Learning to read again

I know how to read except that I don’t read anymore… I can read stuff in my daily life, like press news, blog posts or technical documentations but I can’t read a book. It can sound weird but I’ve not been able to read a complete book for a maybe more than ten years now and everytime I tried in the past, I gave up pretty quickly.

What’s the problem ?

I was an avid reader when I was younger, I could read multiple books in a month and it was rare that I had no book to read. When I entered high school I was forced to read books that I had no interest in, and maybe that was beginning of the end. After when I was student, I completely stopped reading because I had less time to read and it’s at this time that I completely lost interest in reading and this led to my situation today. Recently no matter what book I choosed, I didn’t read it entirely.

So I don’t really know what’s the problem but I have some ideas :

That may not be only that, but it’s some of the things that came to my mind while I was writing this…

Reading a whole book

My plan is simple, I want to read at least one book by the end of the year. I know it’s a really small objective but I want to be sure to reach it before taking bigger ones. So I picked a book, that I’ve never read before, that I think would enjoy reading, that don’t have too many page, that have a sequel because it might give me the motivation to read another book once this one is finished…

The cover of The Three Musketeers

I choose «The Three Musketeers» by Alexandre Dumas, it’s a 300 pages book, it’s not the complete version but a «short version» with a lot of chapters and it matches my previous requirements. I had an extra reason to choose this book : My daughter studied it at school and we could discuss about it later.

Some advices

These are just some advices based on what work for me, they may not work for you but maybe it’ll give your directions on finding what motivate you !

First, start by creating a routine. Every night before going to bed try to read one chapter. There are nights where I can read multiple chapters and some where I don’t feel like reading. I don’t want to put too much pressure on this so if I open the book and I can’t finish my chapter, no big deal, I close the book and that’s it.

If there is someone reading at home, sit next to him and open your book, you’ll see it’s motivating and if you are several to read at the same time, you’ll read more pages than on your own.

Choose a book that speak to you and if possible to your family entourage. Discussing about the book you read may help you get motivated to know the end of it.

And finally, don’t fool your self thinking that you’ll be able to read a Tolkien series even if you are really in fantasy stuff, that goal will be really hard to reach. Take baby steps, start with small books and enlarge the size of the book you read when you’ll have finish your first books.

Conclusion

To be honest, I’m not cured as it happens frequently that I don’t read a chapter every evening. But I see improvements, the number of page left to read reduce slowly but I don’t let the book settle more than 3 days. I still have more then a hundred pages to read but I want to know the end of the book. Another nice thing : I’m more inclined to sit next to my wife when she’s reading, something that I would not have done previously.

Another nice thing it that I use less my phone before going to bed, I choose my book maybe 2 days out of 3, which is good for my sleep even if I don’t see any changes.

When I’ll finish «The Three Musketeers», I’ll probably read «Twenty years later» which is the sequel, adn after that I’d like to read «Uncle Tom’s Cabin» by Harriet Beecher Stowe.