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Reignhart

I try to read novels but...

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Posted (edited)

Back when I was really little I was slower than my peers in school when it came to learning how to read and would much rather watch TV or play computer games. I only took books out of the library for the colourful pictures and I don't remember actually reading them. I think this was made worse by the fact that my dad noticed this and forced me to read. He'd then question me afterwards so he knew I wasn't just pretending.
Even today I almost never read for pleasure and I don't really understand why some people like books so much (other than for learning purposes of course) when there's so many other forms of entertainment.

For the record I don't have dyslexia, but I probably have mild ADHD.

 

Anyone else have a similar experience?

Edited by Reignhart

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When I consider most other forums of "entertainment" - particularly on line gaming, concerts with screaming fans and desperately expensive theatres, books become even more appealing :)

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See, what's funny is that I'm like you now, whereas I wasn't when I was a kid. There wasn't a book I could put down. Had the attention span of a zen master. Nowadays, total opposite. No patience for consuming entertainment anymore from any medium, unless it's something I really, really like. I think the reason why is that I discovered I'm a pretty good writer, and it went to my head. I became a total art snob, and now I surround myself with all the fanfics and novels I've written, and lost most of my taste for other people's work. It's probably very unhealthy, but I like it. On the bright side, while this mindset has shoved a huge stick up my ass, it removed another: I used to be one of those annoying idiots that cared about canon to the point where I would scoff at the derivative works of my fellow fans. Not anymore, I'm happy to say. I think it stemmed from my being fed up with canon stories, which are all being distributed by corporations that only care about making money and being as formulaic as possible. Animation is just about the only visual art form that cares about telling a story properly anymore - besides theater, anyway.

 

Tl;dr I found that for me personally, it's way more fun to write than to read. Seriously. My college drama club wants me to write plays for them now. You can create and wrap yourself in an entire universe that belongs only to you. It's pretty hard to get bored doing that.

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On 5/12/2020 at 1:19 AM, Reignhart said:

I think this was made worse by the fact that my dad noticed this and forced me to read. He'd then question me afterwards so he knew I wasn't just pretending.

Woah, that sounds awful. After reading that I can sympathize if you don't get why people read for fun and entertainment. Something like that turns reading into mindless homework. Sounds like it's now more of a utility skill for you.

 

I'm kind of in the same basket as Sesshomaru. Did a ton of reading back as a kid in late elementary school through high school and the library was my favorite place to chill. But now, I can't recall the last chapter book I read through. I just don't devote as much free time to it anymore as an adult. Comics and short poetry's really all I read for fun now.

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Posted (edited)

I was one of those kids that was always reading a book when I could get my hands on them. I would go through them so fast. I have tried to slow down so they last longer but I don't have the patience to slow it down. In school I would grow frustrated at others pace. While everyone was still the reading the same story I'd finished multiple stories and they still weren't even close to done. I'm glad my teacher never called on me to read from wherever the class was at I would have been lost to figure out where they were since I'd stopped paying attention.

Also i read my books multiple times. For me when my mom wanted to punish me she would take away my books. I still love reading but my fatigue makes it hard sometimes.I find myself trying to read the same words over And over but not really absorbing them.

 

The thing with reading is if you look at it like a chore than that's what it will be to you. Try to find something you enjoy. Don't push yourself to read more than your attention will allow. Don't judge yourself for whatever pace you read at. Some people read a chapter a night or even just a few pages. Take the pressure off of yourself when you read and try to read when your mind is more in tune with what you will be doing, it should help some.

 

I wanted to be a writer too but while I am good at it, I find that I enjoy reading other people's stories more.

Edited by AngelsSin

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About enjoying it - YES. And don't feel you MUST finish a book you hate. (I had one for book club not long ago. I read the first 50 pages several times, as- like - BOOK CLUB, got to make the effort -  but I just couldn't face the rest... I did TRY....) A famous author - I think it may have been McEwan, but I'm not sure - said  (paraphrased from memory) "If you don't like my book, for god's sake don't finish it. You will have a bad experience, and probably never read anything else of mine, and it may mean you won't be reading something else by someone else that you would have enjoyed, and instead you will waste your time reading something that gives you no pleasure, which will make reading in general feel less appealing."

 

Not everyone is ever going to like every book. My partner and I disagree enormously over - we don't agree over very many actually ! But we both read voraciously.

 

Nice article:

 

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/nov/30/the-joy-of-not-finishing-books-if-you-dont-like-it-dont-read-it

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If you want to read, look for books you will enjoy.

 

I have been a voracious reader all my life. With no other reading material I would read product labels.

 

My son never enjoyed reading - but I bought a number of MAD magazines and similar and he read for several hours . He read the entire Narnia series and even read Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky - NOT an easy read, but something he wanted to read.

