At the risk of making assumptions and doing just that, I think I can speak for everyone when I say that reading slumps are a universal experience.
I uploaded a video this past weekend talking about some reasons as to why I’ve been in a reading slump for the better half of two months. And let me just say…
It sucks. It’s not fun. Especially if you’re a person who feels fulfillment from reading and reviewing books like I am.
While making that video was very cathartic for me and has helped me slowly emerge from this slump, I also asked myself what I could do next time I feel a slump coming on to avoid/better prepare for it.
And so, this list was born. Here are 6 ways to avoid a reading slump. Enjoy!
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#1: Stop forcing yourself to read a book if you’re not enjoying it.
I am personally a reading that absolutely hates DNF’ing books. It just feels wrong to me!
Because I hate leaving books unread, I usually make it a priority to finish them even if I’m dragging my feet through the pages. If you do this too, here is my call on you to stop doing it.
For one, it’s completely fine to DNF a book you’re not feelin’. Even if it’s wildly praised and popular. Even if it’s a classic. Even if your best friend bought it for you because they thought you’d like it.
DNF the book and replace it with something better.
Signs that you need to DNF your current read:
– It’s boring
– It’s offensive/triggering
– You’re taking forever to read it
– It’s too complicated to understand
– You’re just not liking it for some reason
#2: Make a list of the reason you love reading (and/or what makes your favorite books great).
Sometimes when a slump really knocks you off your reading A-game, you start questioning why should you even continue reading in the first place.
I’ve been there. It sucks.
Making a list of the reasons you love reading may help remind you of all of the good things that reading brings to your life. Or alternatively, making a list of the things that really hype you up about your favorite book/series may spark a quest to find those same elements in new books!
Here, I’ll go first:
I love reading because….
– It’s fun and it expands my imagination
– It provides a method of healthy escapism/coping with hard times
– It teaches me things such a critical thinking and grammar techniques that I can use in my own writing
#3: Re-read a favorite book that you haven’t read in awhile.
Remember how I said make a list of the things you love about your favorite book? Well, maybe that list will inspire you to revisit that world once more!
Re-reading books is always a fun time for me because I usually can remember sensory details about what was happening around me when I was reading it for the first time.
For instance, I have a clear memory of reading P.S. I Still Love You (the second book in the To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before series by Jenny Han) in my 5th period Spanish 3 class in high school. I’m not sure why I remember those specific details about the experience, but I do!
Fun reading exercise idea!
Make a list of the details you can remember about your life/mood/environment when you were reading your favorite book for the first time. Get as descriptive as you see necessary.
#4: Finish a series you started.
Sometimes reading slumps can be brought on by paralyzing nature having a huge physical TBR. (If you relate to this, allow me to remind you that you can and will get through it one book at a time!)
Finishing (or at least continuing) a book series you previously started can give you some kind of direction with your reading goals. This may also be good for those of us who can never seem to pick a book to read. (#BibliophileProblems)
Note to self: series I need to finish are…
– The Legend trilogy by Stephanie Garber
– The Red Queen series by Victoria Aveyard
#5: Browse Netgalley, Edelweiss+, Book Sirens & for eARCs!
If re-reading your favorite books or finishing a series you started aren’t doing it for you, there’s always opportunities for new reads online!
Platforms such as Netgalley, Edelweiss+, Book Sirens, and more provide opportunities to browse and apply for access to eARCs of upcoming book releases! Best part is that most of the time, these services are free!
Here are some of the titles I’ve been able to get and review for free through these platforms!
#6: Buy new books if the ones online or on your shelf aren’t calling you
(Yes, I purposefully saved this one last because I know you were wondering).
When all else fails, buying new books can be a great restart to your reading engine. Sometimes it truly takes a brand new story with a new world and brand new characters to get us back on the reading wagon.
Personally, I’m at this part of this list. I’m excited to purchase new books to read an review on the blog, so if you’re interested, stay tuned!
Let’s chat in the comments: what gets you through a reading slump?