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11 tips and tricks to make yourself read more

11 March 2016

From Mashable:

I was having a conversation with a friend recently about our reading habits. Mine are borderline obsessive, and I whip through a 500-page book a week on average. My friend had set a New Year’s Resolution to spend more time reading, and had set a goal of 50 pages a day. But she was averaging half of that, and was disappointed in her progress so far.

She asked how I read so much. “Because I’m single, I live alone and I like to read more than I like to do most other things,” I replied. “Like leave my apartment.”

. . . .

2. Track your reading progress

If you’re training for a marathon, you usually keep track of how many miles you’re accumulating, and how much time you’re spending pounding the pavement. If you want to read more, the same type of documentation can help.

I use Goodreads to keep track of — and yes, kind of brag about — my reading adventures. Its website and app let you update your progress as you make your way through a book, and log the books you’ve finished.

You can share your progress to Facebook. Making it an ongoing and visible quest to all your friends might help ramp up your reading habits, just the same way people posting their mileage progress helps keep them motivated for marathon day.

You can also use Goodreads to document the books you want to read in the future, so that when you finish one book you’ll have a quick and easy way to refresh yourself on what you want to read next.

. . . .

4. Only read what you’re into. Put a book down forever if you have to

Life is too short. If it doesn’t feel worth it to you and you’re not having fun with it, there’s absolutely no shame in not finishing a book. Do you finish watching a TV series if the first two episodes completely suck? (If you do, you’re some kind of masochistic completist.) So why should a book be any different?

Also, don’t shy away from books that appeal to you because other people would call them guilty pleasures. With reading, there’s really no such thing as a “guilty pleasure.” It’s the 21st century; no book is illegal. Don’t let people harsh your buzz about something you like.

When you’re not reading for a curriculum, reading itself shouldn’t feel like a burden.

. . . .

 8. Get in tight with a book nerd

People who love books really love hooking up other people with reading recommendations. They live for it, in fact, and are often quick to loan out their own fast-thumbed copies. When a book delights you or makes you feel something significant, you generally want to spread that to others.

When you’re hanging out with one of these voracious readers, they’ll make you want to read more just by simple proximity. They’ll be tearing through book after book, encouraging you to keep up with them, eager that you finish the last book they gave you because they want to talk about it without spoiling anything. It’d kind of like having a personal trainer — but for making you break a mental sweat.

Link to the rest at Mashable

Books in General

10 Comments to “11 tips and tricks to make yourself read more”

  1. At some point I cancelled the local paper. Like many an author, I fell into the trap of reading industry blogs and writing blogs and people that want to bash indie/traditional publishing. What I do now, is to look for long-form journalism, stories of substance, re-posting them for the benefit of other people. (If the world is dumbing down, you can be a part of the problem or you can be a part of the solution.) I get up and do that every morning, right after checking emails and notifications. I would say reading is my number one activity in terms of hours spent.

    • Hi Louis, this will seem an odd suggestion but check out the feed from DIGG. While most of their “feeds” are videos that are going viral, etc., their THURSDAY feed has a round-up of long-form journalism. This past week had a decent article about an Australian soldier with PTSD that came to America and eventually committed suicide on a mountain, really interesting back story with no real “outcome” to explain stuff. Often they have a good article from Atlantic, or New Republic, or NYTimes that is more in-depth than most.

      PolyWogg

  2. This is why I love my Kindle and KU and downloadable samples. I read PW and other review sites and get book reccos from friends and then load up on samples and KU titles. As I read sample, I delete the ones I didn’t like enough to read on and wish list the ones I want to read so that I can find it through KU or the library, or buy outright if it’s under $5.

    And I also use Goodreads to track everything I sample. Handy tool.

    • “… through KU or the library, or buy outright if it’s under $5.”

      Meany! You’re making the babies — I mean qig5 — cry! 😉

  3. Articles like this baffle me, because my problem has always been trying to make myself read less so I accomplish more in trivial and incidental areas of life such as work and putting meals on the table. Suggestions like tracking your progress and keeping lists of what you read sound way too much like doing book reports, which I loathed as a kid. It seems to me that the best way to read more is to have fun doing it instead of making it a “should”.

    • I usually have goals each year like “make time for reading”, “make time for writing”. But the solutions on this one were obviously for “non-readers” who want to “read at least something”, not for people like me. I laughed all my way through it, and had to turn it into a blog about my experience even. http://www.polywogg.ca

    • Articles like this baffle me, because my problem has always been trying to make myself read less so I accomplish more in trivial and incidental areas of life such as work and putting meals on the table.

      ^This. Totally. Reading is my pleasure.

  4. 12. Less TV

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