 

Find books that interest you. Don't give yourself goals or deadlines. Don't read things you don't enjoy. Just relax. You may surprise yourself by having a good time with a book.

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Posted (edited)

@Daydreamer09 Yeah. 🙃 And it's not like I never read, it just feels like a choir to have to picture everything in my head and my reading speed isn't great either. I greatly prefer reading webcomics when I do read for fun.

 

@Fuzzbucket I definitely don't force myself, but it's still seemingly difficult for me to even start reading something that does peak my interest. The only series I've ever become invested in is City of Ember, and even then I find my interest has waned quite a bit with the second and third book. I'm actually kind of surprised I even read three of the four.  ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Edited by Reignhart

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Posted (edited)

A little history from me, I absolutely love reading. Still do to this day, but the time for reading a book is significantly shorter than a year ago. When I was in elementary school, I prided in how fast I could read in and out of my head. Like Sessho, I was all about the canon. If something was set as canon, I'd try to make it fit in the world they created if they don't give an explanation. I used to read books many kids my age at the time wouldn't want to read, like a whole nonfiction book about earthquakes, history of them, the science of them, and the history of the machine that senses the moving tectonic plates. I also read a lot of books with statistics and charts (like that of the Pokemon Pokedex books. Though, I find their errors annoying, like a Water/Electric fish Pokemon getting moves that a land Grass starter Pokemon learned).

 

Now, after I had my child, it's harder to read something through to the end. My anxiety of "oh, my baby needs me" distracts me from reading too quickly and I don't have the patience anymore to read, and I also can't retain the information I have read like I used to (oddly enough, I have the patience to try a Professor Oak Challenge in Pokemon Platinum and Pokemon White). 

 

My husband is similar where you are coming from, Reignhart, but he has dyslexia. He can read comic books and read for a short time, but after a while the words start to jumble. He can't read novels or books with any enjoyment because he has to read pretty slow for his brain to process past the dyslexia. I still love reading and I would often find myself reading things out loud to him. He loves my voice, so I'm glad I have an audience. XD

 

As for canon stuff, I am starting to write my own stories (albeit very slowly since I hardly have the time anymore) and I am beginning to twist worlds around to fit my headcanon and their canon. I don't particularly enjoy the works of others unless they are actually really good, but I also have a writing style with many errors grammatically (for all I care, grammar can die -_-).

 

So there's that. I tend to find books that I believe I won't like and then I read them to prove myself wrong. Like Life Happens - Live It by Jake French. Thought I wasn't going to like it when I first got it from an assembly when the author came by to speak to the middle schoolers about not giving up and looking at your plight in a different perspective, no matter how bleak your situation is. I stashed it somewhere, as autobiographies and biographies were not my thing to read when I was 12. Still, I kept it for when I may read it and that day happened a week ago. I saw it and I was genuinely curious about it, especially since I had to move away from my house and town of 13 years since I was 8. I felt kind of stuck in my life and found it inspirational. Since then, I have been looking at my life in a different, much happier life and my husband and I are currently turning our life around, even during this pandemic.

 

Reignhart, I understand where you are coming from, despite our differences in our opinions of books. My husband is similar (but that's also due to dyslexia) and finds reading things unenjoyable and a chore. Maybe comics are your thing?

 

And I'm sorry about what had happened when you were little. I wish he had helped nurture the love of books into your life and not try to do it in a more harsh way that led you to hate it to this day (assuming that is what happened, as that is common). I would have a different opinion of Magic: The Gathering if my ex didn't brutally beat me at the game when I had a horrible deck when I was still dating him. I may have actually liked it.

 

At least there are multiple mediums of entertainment widely available. :D

Edited by Merciless_Medic

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I used to hate to read, but now I love it. The thing about it is that you have to think about it being fun, and not a chore or boring. It also helps if you read books that are well written.

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@Merciless_Medic  I was fascinated by plate tectonics in elementary school, too. Science classes were boring until I had a great teacher in 7th/8th grade. 

 

@Reignhart  Please pardon me for asking, but how what is your history of eye exams? Sometimes corrective lenses will help. I had no idea that I was near-sighted until 3rd grade, even though we had good doctors. What genres of fiction have you tried? 

 

I love reading, for work/class/pleasure, and hope that others do, also. :)

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If you prefer watching movies to reading books consider this - typically it takes more than 6 hours to read a book. Most movies are 1 1/2 - 2 hours long. This means that movies have to leave a lot of stuff out. If you really enjoy a movie made from a book, try reading some of the book to see some of what you have missed. Enjoy whatever entertainment you like, just be aware you may be missing some good stuff.

