7 Ways to Revive Your Love of Reading
Aug 14, 2009
Posted by: Kelly | Filed under: Reading
Around the time my teachers started assigning books to read on a regular basis, I stopped reading for fun outside of schoolwork. This continued through college, and it took a long while even after college before I sought out reading again.
Whether you’re just out of school, in school but struggling to maintain an extracurricular reading life, or reeling from some bad reads, everyone hits a rough patch from time to time. Here are some ways you can bring back that lovin’ feelin’.
- Mix it up. Been reading a lot of fiction lately? Switch to nonfiction for at least one book. Never tried a graphic novel? Now’s as good a time as any. Burned out on books in general? Try a magazine. Absence, heart, fonder, you know the drill.
- Pick with abandon. You know, you really should read Moby Dick before you die. And War and Peace. And The Brothers Karamazov and …ARGH! Enough. To restore the fun, take the “should” out of your reading—at least once in a while—and pick a book for no other reason than it has a pretty cover or you like the sound of the author’s name. If you’re feeling super reckless, close your eyes and pick a random book on the shelf.
- Go back to your reading roots. Before you ever read a book and well before reading was an assignment, someone read to you. Out loud. Hark back to that happy time in your reading life by putting on your jammies, crawling into bed, and listening to an audio book. Or have your partner or a friend read out loud to you.
- Get out of the house. Find a local bookstore and check out their schedule of author visits. Pick one that sounds interesting, then put it in your calendar. Even if I decide not to read an author’s book after hearing them speak, the author’s passion for their creation makes me want to go home and read a good book.
- Whatever you do, don’t read. Think of a book you’ve been wanting to read for a while, then get a copy of it and put it in a prominent place in your home—on the coffee table, on top of the TV, in your baby’s crib. But this is important: Don’t read it! You’re not allowed to read that book, or anything else, for at least one full day. If you’re like me and still have remnants of a rebellious teenager deep down, you won’t be able to resist what’s forbidden.
- Reread a favorite. This works well when a string of bad reads have turned you off reading. I’m currently rereading the Harry Potter series, and this last month of solace has recharged my reading batteries. I can’t wait to find my next favorite!
- Know when to say when. Master the art of quitting a book that’s not grabbing you. Forcing yourself to slog through something you’re not into is a surefire way to destroy your love of reading. Your reading time is finite, so spend it on books you enjoy.
Your Turn: When reading’s become a chore, how have you brought back the fun?
Photo by billhd.