Once upon a time, you were devouring book after book, almost in parallel to your unlimited supply of Easter Eggs. Everything was grand: your mother just called up the stairs to see if you wanted another cup of tea, your bed has never been more inviting and you’re blissfully ignoring that essay that’s due when you start University again.
However, one day, as you put down “The Versions of Us” by Laura Barnett (I enjoyed that one), and you stare up at your shelves and your still half-unpacked suitcase filled with books, you feel a sense of emptiness, and your attention span has diminished. One might even call it a block.
You know it, it’s the dreaded Reader’s Block.
Nothing is particularly standing out to you. You’ve either read it before, it’s too similar to what you’ve previously read, it’s too out of your comfort zone to read right now or my most-used excuse, you just can’t commit to reading a whole series.
Are you particularly busy? No. Have you lost an interest in reading altogether? Definitely not. Have you gotten into… the film versions instead???? Of course not.
So here’s the thing. You want to get back into reading, but your brain has completely shut down all interest in books. So I’ve compiled a list of the 5 things you need to do to get back in the zone. You’re welcome.
- Get recommendations from a friend. The fresh perspective and the incentive of definitely having someone to discuss the book with may spur you on to have an interest and also finish it. It helps if you have a friend (or even a family member, actually) that has the same interests as you.
- Go online or to your nearest book store and find something random. Despite the fact you’ll be leaving the cosy and inviting comfort zone you were fretting about earlier, you need a breath of fresh air- why not have it in the form of a new book?
- Download a free book! There are so many free books out there for you to read that you can get out of the horrible Block without having to spend a penny! Then you can buy in bulk when you’re reading game is stronger than ever before. Also on kindles they tend to tell you how many pages you have left and how long it will take for you to finish books these days, so maybe that’ll keep you motivated. The first one is always the hardest.
- Get a book you know you’ll enjoy- maybe read a book you read a few years ago, or a different book from one of your favourite authors. It’d be like having a pizza you know you love just with some different toppings. With Rainbow Rowell, even though she writes about many different things and she targets them to slightly different audiences, I’ve enjoyed everything she’s written. I even got to meet her two years ago, that was cool.
- If you really can’t bring yourself to pick up a book right now, just hang around in the book community. Join a forum, or go caveman style and communicate in the outside world. Maybe do what I did and set up a blog of your own so you can write about books. Or join The Student Room. Or stop procrastinating by surfing the internet, make another cup of tea and read a book. Books are inanimate objects, so they literally cannot move. They’ll always be there. Unmoving. Waiting for you.
Like the famous Writer’s Block, at the end of the day it’s just a hiatus, and hiatuses end. There is hope for every single one of you.