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I used to be similar, and would absolutely hate reading. When I had to do reading logs in elementary school, I would turn to a random page in the book and write that I read that far, and only use books I had already read for answering questions on it. I got back into reading with stuff like Animorphs and Warrior Cats, and now I adore it, and reading is literally most of what I do all day. Something else that got me back into reading was fanfiction, which isn't the best written, but because it was for fandoms I liked, I got really into it, causing me to get back into reading myself.

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I have dyslexia but I love to read. Even though it was hard for me as a kid and still difficult as an adult I still love my books.

 

My parents never forced me to read; however I tend to read non-fiction. My reading teacher scolded me; I think in the 3rd grade, because I never took out any fiction books. She forced me to take out a picture book of Black Beauty, and I did enjoy it... but went back to my non-fiction the next week.

 

As an adult I still tend to collect non-fiction books with lots of reference pictures, which is becoming more common in adult books now. There are very few fiction novels that I'll read, (Never read Harry Potter, or Twilight)… I do sometimes go into the children's section, and look at the picture books mostly to see the artistic styles of the illistrators. 

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Posted (edited)

Not really sure if my story can help in any way, but I think I'm allowed to post it here.

 

I've never had any serious difficulties with the reading. I was that kind of a child who always isolates in their room with a book or two. Maybe the reason is I'm highly introverted and I literally hate loud noises and small talk. I could read almost freely by the time I went to the 1st year of the primary school. Me and my classmates were regularly tested for our reading speed, and I was always on top of the list. I was reading so quickly, the teacher always tried to convince me I don't understand any word from what I've just read, which always revealed as untrue, since I could answer all the questions about the text.

 

I also was always ahead of the rest of my class at the reading lessons (the most common exercise was reading aloud) and got bad marks several times when I had no idea where they have stopped at, 'cuz I was so far away from them at that point. I was very glad when we finally went to the middle school and this kind of torture has ended. But then I met another kind or problem - I still have very bad relations with the classic literature. It was the only kind of books I have ever read as a choir.

 

As for the other parts of literature, I spent all of my pocket money buying different fantasy books and read them in one night. I was always short of things I really wanted to read, so I had to read the same books over and over. It's not like it's any kind of a problem for me, but sometimes I think that I learnt them by heart. As an adult I see that my reading speed mostly depends on my mild ADHD, since my primary reading style is definitely skimming (I skip a lot of words and only slowing down for the most interesting parts), and I sometimes had to go back to a previous paragraph, etc. But I don't need all the possible information from the text to enjoy it. I'm a kind of intuitive person, so I get everything by a brief look. I also have a case of aphantasia (my mental imagery is very blurred), so I mostly think with words and savour them.

 

Actually, I have an opposite problem! I hate reading comics (the only thing I like is modern comedy strips) and can't watch media with subtitles, 'cuz I cling onto words and ignore all of the images and visuals, so I prefer either plain texts or voiced visuals. As for my current reading problems, I either can't find any valuable reading material or suffer from depression and anxiety, and both of this things are cutting out all of the joy from the process of reading. And to finish my testimony, I'm also a grammar-nazi, so it's impossible for me to read any kind of fanfiction, and I read all of my books (forgot to say I can't read off any screens) with a pencil in my hand to fix all the mistakes I can find :'D

Edited by BreRo

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Posted (edited)

Like some others in this thread, as a kid I *loved* to read. I'd literally sneak away from family gatherings to read in an empty room. I still own (or have re-acquired) favorite books from my childhood. My love for reading went up and down as I got older, especially in middle school when all the 'required reading' was totally bland (some classics just honestly aren't fun to read!). Reading, to me, is an escape from the world, a chance to see a completely different view on something, to see normal concepts/situations in a completely new way, a book can even sometimes start me thinking on interesting things I'd never thought about before (the possibility of parallel universe, for example). 

 

That said, I haven't read more than two full books in the past two years. My love for stories and such is still there, but I've lost a lot of patience for it I guess. And my life situations don't exactly help with that. Reading fiction stories is still something I enjoy, it's just usually online and shorter than an actual book. 

 

OP, I'm so very sorry (and frustrated) that your dad acted that way about your reading. I've had enough experience with kids to know that nagging/pushing/forcing/yelling/quizing/etc will accomplish pretty much the exact opposite of what is wanted. A lifelong love of reading often starts as a fairly young kid, but it has to happen naturally. Children need to be free to explore different genres, to decide for themselves what they enjoy reading, and to decide for themselves if reading is important to them. It sometimes helps for someone to gently offer ideas for books to read and such, but parents making reading into a strict requirement will naturally make a reluctant reader view it as a bad/unpleasant thing that they just have to get through.

