Reading Speed

I read a lot. I’m talking an extreme amount. Reading was always something that I do. All through Elementary, middle, and most of high school I read every single night. In college, I picked up reading every night again. It’s something that kept me moving forward with doing something I love. However it wasn’t until six months ago that I kicked it into an over drive. Previously it took me on average two weeks to read a book. In some cases it would take me nearly a month. (I’m looking at you Cloud Atlas). However, there are also books that I can devour in less than 48 hours. (Mockingjay, Catching Fire, any Harry Potter).

Recently my reading overdrive has also inspired me to reach out and read even more books. My interest and to be read list has blossomed into something that is intimidating. It’s hundreds of books long, filled with novels that range from can’t keep the excitement inside of me to seems like it may be interesting. As a result, I’ve determined that in order for me to enjoy my old favorites and also read a majority of books I’ve never read, I’d need to pick up my throughput. My previous pace yielded me 15-20 books a year. It was leisurely. Last year I read 39 books (that doesn’t include any manga series that I read, one of which contained 38 volumes). And that pace was only with me getting serious in late July.

My current goal is 100 books. As I mentioned previously, a novel counts as 1, a graphic novel counts as 1, an entire manga series counts as 1. The manga one is tough, considering a manga can be 2 volumes or can be 42. As such I may need to change up how I count them to properly equate the amount of reading that I’m doing. Either way, 100 books is a lot. It’s a book every 3.65 days. I’m already behind, but certain I will catch up due to overlap. Most importantly, I have taken improving my reading speed very carefully.

I read slow, very slow. I take in every word, every sentence. Looping back on a sentence isn’t uncommon for me. I take it all in an effort to make sure I actually understand what’s going on. I could read faster, but I don’t remember what happens. I lose the elegance in the writing if I speed over things. So I’ve been working on reading faster. If I can knock off even a few minutes or stay up a little bit faster. I progress faster. I can read more. I can gain more influences and find more new book loves. I’ve contemplated learning to speed read, but that seems like it would take the fun out of what is a relaxing activity for me. I also can’t seem to wrap my head around how I would retain anything that I read.

What are your reading goals for the year?

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