I know a lot of people are struggling to read during this age when the world is so uncertain. It’s totally understandable.
To be honest, for the past seven years since I went to college, I haven’t been reading like I used to in high school. I read A LOT in high school. I could read multiple books a week. But I got really busy in college and stayed busy.
Now that we’re in the middle of a pandemic and the world is on fire, I finally have the time to sit down and consistently read again. I never wasn’t reading, I just wasn’t reading like I used to.
I did however read more nonfiction which is a treat.
But my true love lies with fiction.
Now that I have the time, I realized that when I sit down and read, I feel a lot calmer. I know not everyone does and I struggle with the constant urge to be doing something “more productive”.
But sitting down and reading more has really helped me feel more at peace with what’s going on. Things might be a dumpster fire right now, except when I have books.
In a previous post, I mentioned why I think books are essential and how I think they can help us. In this post, I’d like to discuss different ways we can find peace and joy in books.
To summerise my previous post:
- Books provide us with escape when we can’t travel
- Books give us relief from the current events
- Books provide a sense of stability
With these points in mind, I’d like to expand on more ways we can enjoy books, even when we don’t feel particularly like reading.
Books let us know we are not alone.
Books allow us to slow down in our fast paced world.
Ways you can be reading more right now:
Listen to audio books.
Thanks to our smartphones and a surge in commuting times, we have more ways to listen to audiobooks outside our CD players and more reasons to do so today. If audiobooks aren’t your thing, I love podcasts.
If I’m not reading a book, I’m usually listening to a podcast or an audiobook right before bed. I don’t like watching TV before bed, I personally try not to have a TV in my bedroom. But I will put on a podcast.
Read short stories.
Short stories count as reading even if you are just reading a 1,000 words. There are a lot of great anthologies out there and if you haven’t tried short stories yet, I recommend finding an anthology you would enjoy.
Read a chapter a night.
This is my to-go-to secret for reading more often. I will often put my phone away (I try not to read on my phone although I have a kindle) and instead read right before bed. They say you’re not supposed to be on your phone an hour before you sleep so this is why it’s a great solution. It gives you something to do and you don’t have to be on technology.
Support indie authors and indie bookstores.
The pandemic is hitting everyone hard right now, but if you’re in a position where you can spend a little, supporting an indie author or bookstore is a GREAT choice. Especially supporting BIPOC would be an even smarter choice.
I read an article the other day that said by the time the pandemic is over, 50% of black businesses will be closed for good. And I think that’s just unacceptable. So there’s no better time to be support small businesses and small creators. The big corporations will survive, but we should be doing our best to help out those who could really use it.
Support your local library.
Another area to support are our local libraries. A lot of them are offering local curbside pickup now so it’s pretty safe to be renting books and other materials. This is a great option if you want to show support but can’t spend a lot of money right now.
Every time you order a book or a material, the library keeps track of demand. If enough people recommend a certain book or genre, the library will be able to order more copies or similar materials.
Then you can post about it on social media and at least help promote the book or material you’re using! You don’t have to spend a lot of money, but it still shows that we’re supporting our community.
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