 

As far as other forms of entertainment, I love music and listen to favorite songs constantly. I watch movies sometimes, not as much as I used to because my visual media preferences have shifted to educational videos on YouTube (that parallel universe idea...). I'm online entirely too often, usually on DC. But to me reading is still superior in many cases, I love pausing and closing my eyes for a moment to picture what I'm reading, both simple settings like a house and more action-y moments like a battle. I have a vivid imagination and I love the whole idea of reading something, just letters on a page, and kind of bringing it to life in my own head. 

Edited by HeatherMarie

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I'm with the people who used to read a ton as a kid but now have trouble focusing on most books.

 

In my situation, I kept trying to read "hard" books, long ones with complicated words and everything just because I was older and "needed to". After doing that for a bit I just got tired and decided I wasn't into reading. But man, now? I've just gone back to reading stuff that's on the same level as Warrior Cats. Also, comics/manga are great for readers with bad focus! The pictures help engage me with what I'm reading and the shorter sentences keep me from getting bogged down with words. Plus, middle school books just seem to be cooler. I recently read through the Silverwing series, which is similar to Warriors but with bats instead. It's got an absolute insane escalation of events with these bat characters trying to figure out why humans are putting metal bands on them, and then in the third book they're straight up venturing into bat hell and fighting giant bat satan. Where the hell am I gonna get plots like that in adult books?? 

 

Contrast that with The Namesake, a book I had to read for school, that had the most boring insufferable characters imaginable. It's about this Indian immigrant family moving to the US and their kids dealing with not quite being part of Indian or American culture. Which would've sounded interesting, if there wasn't the most gloomy annoying protagonist on Earth. It felt like all he did was complain and have relationship drama. His wife cheats on him at the end of the book and you're supposed to feel sorry but they're honestly both so unenjoyable you feel nothing. The whole class hated the book... (I'm sure they're not all like this, but it kinda turns me off from picking up another book for older audiences).

I digress though. Animal drama books and silly shonen manga >>>>>>>>> whatever adult drama is these days.

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Posted (edited)

I have been enjoying all the books of Odette C Bell. She writes ebooks in the genres of Scifi/Fantasy. There literally isn't anything of hers I didn't like even those I wasn't as interested in. I really really love her Space Opera books. Her stories catch my attention from the very beginning and never lets it go. The worlds she builds are fascinating, intriguing characters that you want to know more about, by the time I get to the end I'm cursing that it's done and looking for the next. I devour her books. Plus you can find the first book in each series for free they aren't as long as a typical book but they are so good! IMO, everything she writes is gold!!!!!!

Edited by AngelsSin

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Posted (edited)

For anyone else interested/curious about Nostradamus and his prophecies. I'd recommend reading "The Man who saw tomorrow, the prophecies of Nostradamus, history's greatest psychic" Translated and edited by Erika Cheetham. While I don't think it is a perfect interpretation of his prophecies I don't feel any version is 100% accurate and this is the version I always go back to after I've read other versions. I suggest you don't skip the intro as it has lots of info I feel is pertinent to understand him as a person and his prophecies. If you don't know anything about him here are some thing I feel you should know. Nostradamus was a highly educated man. He was born a Jew but his family was converted as a child. Some would say he was a scholar and he was also a doctor. He used his skills as a doctor during a plague. He was persecuted by the church for his beliefs and his prophecies suppressed.  Anything else you can read in the book listed or if you want to read more than one version I suggest not reading anything from before 2000. A lot of those after 2001 can get a bit loo-loo.

Edited by AngelsSin

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I'm like quite a few people in here in that I loved to read as a kid, but hardly do anymore. There's a lot of reasons why.

 

First of all, I didn't have much else to do as a kid. We didn't have TV because according to my parents "teh liberals" would rot my brain, and videogames would apparently turn me into a psycho killer. I was homeschooled, too, and we were very rural, so there weren't other kids for me to play with aside from my much-younger siblings. I could...basically read or do extra chores just to not be sitting staring at a blank wall. So of course I read like a fiend. Most of the things I read I had to keep secret from my parents because they weren't overtly Christian analogies, and having to keep them secret kinda made it more fun. It was one of the only ways I could (relatively) safely rebel. So between sheer boredom and the thrill of having a secret I had to get back to the library as fast as possible, I'd tear through a 350+ brick in two or three days, easily.

 

Record scratch. Then, long story short adulthood happened. The world both opened up and massively sucks in ways I was never prepared for. I had the opportunity to play videogames and watch movies and ohhhh boy Netflix, Youtube, Twitch, you get the idea. My very-ADHD and possibly also Autistic brain went hog wild. So with my very limited free time now flooded with all of these much more sensory-engaging options, I can't pay attention to read. And oh my gods, the massive amounts of reading-things-I-didn't-want-to to get my BA pretty much made reading for fun seem like insanity anymore. And now I'm trying to get back into a post-grad program where I'll have to read more things I don't want to?

 

Yikes.

 

But I still read and write for RP like I have since I learned what the Internet was.

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