How to Get More Reading Done

Thursday, January 5, 2017

So I actually surpassed my reading goal of 30 in 2016! For 2017 I've set a goal of 48 (4 per month). I think it's doable, but it will stretch me a little bit and force me to be more consistent. I read all the time when I was younger but quit reading for pleasure sometime in pharmacy school. I had enough to read during school! It's taken me years to get back into a reading routine and I'm so glad I finally got back into it.

I thought it might be helpful if I shared how I've made reading a part of my life and where I get all these books!

How to get more reading done:

1. read on your lunch break *this one is huge for me - and it stops the endless Facebook/Instagram scroll that I would normally do*
2. read before bed *I don't always do this, but I'm always glad when I do*
3. read while drinking coffee/tea in the morning
4. read when you're in the carpool line/Starbucks line/whatever line
5. keep a list of books you want to read so you aren't scrambling to find your next book *I use Goodreads for this*
6. give yourself permission to quit reading a book if you don't like it
7. keep your Kindle/current paperback in your purse so you always have it with you
8. be part of a reading community (Goodreads, a Facebook group, neighborhood Book Club)
9. audiobooks on your commute or while crafting, cleaning, exercising
10. ask friends for book recommendations

Where do I find all of these books?

I'm a big fan of Anne Bogel, aka Modern Mrs. Darcy. This year she put together 2 fun reading challenge lists, she has a podcast called What Should I Read Next? where she interviews people and performed literary matchmaking, and she has a daily Kindle deals email. I'll be honest y'all - this daily email is dangerous. Best selling books for $2 and $3?! If it's a great deal, I sometimes buy the book. Other times, I search for it as a library eBook (see below!)

My favorite way to get books is for free! I downloaded the Overdrive app and signed in with my local library card. I can borrow Kindle books for 2-3 weeks (it's set by the publisher/library). You can put a hold on a book and it will email you when it's ready for you to check out. I've found 2 downsides to this method - (1) you can't always get the book you want when you want it (2) the book won't be readable anymore after the expiration date... so if you won't be done in time, you have to put your kindle on airplane mode. I didn't realize the date was coming up (even though I got an email reminding me!!) and only got through 80% of a book. I immediately put another hold on it, but had to wait 2 months to read the other 20%!!

I pin things to my board called The Library on Pinterest too! I have book lists and more pinned there.

This year, I tried audiobooks for the first time. You can get an Audible subscription (and there are several membership plans from which to choose) or borrow them from Overdrive. I've found that I prefer non-fiction books on audio, but many people like fiction as well. I get annoyed by the reader's voice when they try to speak as different characters. I know, I'm weird.

I did a reading challenge in 2015 where I chose my own books from a list of prompts. It was fun and got me to read books I might not have chosen otherwise. It definitely helped me get back into reading on a regular basis. If reading isn't a big part of your life currently, you might want to start with a challenge. I found this "master list" of reading challenges that might be helpful!

If you want to track your books, consider Goodreads. You can connect with friends, rate/review your books, keep a running "to be read" list so you don't forget good titles, and join groups. Friend me if you're on Goodreads!

Any tips you'd like to share?

I love reading each and every comment! Be sure to keep up with me on Instagram, Pinterest, and Facebook!

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