So, a book slump, a.k.a. the most dreaded thing that can happen to a book lover.
Y’all must be tired of me talking about it, but I’m genuinely in a huge book slump! I just cannot for the life of me pick up a book and read it. I’d much rather just waste hours on Youtube or Netflix or any other streaming site…. It’s ridiculous but it’s my life now.
But, since I want to look on the bright side of things, I’ve decided to reflect not on what I’ve been missing out, but on what my book slump has taught me:
If a book isn’t working, drop it
I cannot tell you how many times I’ve powered through a horrible book because I thought it would get better eventually. This very act has thrown me into huge book slumps because I kept forcing myself to read something I just wasn’t into. If it starts feeling like a chore, then it probably isn’t good for you, you know? (and wow can this apply to so many things!)
Sometimes… it’s all about the timing
Somewhat contradicting to the first point I made above, but more lately than not I’ve noticed that books I had left behind because I wasn’t really in the mood for, I’ve picked up again and absolutely loved them. An example would be The Heart Forger by Rin Chupeco, which I had picked up as an audiobook a few months ago. I wasn’t feeling it so I dropped it, but when I got a Hardcover copy some weeks later, I powered through it in less than a day.
There’s really not an accurate reason as to why I didn’t like them before but do now, but maybe by deciding not to read a book in a particular moment (see point #1), I can pick it up when I feel truly in the mindset to read it, which does wonders for my enjoyment of the book.
Slow and steady sometimes wins the race
I think this has been the hardest lesson I’ve learned from being in a book slump, because I used to be able to read 300-400 page books in a day, but now it takes me maybe a week or more.
I was constantly frustrated with myself that I wasn’t reading “fast” enough that I would sort of sabotage myself and read even slower which took the whole fun out of reading for me for a while.
I’ve noticed that reading at a slower pace has helped me absorb more details and even remember events better than had I sped read it in a matter of hours.
This is not to say that those who read fast are reading wrong or whatever, I’m just speaking to myself and my experience.
Challenges are good…. but,
I’ve talked about this before, about when you don’t reach your Goodreads challenge, but this time around I feel it even more. Normally each year I set my reading goal to about 100 books, but this year I set it to 50 and by Goodreads standards, I’m incredibly behind. If I’m being completely honest with myself I probably won’t reach my reading goal because I’m so involved in college things that I’m simply not going to have time.
The anxiety and frustration at not being able to reach a certain goal is SO slump inducing and frankly not worth it. So, I’ve decided to take things as they go, because the important thing is to read, right?
Reading… Costs Money?!
This is obviously something I knew before, but now that I’ve actually been reading less I realize how much money had gone into my book collection before and… I gotta cut back. Book sales and preorder perks used to be my kryptonite but now I know better.
I made a resolution this year: If I’m not reading books, I’m not going to buy them either. This is both to punish myself and also because I realized the extent of my unread books is… a lot. The only books I’ve told myself to buy are sequels or follow ups from favorite authors (or cheap ebooks bc I can never say no to those…)
Because of my slump I’ve just been picking up unread books already on my shelves, and I’ve thankfully made a dent on my unread books and discovered some hidden gems that I had ignored because of other shiny new books I kept buying.
Change it up!
Because of my slump I’ve noticed that I like absorbing stories in different ways. Whether it’s through Netflix marathoning sessions or Podcasts or even fanfics, while I haven’t been reading “official” books I have been getting my narrative fix in one way or another. This has been good for me because whenever I finish let’s say, a tv series, and I’m left with wanting to discover or read something similar, I can jump to a book with a similar theme and I get motivated because of that.
Point is, I’ve sometimes helped my slump by not actually trying to read a book. Sounds weird however it’s worked for me!
AM I OUT OF MY SLUMP?
Absolutely not and I probably won’t be for a while. I’ve turned from avid reader to… casual reader
However it’s not all bad, and if this slump has taught me anything it’s that good things can come out of a slump. I’ve found different things to focus on, and new interests have popped up that I wouldn’t have gotten into had I not been in one.
Books don’t work out for a million reasons, but the important thing is to not focus on why they don’t work out. I thought for so long that there was something wrong with me that I kept making my slump worse. I’ll just keep reading at my own pace and see what happens. 🙂
Have you been in a slump before? Did you learn anything from it like me? Let me know, and give me some tips on how you got out of it!
See you next time ❤
P.S. Remember I have a new Twitter account! I’m no longer @bookwormboricua but @bookishboricua on Twitter!
P.P.S. I’m leaving a general reminder that I’m a Sensitivity/Beta Reader! I have a lot of open spaces for the next few months, and if you’d like to help me out some way to pay law school I’d be grateful (more info, here). I also have a ko-fi link in case you want to leave a tip ❤