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Reading Tips: Big Books

Hey guys,

So I have learnt something that has been really working for me over the last month or so and thought that it is about time I shared it with you. For the last 5 years, I have been a read one book at a time person; I find myself feeling guilty when I decide to pick up another book because it means that the original will probably never be completed. But, now I have found a way of pushing myself along while reading more books.

I call them ‘distraction reads’.

It sounds rather silly, but hear me out. I have tackled some huge books on my TBR pile over the last few weeks, and I started applying a distraction reads technique and found I was finishing the other books faster. So here’s how it works.

You start with your main book, for example my current read Red Sister by Mark Lawrence, and you decide a page mark. A page mark is roughly how many pages you want to read before you take a distraction break, usually I pick 100 pages but sometimes (like in some dense high fantasy series, I go for 50 pages purely because of the amount of information you are absorbing on each page). I tend to mark these out using little post-it notes.

You then pick another read, to begin with I chose books that were completely different, like Wintersong with a distraction read of Twilight V1 graphic novel. However, now I have found that any book works well, I currently use Shadow’s Edge by Brent Weeks as a distraction book.

As you are reading, if you ever feel yourself wondering away from the book or too easily distracted from the book; pick up the distraction book and read a chapter or two. When you reach the 100 pages, pick up the distraction book. But then go back to the original book.

I have found that this tends to freshen up my mind and lets me get back to focusing on the book without feeling like I have given up on reading to go do something else. It also stops me from getting distracted, as I used to use Facebook as a distraction and that resulted in hours of mindless scrolling rather than seeing any progress on my reads.

The final step, for me that is, is once you finish the main book, move the distraction book up into the main books place and choose a new distraction. This prevents you from feeling like you are only picking up the distraction book occasionally. It also allows you to continually make progress on TBR piles without thinking you are making minimal progress on a book because you only read a chapter now and then.

I am loving how this system has worked for me over the last month and I plan on continuing it through May.

I hope you have found some of the information here useful, let me know if you try or already use the distraction book techniques for reading big books. Thanks for stopping by guys!

Helen x

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