I simply can’t imagine this - that there are people who cannot read. And I’m not referring to analphabetic people, no - I’m talking about people who can’t find the peace in their bodies and minds to grab a book, find a comfortable chair to sink into, and get lost in a world filled with the fantasies of another person. I wouldn’t want to live without it.
Wandering around bookstores for hours - preferably the cute little ones no-one knows about. Gathering an enormous pile of books you’ve never heard of: creative titles, beautiful covers, inspiring writers - only to realize that - after you’ve put the pile down on the ground because your shoulders can’t handle the weight anymore - your wallet won’t be able to handle the price either. Off to the library you go, and another few hours pass.
Many of my free days are spent like this - mornings in a bookstore, evenings in bed with my new treasure. I hate it when I finish reading a good book and know I won’t be able to re-live the thoughts and feelings I had - no more crying, no more laughing-out-loud just because a few words my brain understands - re-reading a book never is the same: I also hate it when I don’t like a book, read it anyway, and realize I could’ve spent that precious time on a book that would’ve given me the feelings I just described. A lot of ‘hate’, but that hate goes with a lot of love. How is it possible that some people simply cannot feel this?
I don’t know. What I do know, is that you can cure it. Peace is something you have to find and I will help you look for it - peace is something you need to have before you’ll be able to read a book - no, experience a book: because there’s a difference. Don’t be distracted - you have to get lost, learn how to get lost in a book without being able to find your way out before you’ve turned the last page.
Find out what you like
Trying to read a book you don’t necessarily like equals following courses that don’t interest you: the subjects don’t touch you, so you can’t lose yourself in the material. Think about this: what do you like to hear, what do you like to see on TV? Do you like history, love stories - maybe science fiction? Try to find a book that fits into your regular genre of likes, and reading a book - even though it isn’t your favorite activity - will get a lot easier.
Go to a bookshop
Bookshops take me to a magical little world no other shop could ever do - I can see what’s new, what’s old and still loved - what’s in the back and yet to be discovered. Libraries are fun too and I love visiting them as well, but (old) bookshops hold a special place in my heart. It may be that you’re just like me and can’t always afford new, pricy books - but writing down the titles of books you saw in a bookshop and getting them for a small fee in a library is something I’d recommend you to do.
Take your time
The best thing about reading is the feeling it gives you: you’re a completely different person for a few fantastic hours. You do have to take time to do this, though: put on a comfortable outfit (preferably a onesie, hehe), go to a quiet spot where no-one can interrupt you, make a cup of tea, bring your favorite cookies, take a deep breath and allow yourself to be taken to a different universe.
Find others who like reading too
Nothing feels better than to be surrounded by like-minded people. Being able to talk about characters you loved, detested, plot twist you found awful - it’s so much fun and so satisfying as well.
Try something else
You might think you hate poetry, can never get into thrillers, etc.. but maybe you just read the poem or thriller that wasn’t written for you? Try something you didn’t like at first again, and you might find out that you actually do like that genre.
This is not really reading, but.. audiobooks are books, too. Download a few books you don’t have time for but want to read anyway - listen to them while cycling, driving, walking - and you’ll find out that it’s more exciting than just listening to music. It will make you feel productive as well.
Take a book with you
I always carry a book with me - I’m currently reading ‘The Great Gatsby’ and I never leave home without it. (And if I do, I ALWAYS have hours to spare with nothing to do!). Making this a habit will make you read on moments you’d otherwise spend looking at your phone, chatting with friends you’d normally never speak to (hypothetically speaking..) and this is a more productive (and more fun!) of filling up those extra hours.
It’s not obligatory
It’s great that you want to try reading (more) books, but if it’s not for you, it’s just not for you. Reading is great, but some people just prefer movies, series, and just the spoken word in general. Nothing wrong with that! Trying is great, but forcing it will only make it feel mandatory and there’s nothing relaxing about that.
Reading is great and I couldn't live without it. I hope I helped some non-readers out there appreciate their stack of unread books a bit more. <3