I have completed my 2011 Goodreads Reading Challenge.
This you already know, because I shared about it here. What you don’t know and what some of you have asked me is HOW I did that.
Fifty books a year is a modest accomplishment. I’ve come across people who are seriously impressive readers, and manage to devour an extraordinary 250+ books/year.
So, although I do understand that it is only a small feat, I am very grateful to all of you who’ve celebrated this important achievement with me. I’d hug you all, if I could.
These fifty books/year leave people surprised. Some think that I read 24/7 in order to be able to do this. Others think that it would never be possible in their case, that you need some sort of supernatural abilities. None of these are true. Reading, like most anything, can be learned.
Back to the HOW. How did I read 50 books this past year?
I always have a book with me.
Sometimes, even more than one. Heavy as they are, they always find a place in my handbag (for this purpose, I buy huge handbags only). With a book, I carry the hope to have a moment in between things, so I can read some.
These moments are not as rare as you might think. A friend is late, the bus is not coming as fast as it should, you are stuck in a traffic jam and so on. Our busy everyday lives abound in opportunities to read. At the end of a day, these reading spells can add up to a chapter or two.
Now that I have a Kindle, I actually carry 50+ books with me at all times. Not that I ever have big enough a break to read them all.
I read books that I enjoy.
Because I’ve grown to know the type of books I like, I read what I enjoy most. This is especially true for novels. There are so many different authors and novels out there, that I have no choice but filter them.
I know I like easy reads on relationships, but not the soapy, cheesy type – so I already have a few favourite authors. My husband likes biographies and post-apocalyptic novels, so he reads those. I do venture into unknown ground every now and then – like my few SF reads this year – but eventually I go back to my old favourites.
It’s important you read books you enjoy, because the more you do so, the more you’ll acquire a taste for reading. I suspect some of us have grown to dislike books because they were forced to read stuff they didn’t like at an earlier age. So if you start reading for pleasure, you’ll get into it and the amount of books you read will also increase.
I don’t own a TV.
There’s a quote I absolutely agree with:
I find television very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go into the other room and read a book. [Groucho Marx]
Not that I don’t watch TV – I can always find favourites online. But because we don’t own a TV, we never waste our time watching it. Before you think too highly of us (or judge us), I’ll tell you there’s other distractions that we have, especially as we’re both geeky social-media addicts.
Shouldn’t forget to mention the busy reader’s best friends. I only resort to audiobooks in extreme cases, but my husband is a huge fan – and consumer. He promised a guest-post on audiobooks – should be interesting!
Frankly, the answers to this HOW question are un-glamorously simple.
Reading is how I stop my hectic life and enjoy a moment of rest. That might be why I like it so much and why I read as much as I do.
Why do YOU read? And HOW do you make time for reading?