Posted in Books, Discussions

Tips for How to Read More Books

I am what you might call an avid reader. I tend to read into the 100’s of books per year. This year in particular, I have set myself an extra challenge of reading 150 books in a year (the most I have ever gotten has been 132). I am currently at 92 books for the year…and it is only July. 🤯

So many people ask me how in the world I am able to read so much (seeing as I have a job and a toddler). If you are looking for tips on how to read more often, then this is the list for you. It doesn’t have to be into the 100s, it could be one book a month. Either way, I am here to tell you how you can get more reading into your life.


1: Read everyday.

I know that this seems a bit like a no-brainer. But, it really can be that simple. Some people only read occasionally, and they tend to not read many books throughout the year. If you are wanting to read more in general, then making it a habit by reading everyday will help you immensely.

2: Schedule your reading time into your day.

This kind of goes hand in hand with the last one if reading is not yet part of your daily routine. It can be difficult to figure out when to read everyday if you aren’t used to it yet. Scheduling it into your day can be a good way to make it into a habit. I wouldn’t think this would be something you needed to do forever, just until you have made it part of your daily routine. Although, if you really like scheduling all parts of your day then I say you go for it, you little planner you!

3: Read in multiple formats.

There are some people that consider themselves print book purists, but there are other options out there that will help you to be able to read more. Try out audiobooks and e-books in addition to print. It will revolutionize the way you read, as well as the amount.

4: Always have a book with you.

In conjunction with the last tip, this is really easy if you read e-books or audiobooks. You always have your phone with you, yes? Therefore, you can always have a book with you! There are multiple apps that you can download to your phone for free to listen to audiobooks (including Audible or Libby, plus so many more). You can also download e-reading apps to your phone as well. Kindle has an app so that you can read e-books across multiple devices. Or you can channel Rory Gilmore and tuck a physical book into your purse wherever you go. You do you! 😉

5: Listen to audiobooks.

For the longest time I didn’t listen to audiobooks. I honestly don’t know what exactly was holding me back, but once I started it completely changed the way that I read. I listen to audiobooks all of the time. I listen when I drive, when I’m getting ready in the morning, when I am doing household chores, when I am doing something crafty with my hands, and so on. When I started listening to audiobooks in addition to the physical and digital books I was reading, the amount of books I read each year easily doubled in number.

There are so many amazing audiobooks out there. If you aren’t sure where to start, you can check out my post about some of my favorite audiobooks – Fantastic Audiobooks For You To Read!

6: Use your library.

If you aren’t utilizing your local library, you are seriously missing out. For one thing, most libraries are part of a larger network of libraries which means that they have access to more books than just the ones that are physically present in that branch. You can have a book from a different branch shipped to you, meaning that you have access to an endless amount of books. These books are free – why wouldn’t you take advantage of that?!

Also, you can use the Libby app. This is the library app that allows you to read e-books and audiobooks for free. There are hundreds and hundreds of titles at your disposal. All you have to do is check them out or put them on hold. I use the Libby app on my phone for audiobooks and on my iPad for e-books.

7: Read more than one book at a time.

I always have, at minimum, two books in progress at any given time. Three at the most, one of each format. This way, I always have a book within reach. My audiobook is on my phone, so it is always with me. I tend to bring a physical book with me if I am going to be sitting around somewhere for a while (like one of the many doctor’s visits my daughter has). I bring my iPad with me (where I read my e-books) if I can foresee having a little bit of time on my hands, but I don’t have the space to bring a whole physical book with me. By reading multiple books at once, you will be able to up the number of books you read significantly.

I know a lot of people say that they have a hard time reading more than one book at the same time because they get the storylines mixed up and cannot remember what is happening in which book. The way that I combat this problem is by trying to read different genres in the varying formats. For example, right now my audiobook is historical fiction while my physical book is fantasy. They are vastly different in style and storyline, so the likelihood of me getting them confused is fairly low.

8: Don’t be afraid to DNF a book.

For those that don’t know, DNF means “did not finish.” (If you want to know more bookish lingo, check out my post called Bookish Speak: A Glossary of Terms in the Book World.) I used to be someone who was a compulsive finisher of books. Even if I despised a book, I felt guilty putting it down and not finishing it. I have, in recent years, come to realize that my reading time is valuable and there are far too many great books out there for me to waste my time reading a boring/frustrating/offensive/terrible book. If you hate it, put it down and move on. Your bookshelf of waiting books will thank you.

