Reading is one of the best hobbies in the world. It takes you away from reality and into unknown worlds. How can one simply not enjoy it? I have no idea. However, there comes a time in every bookworm’s life when the good ole reading slump hits.
You know when you want nothing more than to sit down, open up a book and read your little heart out, but you just can’t.
The beginning of this year, I was a reading machine. I read so many books, I was half way through my goodreads reading challenge goal by February. July hit and so did my reading slump. I’ve attempted many books, but have only read a few.
Now, being an avid reader and book lover, I have hundreds of books of my own. Working at a library gives me access to thousands of books as well. However, I’m still in a slump.
Are you currently in a slump and are trying to find a way out? Well, here are 10 tips of my own to help you along.
#1 Determine Your Why
Are you busy? Tired? Stressed? Do you have other things on your mind?
If you’re super busy worrying about other things, it’s going to be hard for your mind to focus on the story you’re trying, oh so hard, to fall in love with. Knowing that you have a big project at work or a huge test in a few days, you’re going to be thinking of those things instead of reading. This will not help your reading slump one bit.
Or could it be the book itself?
The book you’re reading just isn’t cutting it. Pick out another book and try that. If you’re still having trouble, then it’s not the book, you’re just in a slump.
Scroll down for tip #2!
#2 Clear Your Mind, Set the Mood
Set aside some time strictly for reading. Write it down in your planner or put a reminder on your phone. You can get ready for bed a bit earlier and use that extra time to focus on reading. Skip watching your favorite TV show by DVRing it and use that time to read.
You can either set a certain amount of minutes to an hour. Or you can decide on a certain amount of chapters or number of pages.
Reading date set? Time to set the mood!
Ask yourself: Do you like reading in a quiet setting? Do you prefer some music as background noise? Do you like reading in a dim lit room, bright room, or natural light from the window?
Set the mood however you find relaxing. We’re trying to clear your mind from stress. Light some of your favorite scented candles or wax melts. Put on some soft music or leave it quiet. Make yourself some tea, hot chocolate, or coffee.
Put on some PJs or some comfy clothes in general. Grab yourself a blanket and some slippers.
Reading shouldn’t be work. The goal is take you away from reality, so start with your surroundings.
#3 Read a New Genre
We all have our favorite genres. Historical fiction, contemporary, fantasy/paranormal, and fairy tales are some of mine. If you’ve been reading books from one particular genre, it’s time to change it up a bit. By reading tons of books from one genre, you can run into them all having similar aspects.
Sometimes it can seem like we’re reading the same book. It can also make the book seem predictable.
Another tip within this tip is trying a completely new genre. Maybe you need to read something new and fresh. Adventuring into new genres can allow you to experience new journeys and outcomes.
#5 Turn to Your Favorites
Oh, our favorites. We all have our favorite books. Our favorites are our favorites for a reason, right? There’s nothing wrong with rereading a book.
Even if you’ve already read it ten times over.
The point is almost always you can fall back in love with your favorite. No matter how deep of a slump you’re in.
Pull that favorite book off your shelf and read away!
#6 Take It Back to Your Childhood
So, you’ve tried tips 1-5 and still can’t read? Well, try taking it back to your childhood. Go back to books that you read as a kid. Go to a local bookstore or library and look through their Juvenile Fiction sections.
Middle grade book’s target audience is younger kids. Because of this, you don’t have to worry about thinking too much. You can just focus on the story. Let the book take you back to what it was like being a kid.
If you’re an adult and think this is a little too young, try YA books.
#7 Novellas & Short Stories Are Your Friends
Maybe sitting down and reading a huge book seems daunting. Perhaps you just don’t want to start reading a book series right now. Try reading Novellas or short stories. Because these two types of literature don’t require huge word counts, they won’t have many pages.
Since they don’t have a huge word count, they don’t spend a ton of time with unnecessary details. You get to the action quickly. You might even be able to finish in one sitting.
Flash fiction is also a good idea. These stories are usually no more than 1,500 words. I have a few, if you would like to check them out.
#8 WATTPAD or Other Online Writing Sites
Try sites such as wattpad or skrawl. You can read different types of stories from everyday writers. If you have a smartphone, you can take your online reading anywhere you go. Kind of like reading an ebook!
#9 Scream, Pull Your Hair Out, Throw Away Your Books!
Okay, don’t actually do any of the above. Well, you could scream, if you want. Just make sure you’re alone, so not to scare anyone!
Getting down to tip #9 is going to make you feel like doing all of the above. Your frustration will be at a high. You’ll be wondering if you’re ever going to read again.
Then you’ll start questioning if you’ve lost your love of reading altogether. I promise you didn’t! This happens to the best of us.
Take a deep breath. All will be well soon!
Keep reading for tip #10.
#10 Take a Break From Your Relationship
You’ve tried all of these tips and still nothing. You have a stack of books by your side. None of them finished. Perhaps you only got through a chapter or two. It’s okay. Your love of reading will come back. Don’t worry!
Try taking a week or two break from reading. Try a month or a few months. Occupy your time with writing or catching up with those TV shows you missed. Do something different. Go for a walk or a day of shopping. Buy new books, but don’t read them yet.
Sometimes you can do something a little too much. No matter how much you love something, you can burn yourself out. Just like if you spend all your time with the same person, you’re gonna get sick of them.
Step away from the books- I can’t believe I just said that.
You’ll know when the time is right, when you find the book. The book you won’t be able to put down.
Just take that time and soon you’ll be out of your reading slump!