Making Time For Reading

I have a confession to make: I’m a slow reader. :(

But in contrast, I’m a fast writer. :)

relax-on-the-sofa-776289-mInformation and news and technical stuff, I can read fast, but fiction… for some reason I take a lot longer. Maybe I just want to savour what’s happening with the characters and take my time to really feel the setting, or maybe it’s that when I read fiction my mind starts getting ideas for my own books (*note to aspiring writers – once you start writing, you will NEVER read books the same way again!).

There are SO MANY GREAT BOOKS out there right now that I want to read, and I get frustrated when I can’t get through them all. However, five months into 2014 and I have been reading more than usual and making more time for reading. It’s not just about the speed you read when you’re actually reading, but taking opportunities throughout the day to get a few pages in to increase your total reading time and get through more of those wonderful stories.

Here are some of the tips I’ve found helpful to make more time to read (some of these work best when reading ebooks, as digital books can beĀ on your smartphone ready to whip out when needed):

  1. Waiting in a supermarket or post office queue
  2. Waiting for an appointment in a waiting room
  3. Waiting for large documents to download or screens to load on the computer
  4. While on hold with phone companies, etc
  5. Waiting in the car to pick up spouse or children from classes or trains, etc
  6. While eating breakfast, lunch, or on a coffee break
  7. First 5 minutes or so after waking in the morning
  8. At night before bed (the obvious one, this is when most people read)
  9. During commercial breaks on TV. The average one hour show has 10-15 minutes of ads! Watching TV for two hours you can get half an hour of reading done
  10. While stirring/cooking dinner (watch those sticky fingers and don’t drop your eReader or phone into the pot!)
  11. After exercise: if you go for a walk, why not stop half way or towards the end and read for 5 minutes in the great outdoors. Or if working out at home, take a few minutes to lie down afterwards and read while your body recovers (just remember to get back up!)
  12. Try an audio book to listen to while driving, doing housework, cooking, or exercising
  13. Have an allocated ‘nothing but reading’ day once a month, or whenever you can

I also recently heard about an app that increases how many words you read per minute. It’s called Spritz. I tried it. It works! But would this work for fiction or would it take away from the overall relaxing experience? Hmmm…

 

What about you, do you read as often as you would like?

Have you got any more tips to increase your reading time?

~ Juliet

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Posted on May 26, 2014, in General and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 10 Comments.

  1. So true that you will never read the same way again when you start writing! I am also a slow reader, but I do have chunks of time almost every day when I read. I find I can’t, however, just pick up a book to read a page or two as this frustrates me. I’m the same with movies or TV shows – I HATE pausing it multiple times! I may give some of your suggestions a try as my reading has slowed even more this year! Happy Reading!

  2. I do not read enough, sadly. It’s hard to fit both reading and writing into an already full day. I do use the audiobook suggestion you made, and that is the way I read most of my books. Otherwise it’s twenty minutes or so in bed at night with my eyes burning from need for sleep.

  3. Don’t worry, Juliet. I’m a slow reader too! I could read faster, but I love to savour what’s going on and really get to know the characters. Reading faster would definitely lessen the joy of reading for me. I also agree that you never read a book the same way again when you’re a writer. I mostly read at night before bed, on my lunch break at work, or devote a big chunk of time to reading during days off if I can manage it.

  4. Slow reader here too. I do try and read in some of the situations you suggested. Definitely I could make more use of my phone for reading in snippets here and there. I go to school 30 minutes early to collect my daughter that way I not only get a close carpark but I get half an hours uninterupted reading in.

    • That’s a great idea to arrive early for parking AND reading. I used to bring a book to my son’s martial arts class but I would often end up chatting to one of the other parents instead!

  5. kerriepaterson

    I’m a fast reader – I somehow taught myself to speed-read in school. Kids used to sit on the school bus and time how long it took me to read a page! (all in the name of let’s pick on the geek!)

    I have several books on the go at once, scattered around the house, so I read at every opportunity. I’m trying to take time to daydream more in favour of reading. But it’s hard because I do love to read!

    • Those mean kids! ;) (out of curiosity, how long does it take you to read a page?)

      I’m the opposite, I often daydream more than I read, and sometimes I have to remind myself not to get to carried away!

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