It happens to the best of us—the most avid readers have encountered moments in their lives where they’re just not motivated to read anymore. Sometimes it’s due to personal reasons, like a burn-out, and other times it’s simply inexplicable.
Last year I was in a major reading slump where I read a whopping total of 10 books by December. This year, I’ve read 33 books—and it’s only July (which might still be low by book bloggers’ standards, but progress is what matters!).
I figured out a bunch of things to do that drew me back to the world of literature.
Here’s a list of what you can do as well to get over that wretched reading slump:
1. Reorganize your book shelves
I found that I had way too many books that I had forgotten about. Books that I swore I’d pick up as soon as I had some free time were gathering dust, unbeknownst to me.
When you start picking up every single book on your book shelf to reorganize them, you tend to come across your favorite books or unread books that you were initially excited about. While it might seem like an overwhelming process at first, it personally helped me get back into reading. I donated the books that I didn’t want in my collection anymore, and plus, having a neater bookshelf made me look forward to reading the books I’m genuinely interested in.
2. Read fast-paced or shorter books
When you’re in a slump, you probably don’t feel like reading a dense 1000 page book. I found that reading a lot of fast-paced novels or anthologies nursed back my love for literature, and I eventually started branching out again into a variety of genres.
Horror, thriller, and mystery books might be your best bet for fast-paced books, as action and a sense of suspense are likely to keep you hooked to the book.
3. Read graphic novels
Yep, this counts as reading too! Graphic novels might get the reputation that they mainly target children and teenagers, or that it’s not “real” reading. But that couldn’t be further from the truth – there are a variety of subgenres perfectly suitable for everyone, and can provide as much depth as a traditional novel, such as Maus by Art Spiegelman.
4. Set a small goal every day
This might sound a bit counterintuitive at first. Won’t pressuring yourself to reach a goal make you more prone to staying in a slump?
The key is to have a realistic and small goal. It can consist of reading 15 minutes before bed, or reading 10 pages, or a single chapter daily. Developing a routine for yourself is important to get yourself back into a habit, and this will eventually feel more natural to you the more you do it.
5. Join a book community or get a reading buddy
Whether it’s working out or going to an event, doing activities with someone else might be the ultimate motivator to get back into the swing of things.
Even something as simple as signing up to a Goodreads and StoryGraph account made me more excited to start reading again. Coming across like-minded people who recommend books of my favorite genres rekindled my passion for reading – and even writing!
And don’t underestimate the power of online book clubs/forums, those count too! Sometimes, it’s easier to do an activity when you know you’re going to have a discussion about it with someone.
Of course, you shouldn’t ever feel pressured to read during a time where you just want a break from it, it can be well-needed – things happen. And it’s also okay to not reach your goals on a daily basis; reading as a hobby should be a fun activity at the end of the day. Hopefully, this list helps!
Do you have any methods of overcoming a reading slump? Or do you just ride it out until you’re randomly in the mood for reading again?