forgot the background!
I'm trying to rely on dialogue and actions, and doing nothing to set up the "background noise". No wonder it sounds so stiff and blah.
Backgrounds have always been my Achilles Heel : / Gotta work on that.