Reading slumps happen, and they’re terrible. I recently had one at the end of September/beginning of October and it’s really suckish to see all those unread books and just not feel like reading any of them. I literally went from wanting to read all the books to wanting to read none. And unfortunately, it’s a common problem for bookworms.
So I’ve taken some time to collect answers on how to overcome that dreaded reading slump by asking others, reflecting on my own ways of getting over it, and looking at some other blog posts for common answers.
10 Ways to Get Over a Reading Slump
1. Reread an old, comforting favorite
My go-to for when I’m in a reading slump is to pick up a Harry Potter book. I always start with the first and I end up reading to the third book, and by then I’ll be ready for something else. And when the slump hits again, I can continue the HP books without a problem.
2. Use a TBR jar to pick your next book
I have one of these, though I hardly use it unless it comes down to I have no idea what to read. After all, all the books in there are ones I want to read at some point, so why not use this thing?
3. Change up the format
If you usually read ebooks, try a hardcover. Or if you read mainly print then try listening to an audiobook or vice versa.
4. Change your reading space
It’s possible that your designated reading area has become somewhat distracting or is no longer comfortable. Sometimes going to a new place to read – the library, a nice little coffee shop, or outside on a nice day – can really help you focus better on your book. One of my favorite places to read is at the gym while I’m walking on the treadmill or using one of the stationary bikes.
5. Ask for some recommendations
Use those connections on Twitter and Instagram to get some recommendations from your online buddies. Heck, even ask people you know in person for some recommendations or go to your local library and ask the librarians. The best part of working with librarians is learning how different our reading tastes are, but once in a while we all connect over one certain book!
6. Try a different genre
I usually read contemporary novels in the young/new adult group, but sometimes branching out to fantasy or science fiction can help me get excited about reading again. The only reason I tend to have a hard time branching out is because a lot of books in those genres are trilogies/series and I hate starting a series that isn’t complete yet or letting myself get sucked into a wormhole when I do, in fact, have a million books on my own shelf to read (just an estimate).
Or you can even try to read something that isn’t in your usual “group.” If you read a lot of YA, try going up to regular adult fiction or bump it back to middle-grade. Sometimes a different age group of characters can bring you out of that slump.
7. Watch an adaptation
So many books have been made into movies and though it’s common for us bookworms to get upset over the adaptations (when they’re not doing the book justice), watching one might make you want to read/reread that book the movie was taken from. Or if you haven’t read the book yet, it might make you want to read the book afterwards.
8. Try reading something smaller
Maybe instead of a 400 page novel, try picking up one that’s under 200 pages. Maybe read a short story collection or some poetry.
9. Read some fanfiction
This one might not be for everyone, but I find that if I take a break from reading books and dive into the world of fanfiction for a while, it gives me a recharge when it comes to reading slumps. It’s still reading, so it’s not really taking a break-break, but it’s going into worlds you already know and love and seeing favorite characters put into different situations, either in alternate realities, what-ifs, or after the original stories have been completed.
10. Take a break from reading all together
It’s not the end of the world if you decide to take some time off from reading. The books will still be there for you when you get back, but in the meantime, maybe try spending your time learning a new skill or just take a break all around and binge a new series or play some video games. I find that after a couple episodes of a new show I’m watching, or a few hours of playing Sims 3, that I have the urge to read again.
I hope some of these will help if you happen to be in a slump or if a slump hits you. Are any of these your usual tactics for beating the slump? What are some other ways that usually help you?