(Insert horror movie score, so you know crap is getting real!) One of the worst things as a reader is the infamous and for some, inevitable, reading slump. I have friends who are very open and honest about experiencing them while on the other hand, I have friends who read basically a book for every day of the year, and don’t experience them at all.
For me as a reader, I don’t really experience them. When I feel a slump coming on it has more to do with the specific book I’m reading rather than I’m just not in the mood to read at all. So here’s what I do and I hope it helps.
- Switch it up. Like I said already, when I feel a ‘slump,’ coming on, it is more the book I’m reading than anything. So I’ll switch it up. Regardless of how far into it I am, I may make the decision to DNF it. Or, I may mark my place where I left off and put it back on my bookshelf with the intentions of coming back to it later. But if it’s bringing on a slump, I’m not going to force myself to finish it and entertain the slump coming on. I want to read and I want to have fun with reading, so I just move on to something else.
- Sometimes, the switch up may come in the form of switching up how I’m reading the book. Maybe I’m into the book but reading it physically just isn’t doing it for me. This happens. I have began listening to certain audiobooks before where I wasn’t the biggest fan of the narrator and not being a fan was bringing on a slump. With one of my now favorite memoirs ever, I experienced this. The author narrated the book herself. I got about five chapters in and hated her voice. I switched from listening to the audiobook to just reading my physical copy and the book ended up being a five star read and I avoided a slump!
- Get excited about reading. When I’m reading a book that’s bringing the slumps on I get myself hype about reading again. Typically, I will get on Youtube and watch some of my favorite booktubers or I’ll listen to either a brand new episode of one of my favorite podcasts or a backlist episode I know I’ve loved. Sometimes I like to step away from reading but listen to someone else talk about what they’re reading. Seems weird, but it makes sense and it works. If this ends up being a spiral I’m down all day, that’s fine. I give myself the time I need and not force it.
- Reread. This one is tough because honestly, I’m not much of a rereader..however comma, a few months ago I felt a slump coming on. I broke out Miracle On 5th Avenue by Sarah Morgan which was a five star read for me the first time I read it and gave it a reread. I loved it just as much this go around as I did the first time, and I was back in my groove again. I think returning to those old favorites can be a big help when whatever you’re reading at the moment just isn’t cutting the mustard (as my Granddad used to say!)
- Lastly, sometimes you just need to treat yourself to a day or so of binging tv. It is insane the amount of paranormal ghost hunting shows I’ve been binging lately. Partly because it’s the fall and fall television is the best, but also because there are days when mentally I’m not in the mood for reading. So I’ll treat myself to a day of lounging on the couch chasing ghosts, watching Hallmark movies, watching Molly Yeh cook in her kitchen or whatever else I have saved on my dvr. It is okay. Once upon a time my brain couldn’t fathom watching tv all day when I had all these books to read but I want reading to be fun. It’s not a job, so taking a break here and there from it works for me. I may not read anything today, then when tomorrow comes..I’ve missed it and am excited about it again.
There are just some of my tidbits on what works for me. I would love to see how you combat reading slumps. Let me know what works for you. If you have had one, what was the longest it lasted?