Are We Reading too Fast?

I was asked to moderate the agents and editors panel at the Alaska SCBWI/AWG conference last weekend, and the one question I WISH I’d had time to get to is this:

With how our society devours something and moves on to the next, will we see a lack of new “evergreen” novels? Novels that stick around year after year?

My guess is that we will.

Even I fall into that same trap of devouring and then moving on.

Read more! Better! Faster! Move onto the next! Now! Now! Now!

So far this year I’ve probably read half as many books as I read last year. BUT I can tell you more about the books I’ve read. I’ve gone back and re-read some favorites. MORE SLOWLY. I hate to think that I might not love a book simply because I’m thinking about which book I’ll read next. How they’ll compare.

(I hate that comparison thing, but that’s a whole different post)

I think what I’m trying to say is that I WANT to slow down… I want to read more slowly. I want to take my time with the story and the words and how much WORK that author put into every sentence (because now I know how much work that author put into every sentence).

But I am sad to know that maybe a higher percentage of really great books isn’t going to become the evergreens that might have been able to be 10 years ago, or even 5.

My consolation is that even with this notion that we might have fewer readers out there, paperback and hardback sales are still going up, not as fast as ebooks, but going up, and of course ebooks sales are still on a massive upswing.

(On a side-note, I just read an article about how the number of readers is going up again. My guess is we can thank hollywood for turning awesome books into awesome movies and we can thank ereaders and smartphones)

The point of my post?

I’m not sure. Maybe that I’m afraid I’ll miss out on even more amazing books because people are reading too fast to be excited over individual reads?

Slow down?

Enjoy?

Really take the time on the next book you read?

Or you can tell me what my post was about, because I think for almost every post I write, someone says it better in the comments 😉

~ Jo

4 thoughts on “Are We Reading too Fast?

      1. I don’t read fast because I’m excited to get onto the next story, but more so because it’s so good. But I probably miss out on things because of that fast reading. Especially when it’s one a.m. and I’m so tired, but I just have to finish one more chapter. And then another…

        I should slow down and enjoy it because I’m not one who goes back and re-reads stuff.

        🙂

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