A few months ago, I saw Sylvia Day speak at the Liberty States writer’s conference. She was an amazing speaker and incredibly inspiring. The number one thing she said that stuck with me? Always make time for reading! As writers, it’s our life blood. And I’ll admit it; with how busy I’ve been, in the last eight months reading fell to the bottom of my to-do list–in fact, it’s possible that it fell entirely off my to-do list at one point.
But recently, I’ve been making an effort to remedy this. Reading inspires me; it takes me away and brings me pleasure in a way that zoning out in front of the television could never do. And it’s easy to forget how much I love it. Lots of my readers are extremely busy people; you all have full time jobs, children, spouses, friends, other hobbies, etc, and many of you manage to read fast and constantly! THAT is my inspiration to find time. If you all can make the time to read? Well, hell… then I should be able to, as well!
We all can make an excuses, but at the end of the day, if something brings me pleasure (while also being so good for my brain and soul), why oh WHY was I allowing it to slip away? As a result, I’ve created a list of ways that has helped me make time for my reading. And if you’re busy too, maybe it will help you! =)
1) Get Ye to the Library
I buy books. A lot of books. A lot of books that I may never get to read because there are just so many on my TBR pile. But when I borrow a book from the library? There’s an expiration date. I have to read that book by a certain date or forfeit it. And holy hell, does that motivate me. I thrive on deadlines.
2) Get Ye the Kindle App for your Smartphone
I don’t like reading on my phone. It’s small. It’s annoying. After a long time, it’ll hurt my eyes (especially because I spend most of my day staring at screens). However, having the app there is PERFECT for those moments that I forgot to bring a book and I find myself bored. For example? The time I’m meeting a friend at the bar, but she’s running 20 minutes late. That’s 20 minutes of reading that if I don’t have the kindle app, I’ll spend staring at Facebook or Twitter. I’ll be staring at the phone screen anyway… I might as well be reading.
3) Read with Peers
Join a bookclub–virtual or in person. Again, the accountability thing. Plus, you’re reading for comprehension and it’s a whole new way to look at a book.
4) Read Two Books At Once
Okay, so this may not work for everyone. But I get more reading done when I can alternate what it is I’m reading–almost like when I hit writer’s block; I can break that wall down by popping over to a new story and writing that instead. By reading more than one book at a time, I break myself of fatigue. And usually, I read one non-fiction book and one fiction book (so the plots don’t get cross-wired in my brain).
5) Read Right Before Bed or During Your Lunch Break
Now, this could backfire. If you’re anything like me, within a few pages, you’ll get so immersed in the story, you’ll end up staying awake for an extra hour to finish the next chapter… and the next, and the next. The solution to this? Head to bed a little earlier. As for the lunch break, I usually rush through eating and then go right back to work. Those 30 minutes (or for some of us, 60 minutes) are built in to your schedule. You deserve that break… so take it. Even if you finish eating in ten minutes, instead of rushing back to your desk or your email… bring your book, relax and do some reading!
So… with that being said, what’s everyone reading right now? I just started Megan Crane’s MC book, Make You Burn and it is keeping me up at night with all it’s sexy bad boy goodness!