How to read more books

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I’ve read 39 (soon to be 40) books this year. Which for me, is pretty brilliant. I’ve always been one of those people who absolutely adores reading, but there have been times when I’ve only managed to read 10-12 books in a year (when I know that I have the time and capability to fit more in)

I’ve made excuses to avoid committing to reading a lot more. I used my uni degree as an excuse to focus more on reading books for my course. I used my first year of work as an excuse because I was tired and didn’t want to concentrate too much on being there the whole day.

I’ve always read a lot and been a bookworm as a child, but sometimes in life- I think people go through phases of enjoying it more than others. Now that the year is coming to a close, I can officially say that I’m out of my 1-2 year reading slump and am back devouring them like nothing else.

Here are my tips if you’d like to get more into reading over the next year- or if you find it difficult to commit to them:

Don’t read stuff that bores you

I rave about classics non-stop nowadays. But when I was 16- let’s face it- they were difficult and tiring. I would try to read books that were critically acclaimed, only to find that I wasn’t fully enjoying the experience or was just powering on through, trying to understand what was going on.

I started becoming a bookish nutter again after picking up a crappy chic-lit. It wasn’t critically acclaimed, it wasn’t something to be smug and intellectual about- but I enjoyed it. It sparked something that I had really missed- and I never looked back. Nowadays, I can fully appreciate Charlotte Bronte, Jane Austen and Dickens for how incredible their work really is!

Find a community

I found the booktube community around 5-6 years ago, and it’s totally changed my entire reading experience. It’s so nice to actually be able to discuss, chat and relate to other people’s favourites, plus find reviews and suggestions for the kind of things that other people are enjoying. I’ve been a bit slapdash with my Goodreads, but I want to make more time and effort to actually review things that I’ve enjoyed. Plus- I’m a massive geek, so I love digging into the themes, character development, and plot with likeminded people.

Find a book that changes your perspective

If you’ve got a passion in your life, then find a book that can suit your tastes. I’m a feminist, who studied sociology and adores dystopian literature. This meant that ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ was the perfect fit for me, to really recapture my lost love. If you need a recommendation then ask around your friendship group- some of my favourites came from other people!

Try Audiobooks

Still a little torn as to whether this actively can count as ‘reading’- but if you put that to the side for one moment, audiobooks are a great way to listen to amazing books on the move. I always have one on the go as I do a lot of commuting to work- and it really helps to make them more manageable and digestible. Plus if you get car sick like me- you can keep listening even when you’re traveling.

Read on your lunch-break

I only get 30 minutes for lunch- but even if you get 5 or 6 pages done… that’s still you reading 5 or 6 pages!

Don’t compare yourself

Being in the bookish community for a long while now, I’ve realized that you really can’t get competitive about how much you’re reading compared to someone else. I read Stephen King’s ‘IT’ this year. That’s 1,200 pages roughly- so the equivalent of reading about 4 smaller books!

It can be irritating to feel like you’ve not read anywhere near as much as some people, but every day is a fresh starting point. Pick up a short novella and who knows? This time next year you could have read 5 full-books!

Have you got any reading tips I’ve missed?

Rach

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3 Comments

  1. December 20, 2017 / 10:51 pm

    I do the whole Audiobook thing since my commutes to and from work are lengthy. Makes my drive a lot more tolerable and enjoyable. Plus having a child really limits my time to actually sit and read so audiobooks have been a real life saver. I still read whenever I can though because I do want to go back to being a little bookworm. And yes I agree with not competing with other people. I said I would try to read four books this year because I know what situation I am in to read and hey with the effort I put into this year, I managed to read 7! Good enough accomplishment for me in the reading world!

    Great post!

    • December 21, 2017 / 8:36 am

      Yeah I agree- busy lifestyle defo requires an audiobook! I don’t think I’d manage to read anything if I had a baby to be honest, so congrats!! X

  2. December 21, 2017 / 9:08 am

    Great advice. I’d add that if you cannot finish a book, don’t struggle. It’s easier that way. Also, I tend to read more than one book at a time. This helps me a lot when I get bored with one book.

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