In the last three years, I’d been reading about 200 books a year. In the years before that, I’d read more than a 100 books each year. I distinctly remember one year where my New Year’s resolution was actually to read less; I set a limit of 50 books that year, I ended up reading 53 (I also cheated by rereading some of the same books).
Suffice to say that I’m a pretty fast reader. Not the fastest, maybe, but I read a LOT.
In fact, the only reason I read “only” about 100 books in the years before the last three is because I didn’t have access to a good library. I had to buy all the books I read. I spent the majority of my money on books, and I tried setting budgets, but as soon as I see another interesting book, it’s bye-bye hard-earned cash, hello new friends and adventures in the pages of a book. 🙂
However, that’s not really what I want to talk about right now. I don’t really have to spend money on books anymore since I get all my books from the library. Sure, I pay for a library card and membership, but that’s peanuts compared to all the money I used to spend buying books. And the library is amazing! I have all the books I want and more!
In fact, now I have too many books to choose from and not enough time to read them all!
So yes, the last few years I’ve been reading about 200 books a year, but to my chagrin, I can’t remember much of them. Some stood out, sure, some were really amazing, but there were more than a few times I found myself reading the same books again, NOT on purpose, without even realizing I had read them before until I got halfway through them.
I started keeping track of them on Goodreads, so at least I’d know if I had read the book before, but often I read so fast that by the time I get online to log the books in, I’d already finish 5 books and forgotten what I had thought about the first 3.
I realized that reading so much isn’t necessarily a good thing. Putting aside the fact that I wasn’t getting any work done with all the reading I was doing, I was also not enjoying the books I read as much as I did before. I don’t savor them, I don’t remember much about them, I was just going through the motions of reading one book after another.
Hence, today’s topic: Slow Reading.
I want to read less. I want to read slow. I want to enjoy the books I read and savor them and remember them.
I started reading slower this last month, and I’m really enjoying the books I’ve read. There are a few I’d like to share, but I’ll do them in another post. There is a part of me that still feels like I need to read more books to break some kind of record no one cares about, but I’m ignoring that part of me and giving in to the louder voice that demands to savor the books. I’m pretty sure I won’t regret listening to her, I’m already enjoying books more.
Here’s to slow reading! 🙂