When was the last time you gave yourself a little time to unwind with a good book? A few weeks? Months? Maybe you’re so caught up with the 9 to 5 that it’s been more than just a little while. If it’s been too long, chances are you don’t feel like you have the time (or money) that you used to for your book habit. But you might have more than you than you realize. Transform your reading game with these helpful tips, and read more for less!
Carry Books With You
When it comes to picking up books you can’t put down, travel-size versions of your latest reads are a must. Stuck at the mechanic? Bring a book! Doctor’s appointment? Reading appointment, you mean! Going on a trip this holiday season? Don’t forget to pack a book in your carry-on! E-readers (like a Kindle or Nook) make bringing all of your favorite reads with you wherever you go easier than ever. Every line and waiting room is just another opportunity to get to reading! What will you do with yours?
Read More Than One Book at a Time
A lot of people only read one book at a time. Maybe they don’t want to get distracted. Maybe they don’t want to bite off more than they can chew. But whatever the reason, if you’re only reading one book at a time, you’re missing out! Don’t be afraid to cheat on your books – they won’t be offended. Start a dozen if it means finishing two. Open yourself up to ne genres and writing styles. Giving yourself permission to take breaks from your current book with other books is sure to kick-start your reading habit.
Mark Up Your Books
Someone once told me that respecting your books means never marking them up. That means no dog-eared pages, no circling or underlining, and certainly no writing in the margins. You should always treat a library book with utmost respect and never mark them, but when it comes to your own books, underline, highlight, and margin-write to your heart’s content. But if you are reading a borrowed book, always be considerate and use post-it notes!
Buy Bargain Books
You can get books for pennies on the dollar when they’re second-hand, in-store and in-person, or online. It’s all about where you look! When it comes to finding cheap reads, thrift stores like Goodwill and Salvation Army are your best friends. Thrift stores and yard sales are where old things go to find new life, and that goes double for books. The best part is sites like Ebay and Amazon bring the yard sale to your computer screen.
Use Free Resources
We often forget all the free resources we have at our fingertips, but while those are the easiest to overlook, they’re also the easiest to take advantage of! Borrowing books from your local library doesn’t cost a thing. Nothing quite beats free when it comes to saving money, so leverage your free resources whenever possible.
Listen to Your Books
Reading is awesome, but have you considered giving listening to your books a shot? If you haven’t tried audiobooks yet, it can revolutionize the way you consume literature. Turn your daily commute into your own personal reading session. Pop on a pair of earbuds and engage your mind while you exercise. And this can be even better than reading for those of us who are auditory learners! There are lots of tasks that involve your eyes and hands but don’t give your mind much to do. Hands-free reading can help you take any idle time and turn it into a reading opportunity.
Where to Get Your Audiobook Fix
OverDrive and Hoopla before taking the Audible plunge. They allow you to access the audiobooks your local library has to offer for free right from your smartphone. If you’re a truly voracious bibliophile and just have to get your hands on the newest volume of your favorite series? You can always opt for Audible later or buy it outright. But free and accessible is always nice for the thrifty reader on the go!
Make Reading a Priority
This one is the most important on the list, but it’s much easier said than done. A lot of people find that the busier they are with work, the harder it is to fit reading into their daily lives. But, more often than not, we already have most of what we need to get started. Reading is more of a habit than an act, and we don’t get rid of habits – we only replace them. Chances are there’s a lot of Facebook rabbit holes and Netflix marathons that you disappear into when you do have free time.
Make a Hit List
No, not that kind of hit list! If you want to read more, make a list of all the books you’ve had your eye on and cross them out as you go. It will make reading a goal and may help you prioritize reading on a day-to-day. Give yourself designated reading time, be it audiobooks on your morning drive or some light reading just before you hit the hay. Set time aside specifically to read something and treat yourself every day.
Join a Book Club
If you make time already, why not take the next step and join a book club or host one of your own? Sharing your reads can be really rewarding, and rotating who chooses the next book is great for adding variety to your reading list. Chat with your fellow bookworms. Dish about your current literary obsession or find your next one. The only thing better than enjoying the solitude of a book is getting your fellow readers in on the conversation!