Have you lost that reading feeling? Sweet Savage Flame suggests 7 strategies to end that reading slump and get your mojo back!
So You’re In a Reading Slump
Do you have trouble finishing that book, even though, objectively, there’s nothing wrong with it? Or perhaps you can’t gather enough enthusiasm to start that new novel you’ve heard so much about. We’ve all been there.
L’ennui affects everyone from time to time. Doing things we love seems tiresome or uninteresting. If this feeling persists for many months, it may be due to overwork, stress, or even depression. Getting to the root of your problem first is critical.
In many cases, losing your reading mojo is a normal experience for people who read books regularly. We know a few methods to reignite your love of fiction.
7 Ways to Bring Excitement Back to Your Reading
Sweet Savage Flame has some advice on how to get you out of that reading slump. Hopefully, one or more of these strategies will help.
1 – Make an Effort to Read Every Day
Even if you only read 10 pages a day, that’s fine. If you finish a chapter a day, great! But don’t force yourself to read more than you enjoy. As the plot progresses, you may find it engaging.
2 – Don’t Feel Pressured to Read Anything You’re Not Interested In
Read what you want. Whether it’s the next big thing hitting the rounds, an old classic, or a novel on the 1000 books you must read before you die list, follow your desires. Don’t feel beholden to the latest trends.
Conversely, don’t feel forced to read oldies that everyone (cough, Sweet Savage Flame) says you have to read to understand the genre.
Whether your tastes run to cozy small-town love stories, romances featuring spider-aliens, the hottest series by a nig name author, or short novellas under 150 pages, read what appeals to your personal tastes.
3 – Remove Bothersome Distractions
It’s hard to read when a flurry of activity is around you. If you’re on a work break, read those 10 pages (or more) in your car. Create a special reading nook for yourself at home with a comfy chair and blanket. If there’s sound, noise-canceling headphones are a great way to eliminate the nuisance. Read in your laundry room if it’s the only place you can without being disturbed.
4 – Get a Reading Buddy to Get Out of the Slump
Whether you know the person from your day-to-day life or have just spoken online, having a buddy helps; it’s great to have someone to discuss the current novel you’re reading. You can use numerous apps, from Goodreads to Twitter to Discord to What’s App and more, to communicate.
Book clubs don’t need to take place face-face. Use video conferencing methods such as Google Hangouts, FaceTime, Skype Meet Now, Discord, or Signal.
5 – Always Carry Something to Read Wherever You Go
Whether it’s a paperback, your e-reader, or your mobile phone, always bring something to read wherever you go. Make sure to download at least 2-3 books, so you have some variety.
6 – Mix It Up!
Diversify what you read to prevent boredom. I enjoy romance, history, detective stories, pulp, true crime, and many other genres. You wouldn’t want to eat pizza every day, so why read the same kind of book all the time? Most genres–especially romance–have subgenres and tropes and mini-tropes.
If you’ve been bingeing a particular author, try another who writes in an entirely different style. Agatha Christie’s mysteries are markedly different from Stephen King’s horror stories.
If you don’t have enough time to read during the day, then listen to an audiobook. Some have stellar production qualities like a radio play. You can enjoy them on the ride to work or while doing chores around the house.
There is so much variety to choose from, don’t be afraid to read outside your comfort zone.
7 – Keep a Reading Journal, Blog, or Micro-blog
Write about what you read, even if it’s just a paragraph or two. Having a buddy read is great for this, but you can also do it alone. After reading your daily ten pages–or however much–write it in your reading planner/ journal or on the apps we mentioned in method #4.
Jot down your feelings about what you’ve come across, a plot event, or a quote. It doesn’t need to be much. Focus on what you enjoyed about the book. If you can’t find anything of interest, then maybe that’s a sign you should put the book down for now of DNF.
When All Else Fails, Read an Old Favorite
One more piece of advice that we neglected from the list. This never fails to take us out of slumps: re-read an old favorite. No, not a novel you liked from a long time ago but haven’t thought about in ages.
Choose a book that’s like a pair of well-worn slippers–one you’ve experienced at least twice and know you adore. That way, you will get precisely what you’re expecting.
Comfort reads are to slumps as peppery chicken soup is to a common cold. They may not cure you immediately, but they’ll make you feel better.
Have you ever had a bad reading slump? If so, what do you do to shake it off? Have you ever employed the methods we recommend?
If so, please let us know by leaving a comment, and let’s talk romance.