How to Make Time for Reading In the New Year

Puppy or Potter? How ever will I chose?
My family recently adopted a Yorkie-mix puppy, one who likes to play and cuddle and pee on our hardwood floors. We all knew that an addition to the family would be a big responsibility and require great commitment, but I never expected to feel like a teen mom. Since we rescued him two weeks ago, I have only left my house three times for no more than a couple of hours. Not only that, but this is my winter break; I was supposed to get through the entirety of the Harry Potter series, just for the heck of it! So far I've gotten through Sorcerer's Stone and about twenty-eight pages of Chamber of Secrets. With book series like J.K. Rowling's, I almost always throw myself into them and binge-read a book a day. But being a teen (dog) mom means that I'm awake from seven to midnight every day, trying to keep another living creature, well, living.

For us book-obsessed folk, having something compromise our reading time is like making us pick only one favorite book: it's pretty cruel and sucks the life out of us. What with the new year creeping up on me, I felt an appropriate "first post" was to lay out my book-related resolution - to make more time for reading. Here's how you might be able to do the same:

1. Bedtime Stories 

Reading before bedtime was always a calming activity when we're little, so I wonder why we ever grow out of it. In an attempt to revive this ancient practice, I suggest going to go to bed (ideally) an hour earlier than normal - this will be the window for bedtime stories. Even if you don't finish a whole novel during this time period, at least you're making a dent in it.

2. Carry a Book Around 

To be "book-bosomed" is to carry a book with you at all times. This is something I've been trying to do for a while and although I haven't been very consistent, I noticed that I was usually able to find a few minutes to read during any outing. Always keep a magazine, newspaper, or other easy read in your bag, even in your car's glove compartment. If you always have material, you'll feel more compelled to read.

3. Read the Book a Favorite Movie/Show Is Based On 

Movie are super entertaining, especially those that were based on books. If you're interesting in Gossip Girl for instance, try reading the Gossip Girl novels! You already know that you find the basis of the show or movie intriguing, so why would the books be any different? And if you're worried that you know the entire plot from watching the adaptation, don't be so sure. Screenwriters don't stay as true to a novel as you might think and there could be some surprises in store.

4. Book Clubbing

A few friends and I recently started a Harry Potter book club, Bookies and Cookies. Being a part of a book club where you get to set up a schedule that works with each of your lives is super beneficial in getting you to really want to read. Not only that, but you'll look forward to club meetings if you plan them out well enough. My book club meets at our favorite cafes, brings up questions we have about the reading, and we're currently planning a Sorcerer's Stone movie night complete with butterbeer and DIY wands. Who needs dancing and booze when there's a pile of unread books lying around your house?

5. Schedule Reading Time

If you need more structure, set aside one whole day for reading. Think of it as a mental health day. Life is stressful, so schedule time to just lounge around with your nose in a good book - or a crappy book, whatever floats your boat.

Now you and I both have a list of ways to complete at least one New Year's resolution, no excuses!

Sincerely, Kenya


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