I'm a writer, but also an avid reader. Seriously, I have about 500 books sitting on my shelves (yes, some of them have been read) and I love devouring new and interesting stories. It amazes me when I meet someone who says that they want to be a writer, but they don't like reading. I just can't imagine being a writer and not loving to read.
I believe reading helps, not only to show you what's out there and is currently being published, but it also helps with the skills of writing and broadens the language skills of the writer. Yes, reading can even give inspiration and help writer's block. At the moment I'm writing a YA horror and was having a bit of problem bringing the eeriness and scares into the scenes where I know what's coming. Okay, I'm obsessed with horror movies and have read some horror novels (loved R.L. Stine when I was younger), but I didn't know how to make something scary when I knew every single event and surprise that was happening. That's when I had a spur-of-the-moment impulse to read some horror books that I've heard are really creepy (none other than the Ring books by Koji Suzuki) and just the first chapter has really helped give me some ideas as to creating an eerie atmosphere so that my scenes will be super scary (which is exactly what I want).
So, I believe reading is a necessary part of the writing process. What do you think?