Police Dramas. Medical Thrillers. M/M Romance. Froggy books (you remember 'Heeeey Frooooggggyyyyy!'). Wagons West. James Patterson. John Irving (A Prayer For Owen Meany). Robin Cook, Michael Palmer.
Do I write any of this stuff? No. I couldn't produce a mystery if my life depended on it; I'm too eager for the bad guys to be caught. But I do like to READ about how the bad guys are caught:) Can I figure it out? Sometimes. Other times, I discover I've been waaaay off base.
Reading outside the genre I choose to write...gives me a break from the boy-meets-girl/boy-loses-girl/they-make-up-and-live-happily-ever-after. Sometimes there's a subplot in my mainstream fiction which will give me an idea for my writing, but mainly I'll read nearly everything I can get my hands on which sounds like a good story, or if I like the author.
Some authors I've met by accident, such as the Wagon's West series. I'd privately made fun of the titles when they first appeared, but while on a family vacation, I ran out of reading material. And out of desperation, I picked up the latest title and bought it for the ride home.
I was instantly hooked into the storyline, and was determined to read the entire series.
Dad got me started on Irving and Michenor. He took me to see Hotel New Hampshire, and one day I found Prayer for Owen Meany at the library. I took it home, read it, and bought my dad a copy for Christmas. He let me 'borrow' Hawaii and Centennial after the mini-series ended during my high school years.
I decided to read Twilight after my sister told me it was something I could have written. I read Harry Potter after seeing the first movie. And having devoured The Percy Jackson (Lightening Thief) series, both teens and I are looking forward to the movies.
I've won books in contests and become instant fans of the authors, with few exceptions.
So yes, I read outside my genre. It makes me a well-rounded reader.
Just don't expect any vampires driving covered wagons to Oregan and finding themselves inside a mystery in any of my books. I'll leave that storyline to the 'experts'.