Reading slumps suck. I should know, because I’ve been in plenty of them. When I’m in a reading slump, nothing captures my attention. I can’t get more than 50 pages into a book without tossing it aside. My TBR grows and grows, while all I do is rewatch Lost and Supernatural.
It’s normal that your brain needs to take a break from reading every once in a while, Reading requires concentration, it’s an active experience rather than a passive one. So don’t feel bad for taking some time away from reading if you need to. But if that doesn’t help to get out of your reading slump, here are some of my all-time favourite tips!
Surround yourself with books
One thing I love to do when I’m in a reading slump: reorganize my bookshelves! I love going through the books that I love, seeing them usually reminds me of a certain time in my life when I was reading that particular book. Going to a bookstore or the library can also help. Sometimes, surrounding myself with books is all I need to get excited about reading again.
Take some time away from the internet
I’m currently reading a book called The Shallows: What The Internet is Doing To Our Brains, and it talks about how the internet has affected our attention span. According to the author of the book, the typical electronic screen is an “ecosystem of interruption technologies”. If you find that you keep checking your phone and you can’t get into your book, maybe it’s a good idea to take a bit of an internet break or leave your phone in another room.
Make better use of your Goodreads
If you love reading as much as I do, there’s a big chance you have a Goodreads account. If you update it regularly, there are all kinds of cool features you can check out. I love the yearly progress stats, where you can see how much you’ve read. There is an extensive giveaway page and tons of interesting lists, like the Best Biographies of English Royalty list, not to mention this amazing cult classics list. And it’s so much fun to add a bunch of interesting books to your TBR!
Go for a pageturner
A good and easy-to-read ‘whodunnit’ type of book might want to keep you reading. A thriller would be a good choice, especially if you don’t read them often. Most thrillers follow the same simple formula, complete with satisfactory ending. I usually also turn to thrillers when I have something stressful going on in my personal life, because it’s the perfect book to lose yourself in.
Read something light
Graphic novels or comics are short and sweet. I don’t actually read these much myself these days, but I’ve heard it does wonders for others in reading slumps. When I was a teenager I used to be big into Manga, and even these days I’ll sometimes pick up an old favourite when I don’t feel like reading. It helps!
Listen to an Audiobook
Something else I’m not a huge fan of (I know, I’m super boring) but that works for plenty of others, listening to an audiobook! The great thing about audiobooks is that you can listen to them while doing other things, like driving or getting ready in the morning. Trouble getting into a book? As long as you keep listening, you keep making progress.
Reread an old favourite
This is something that I do often and it always works. When you can’t get into new books. pick up something you know you’ll like! Ideally, reread something that you love but that you haven’t picked up recently. I have a small stack on my bookshelf with a few books that I read and loved a few years ago, and really want to reread. I tend to pick up one of those when I’m in a reading slump. And if all else fails.. Just pick up Harry Potter.