I am a literature student and have always had a passion for reading and writing.
I think that many people miss out on the joys of reading because they don't have the right guides to help them—especially teenagers. To most, reading seems like a compulsory and unexciting activity, when really it's a gateway into a world of adventure and passion. There's no feeling like reading a really good book and the excitement that comes with that—for example, waking up in the morning with anticipation to see what trouble your characters run into next.
The fact that only 20% of U.S teens read books for pleasure really saddens me because the other 80% don't know what they're missing. So if you're one of those people who want to get into reading but don't know where to start, then this article is a perfect guide for you to achieve your goal of making reading a part of your everyday life.
Test Out Different Genres
My first tip on starting to read regularly with enjoyment would be to try a variety of genres and authors until you find one that suits your interest most, whether it be a riveting murder mystery or a tragic romance filled with passion and love. Whatever piques your interest should be what you start with; however, make sure that once you're comfortable with a certain type of writing you continue to branch out and try something different.
Set a Time to Read
In order to make reading a part of your daily routine, setting a specific time will greatly increase the chances of it becoming a habit. I recommend reading just before you go to sleep. As well as being a great time to make a habit, it is also a great way to relax your body and mind without looking at a phone screen, which has been proven to make it harder to sleep. It is recommended to read around a half-hour before bed; this gives your muscles time to relax and slows down your breathing, leaving you in a calmer state.
"Take a good book to bed with you—books don't snore."
— Thea Dorn
Don't Judge a Book Too Quickly
Another very important tip is that if you start reading a book and you find it boring at first, do not give up on it! Some of the best books are those that have a slow beginning. If after a couple of chapters you are still finding it incredibly dull, then feel free to move on and find another book. Just be cautious not to judge it too early. A huge amount of beginners (including myself at one point) use this as an excuse to give up. So keep going!
Tips to Make Sure You Won't Get Distracted
- Make sure your phone is upside down and on silent.
- Organize everything you need beforehand so you can completely focus on your book.
- Have a bottle of water next to you so that you don't have to get up midway.
- Go into a quiet and peaceful room so that there aren't any sounds distracting you.
Why Don't Teens Read?
Teenagers often refuse reading because they would rather do something that takes less concentration and seems more relaxing This is because a day in the life of a teenager is extremely stressful with constant worries such as keeping up with school work as well as staying socially active. In order to read regularly, you must enjoy the book you're reading at the very least; otherwise, it will just be another task in your busy day.
Furthermore, in the modern world teenagers look to their phones for comfort when in need of relaxation. This is because phones are unchallenging and effortless. This makes reading seem like something only to be done in school; however, this could not be more wrong. In my experience, a good book can take you into it and make you feel everything the characters feel, almost giving you a new life when you want to escape yours. This is something your phone could never do, as far as I'm concerned. Although it is a challenge to get into reading, you'll thank yourself later for it.
Here is a list of great books to get started with:
- We Were Liars by E.Lockhart
- One of Us Is Lying (series) by Karen M. McManus
- Seed by Lisa Heathfield
- The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
- They Both Die at the End by Adam Silvera
- A Court of Thorns and Roses (series) by Sarah J. Maas
- The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
These books range from mystery to fantasy to romance. These books are a great gateway to continuous reading. Good luck!
A Court of Thorns and Roses on Amazon
May Straus (author) from England on August 19, 2020:
Absolutely! Thank you so much for your input. Personally I have not read the books you have mentioned but I will definitely give them a go.
Literarycreature from Argentina on August 19, 2020:
Good advice! If you allow me, I would like to add a few book recommendations :
1984 - George Orwell
Fahrenheit 451 - Ray Bradbury
Brave New World - Aldous Huxley
I thought of these books because I believe that adolescence is a great time to read science-fiction, it is very interesting and it challenges you to think, opening your eyes to many aspects of the world you have never considered.
The only book I have read of the ones you recommended is "The book thief" and I absolutely agree with you, it's great!