I’m occasionally asked for reading tips. Here is what worked for me to increase the number of books I buy that I then read.
While I notice that I spend less time reading articles when I read more books, there are some terrific writers who create most of their work in that form, so I also have a tech hack for saving articles I come across on the internet. I save them to Pocket (it’s easy to install a “save to Pocket” in your browser or use the app) but mostly I end up scanning them. Deep dive reading I save for books.
I got a subscription to Audible and that unexpectedly created momentum with my reading. For books that don’t require as much thinking power, I listen to them at 1½ speed while exercising and finish fast—and then I’m inspired to move onto the next one.
I have the experience—and I’m pretty sure I’m not alone—that too much screen time is soul-sucking. Getting some of my reading done through my ears is what works for me.
Sometimes I need two versions of the same book. I’ve discovered that I need to buy a second copy on Kindle or paper because my recall is significantly better if I see words rather than hear them. Since I like to make notes about what I read—especially if I’m going to quote the author—having duplicates is something I’ve come to allow myself. I’ve become a fan of ThriftBooks for buying used books for this purpose when I’m okay to not have Kindle access.
A couple more tech hacks that have helped with reading:
Using the app Leio to track what I’m reading. I put in the book, how long it is, start a timer when I start and stop it when I finish a session. I don’t know—it charms my “check it off the list” brain.
I put my book library into Goodreads (that was a project). One of the reasons I stopped reading is that I couldn’t keep track of what I wanted to read, what I had read—it just felt like I was full-up.
I used to remember titles and authors by place memory—what the book cover looked like when I held it or it sat on my nightstand, especially its color and the way the title and author’s name appeared. I lost that when I went to Kindle, but it’s much more tiring for my eyes to read paper books as I age, and I love having a “stack” of books in my travel bag that takes up the size of a small notebook. Goodreads has helped me with a different way to “remember” titles and authors.
Happy reading! and make sure to follow my newsletter—I feature what I’m reading each week.