It happens to the best of us… a book rut. There are so many books on my desk that I have a hard time choosing one, and when I do it really has to be incredible for me to keep with it and not get bored. When you’ve got dozens of books waiting to be read the pressure is on for the book you pick to live up to the hype.
It’s my own fault; I bring this upon myself. I really do. It’s just that I’m such a fast reader that I fly through books like breathing, and when I get sidetracked I find it hard to go back. Generally, book ruts happen when I’m super busy or just finished a book series that I can’t get out of my mind. I always feel like reading, but sometimes I don’t feel like reading the books I’ve got and my bank account is blockading my entrance to bookstores. I find that a good hiatus can inspire you to get back to the books and skip the ones that you’ve started 10 times but never make it past the third chapter (I’m looking at you, Anna Karenina.)
Chapter One: Back Away from the Books
Spend your time outside away from the piles of books begging to be read. For me it’s the hardest part because I want to be where the books are, but my bedroom is full of distractions and actually hinders me getting into a book.
Chapter Two: Different Mediums
When you find yourself overwhelmed with the books and books threatening to topple you over do something else. Stories come in all kinds of forms, and some of the best ones are movies and TV shows. I’m a total book nerd, but when I don’t want to read a book throwing myself into a story that I already know I love can be a good refresher on why you like to read.
Chapter Three: Start Small
When you feel like you might be ready to get back to reading, pick up a book you’ve already read. It’s a classic and a favorite and it won’t consume you like the first book in a new series. If you are feeling particularly brave, you can follow up your rereading with some articles or short stories to get you back in book mode.
Chapter Four: Reorganize
This might be unfamiliar to some of you, but I buy a lot of books that I change my mind about reading. Sometimes it is simply that so much time has passed since I was so excited about that book that I lose interest. Often it’s that someone gave me a book they thought I would like, but I don’t care for. Before you get back to your pile,its a good idea to pare down your pile and your bookshelf. Keep in mind that you might want to come back and read some of them later, but donate the books you read, but hated. Give books away to people who would love to have them. Sometimes I feel like I’m competing with myself to see who can read the most books, but that often leads to me reading what I think I’m “supposed” to and not what I want to.
Chapter Five: Get Cracking
Dive back into your pile with abandon. Read book after book and remember that not every book is a winner, but so many of them are worth your time. And the ones that aren’t really your cup of tea just show that you know what you like, and you’re happy that way.
See, it’s really very simple. Take a step back and then you’ll long for the books you couldn’t start before.
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