What I Read in July, and Why I Failed

What I Read in July
July is officially over, and with that, comes another July wrap up. July was a pathetic reading month for me. It probably was one of the worst reading months I’ve had in years. Before the BookTubeAThon started, I only read 2 books this month. That is unacceptable in my eyes. I think July was just not a good month for me overall, and it really showed in my reading. As of right now, I was able to read 3 books in the past two days because of the readathon, but without that, this month of reading was just laughable.

Here is what I read in July:
1. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey: 3.5/5
2. Monkey Beach by Eden Robinson: 4/5
3. Nostalgia by M. G. Vassanji: 4/5
4. Ariel by Sylvia Plath: 5/5
5. A Room of One’s Own by Virginia Woolf: 5/5

I’m glad I was still able to finish 5 books this month, but the fact I didn’t gravitate towards reading most of the month is sad to me. I can already tell that the readathon is helping me a lot in my reading. I have been behind on my reading goal, and I needed this challenge to refocus on my love of reading. I’m also in a better mood recently, so I’m hoping after such a disastrous reading month, I can have an excellent one in August.

What did you read this month? Let me know in the comments!

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5 Ways to Become a Reader

I may be a complete bookworm, but I know it’s not as natural for everyone else to be. A lot of people want to unwind and read more, but sometimes it’s hard to do. Even with my bookworm tendencies, I can sometimes not feel like reading. So I started to think about what tricks I know of that can help others want to become avid readers like myself. I compiled a list of things you can do that can help you out on this!

1. Read genres you like
I think this may be obvious, but you shouldn’t force yourself to read a genre you don’t like. If you know you love fantasy stories, then you should read fantasy. Forcing yourself to read a genre you have no interest in will just make you want to avoid reading even more. So if you really hate literary fiction, or young adult, don’t read books in that genre. (Now, I know reading outside of your comfort zone is beneficial, but doing so when you don’t read at all doesn’t help you to want to become a reader).

2. Read books that were adapted into movies or television shows
This tip may seem a bit strange, but bare with me. If you have a favourite movie that was adapted from a book, you should read that book. Most of the time, the book is better than the movie, and has tons more information than a short adaptation. Another great thing about reading a book that was adapted into a movie, is that you already know the plot. There will be no worries about if you’ll hate the plot of the novel because you already know what will happen. For example, if you love the movie Pride and Prejudice, reading the novel will be just as entertaining, but the difference here is that you’re actually reading.

3. Read for 20 minutes a day
If you are not a reader, finding the time to read can be bothersome. Some people have incredibly busy lifestyles, and squeezing in hours of reading can be unrealistic. So instead of making a huge commitment to reading a lot everyday, just squeeze in 20 minutes. I would recommend doing this before bed because you’re probably just lying down and looking at your phone anyway. However, if you have 20 minutes during lunch, or even when you wake up, use that small amount of free time to read a book.

4. Read short books
Another thing non-readers may fear are big books. This I completely understand. If you don’t read to begin with, you really shouldn’t be picking up Ulysses or Moby Dick. You need to start off somewhere smaller so that you can actually finish the book, and feel good about finishing it. That good feeling will stick with you, and you’ll want to read another book. I would suggest reading books under 350 pages to start off with. Afterwards, if you feel like you want to take on a larger book, go for it!

5. Read with a friend
I think reading a book with someone can really motivate you to actually read books. I suggest picking a book with a friend, and both of you read the book at the same time. If you’re reading with someone else, you’ll want to finish the book so that you can discuss the it afterwards. Now, I’m not suggesting a book club because not everyone can join one of those, and sometimes book club books aren’t chosen with the whole group’s interests in mind. Book clubs are still a great way to motivate yourself, but it can fall into the category of reading books in genres you don’t like. So, if you and your friend decide to read a non fiction book about black holes, at least you’re picking a book that you agree upon.

I hope these little tricks will help you, or someone you know, in the journey to become a reader. Regardless of how many books you read, or how much time you spent reading them, reading is a great hobby to have.

Have you helped anyone become a reader? Let me know in the comments!

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Bullet Journal: Reading Stats Set-Up

Since having my bullet journal, I have been really interested in tracking my habits, and my mood. After three months of doing this, I thought, why don’t I do this with books? I got inspired by this post on Pinterest, and I decided I wanted to start tracking my reading habits.

I never thought to track my reading, other than how many books I’m reading during the year. But, I thought this would be a great way to see how I read, and what I’m reading. For example, what months in the year do I read most? What genres do I gravitate towards? These questions can be all answered just by tracking my progress in my bullet journal.

I decided when it came to designing these pages, that I wanted to create something simple. I’m just going to use this space to document my findings and keep it at that. I don’t want to clutter these pages with pictures, or other designs. I want to be able to see my stats and really learn from them.

With my reading stats, I’ve decided to track a number of things. I want to see what genre I read the most, where do these authors come from, number of pages read, and how many books I read per month. There’s a lot of things to track, but I really want to see how I progress during the year, and to see what my reading habits are really like. When it comes to pages read per month, I’m simplifying it to only the books I finished that month. I don’t have the time right now to calculate books I half read during months, so if I finish 4.5 books in a month, only 4 books will be listed. (Please ignore the pencil marks and writing, I still need to erase them hahaha).

Let me know if you track your reading habits at all. Have you noticed anything from your reading habits?

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