9: Make a TBR list.

Speaking of your bookshelf of waiting books, making a TBR list (this stands for ‘to be read’, again check out my blog post on Bookish Speak linked in the tip above 😉) is a great way to motivate yourself to want to read more. If you are someone who likes to make a plan, or who likes lists, this tip is for you. Having a TBR list is a great way to take out the guess work of “what should I read next?” You have a list, you can consult it and it will tell you what to read next. Now, don’t feel like you have to stick solely to this list. You can use it as more of a guideline for when you aren’t sure what you want to pick up next.

10: Get on Goodreads.

A great way to discover books to add to your TBR is to make a profile on Goodreads. This website is free, and it is an amazing way to keep track of the books you have read, as well as the books that you want to read. You can connect to it through Facebook if you so choose, and will be able to connect with a bunch of friends right away. By doing so, you will be able to see what other people you know are reading or want to read, thereby giving you access to so many titles you might otherwise not know about. You can also join online book clubs this way and look up new releases, or you can search for ‘books about the 1920s’ or ‘children’s classics’ or whatever your heart desires. If you would like to follow me on Goodreads, you can find my profile here.

11: Join a book club.

I mentioned book clubs in the last tip. This is a great way to get yourself reading more, and potentially even more diversely as well. Book clubs are a perfect place to motivate yourself to read more because you will be surrounded by other people who love to read as well. There are so many ways you can join a book club. There are in person book clubs, which you can easily find at your local library or bookstore. There are also tons of online book clubs. Many bloggers have online book clubs you can join. I also have a book club that meets online. If you are interested, hit me up in the comments 😄

12: Read with a friend.

This is along the same line as the last tip, but on a more personal level. Often reading with a friend can be a great motivator. You will be able to discuss the book at the end, which is always fun. Also, having someone else keeping you accountable can be a powerful motivator as well. If you know that you are going to be meeting up with your friend on Friday at 2 to talk about the book, then you are going to be pushing yourself to finish it rather than deciding that binging The Bachelor sounds like less work 🤣

13: Use a book journal/planner/spreadsheet.

Keeping a log of your reading can be a great way to get yourself to read more. Is there not something so satisfying about checking something off of a list or watching a page fill up with completed books? I love this feeling. For the past few years I have been using the Always Fully Booked planner from Little Inklings Design and it has revolutionized the way that I log my books. I also use a spreadsheet that my friend Taylor curates and creates each year so I can keep a digital log of what I read as well. There are many different ways to log your reading. You just need to find the way that works best for you.

14: Find a book series that you are interested in.

A great way to get your number up is to find a book series you enjoy and read the whole thing. Bonus points if you can find a series that is fairly long. If you would like some ideas for series that I enjoy to get you started, check out my post 8 Book Series That I Love.

15: Read the backlist of an author that you like.

For those that aren’t familiar with this term, an author’s backlist are the books that they have written in the past that are no longer considered ‘new releases’. This is a great way to read more. If you pick up a new book that you enjoy, check out the other books that the author has written. If you are super lucky, you might find an author who is especially prolific and can read dozens and dozens of their older titles.


I really could go on and on, but I’ll stop here. I know I gave you so many tips, but I am hopeful that at least a few will be helpful to you. More than anything else, just have fun! Don’t worry about the number. If you can read even one more book than you read last year, I say that is a win and bravo to you! 🥳

If you decide to try any of these and they work for you, please come and let me know here in the comments! Also, comment down below if you have tried any of these ideas in the past. Did they work for you? What would you suggest to help someone read more? Let’s chat!

Love and happy reading,

Whitney

Author:

Hello!! My name is Whitney, and I love books! I spend a huge amount of time reading (way more time than I should, if we are being perfectly honest!) I am currently working as a library page at a branch of my local public library. I live in Texas with my husband, daughter, and my dogs, who are a total mess and generally are my reading buddies. I also love to sing, hike, play The Sims, watch tons of YouTube videos, and drink creamy tea and coffee.

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