Taking a Break from Reading Is Not a Bad Thing

Or: Why I think reading slumps can be useful

The photo used for this post is there to show some of my other interests which I get into in this post, I wanted to do this for the featured photo to show that reading doesn’t always need to be something to stress yourself out over, but rather to enjoy the time you do get to read. So, I’m going to actually get into what I wanted to talk about now:

I think we can all agree that social media puts pressure upon all of us no matter what we use social media for, but the pressures are definitely present on people who use social media as an outlet to discuss their love of books and reading. Many people have spoken about this and I love to know if any of you reading this have made posts, twitter threads etc on this topic! I felt the need to make this post because of the lack of time I’ve had to read recently.

Of all the “non-readers” I know, many of them say that they don’t read in part because of how time-consuming it is, and I agree with them. Reading takes a lot of time and finding the time is not easy, especially for those in school, or with jobs, or both. I don’t really know if I agree with the idea that some people are just ‘fast readers’ or ‘slow readers’ because to a certain extent the speed at which you finish a book relates to how much time you have to read, at least for me. I wouldn’t consider myself a fast reader at all, but if you give me some free time I can get through a decent amount of books in a few weeks. I don’t read many books a year, and I blame that on my lack of reading time, but also something else that I want to get to in this post.

As you can probably assume, I am making a talkative post like this because I haven’t read anything to review recently, and that’s okay. Stuff comes up and people get busy, and I don’t want to put pressure on myself for something I consider a hobby when school will always be my first priority.

The main point I wanted to talk about in this post though how reading is a really difficult hobby to have when you also have other hobbies. As I said, my priority is school, but I of course have other things I enjoy that I like to make time for. The issue for me is a lot of the things I enjoy are very time-consuming hobbies, such as watching movies, watching TV, and reading. All 3 of those things need a few hours allocated to them in order to put a dent into the amount that I want to watch/read. If I want to go to a movie, that’s a huge chunk of time out of my day. If I want to catch up in TV, I’d need a few hours, If I want to read a book, I’d love to have enough time to get through a big chunk of it in one sitting or else I risk forgetting details.

Those are just 2 other hobbies I have besides reading, some other things I really enjoy include cross stitching/embroidery (which I got into over this past Christmas), Writing/Editing/Filmmaking in general (I hope to make more short films soon), exploring the city, and playing video games to mention a few.

My issue with reading comes during certain times when competitiveness becomes an issue in the YA community. The fact that people, including myself, sometimes feel like because they didn’t read 100+ books in the year they don’t belong on bookstagram, booktube etc. is not okay. I’m sure nobody does this on purpose, and I applaud those who read a ton (there is obviously nothing wrong with reading a lot of books), but when I start feeling like nobody will want to listen to what I have to say about my fav books, or the books I want to read because I haven’t read as many books as most people it’s really unmotivating.

I feel like I am getting off track a bit though because I don’t want to focus this on competitiveness in the community. I feel like that issue has gotten A LOT better recently and I don’t often feel that way anymore.

What I do want to stay focused on is the fact that when I am not in the mood to read, I shouldn’t be focusing on ‘how am I going to get out of this slump’ or ‘how can I force myself to find time to read’ when I COULD be focusing on ‘how can I use this time when I don’t feel like reading, to focus my creativeness in other areas.’

I think reading slumps can be good, and that they should be an indication that maybe a break from reading would be beneficial. Finding new hobbies is an amazing feeling and I love getting into new creative tasks. This year I am trying to learn how to become a better screenwriter so I don’t have to rely on others when I want to start making short films again. This all came from a brief stint when I wasn’t in the mood to read because of how busy school had become. So, next time you are in a slump, try and focus on how it can be a good way to direct your creativeness to other interests you have!

I know this is a bit of a mess of a post but I find it really hard to put into words how I feel about this topic. Maybe I feel this way because I stopped reading from grades 7ish to 10, and once I got back into reading again I got into book social media and there was a huge pressure to read a lot. I need to remind myself that I also need to focus on my other interests, and at the end of the day, what matters is that I am pursuing happiness in my hobbies. If that means not reading for a few weeks, so be it!

I really want to hear everyones thoughts on this so PLEASE let me know what you think. Agree? Disagree? I wanna hear it all! feel free to comment on this post or reach out to me on twitter or insta (both @wrenandbooks)

Love you all

-wren

 

 

2 thoughts on “Taking a Break from Reading Is Not a Bad Thing

  1. I really loved reading your thoughts on this topic! I totally agree that in the book community there’s a LOT of pressure to read a high amount of books each month and we all need to take time to focus on our other interests and just ourselves in general. All in all yaaaas preach girl, I feel ya 100% 👏🏻👏🏻

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