≡ Menu

A Year of Slow Reading

If you put a plate of chocolate chip cookies in front of me, there’s a strong possibility that I’ll eat all the cookies. I read books in a similar fashion; very quickly. Life is short, and there are hundreds of books I want to read, and there are so many cookies to eat!

This year, I’m changing my reading routine. Instead of trying to read all the books, I want to read slowly. Hopefully, I’ll retain and remember more of the articles and books that I read.

Here’s what my year of reading slowly will include:

  • Taking detailed reading notes
  • Sharing inspiring quotes and links on the blog
  • Talking about the books I’ve read with friends and Logan (this helps me remember information)
  • Rereading books

Last week, I started rereading A Writer’s Paris by Eric Maisel, and I’m uncovering nuggets of wisdom I missed the first time around.

For example, Maisel said:

“Taking the bad with the good is a principle that writers need to learn. The victims of endless advertising, we have been brainwashed into fully misunderstanding basic ideas like good and bad. As one example of this malady, we are taught to expect only the best, What does only the best mean? It means that we feel we are entitled to something like perfection in our goods and services, that it is unseemly to talk about the failures and mistakes that were part of the process, and that things get our stamp of approval based almost entirely on how they appear.”

Maisel goes on to say:

“In order to create, you must take the bad with the good. You are bound to write many bad paragraphs along with the good ones. That is the eternal law. You can get rid of those bad paragraphs later, but first you must write them. Otherwise, you won’t write anything. If you try to write only the good paragraphs, you will paralyze yourself. You will fall victim to perfectionism, even if you aren’t consciously trying to be perfect. Understand that the good requires the bad, that getting to the good is a process that includes mistakes and messes.”

Maisel’s reminders came at the perfect time because I’m trying to let go of my inner perfectionist; especially when it comes to writing. I’m happy that I decided to read this little book again!

Cheers to a year of reading deeply and slowly!

With gratitude,

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Saskia February 13, 2018, 8:16 am

    Thanks. That’s something that resonates with me, too. Maisel expressed that idea so clearly. Great reminder!

    • Tammy Strobel February 13, 2018, 11:10 am

      Awesome! I’m glad you enjoyed it. 🙂

  • Sarah February 13, 2018, 9:00 am

    tammy! i’m in love with the slow reading idea! what is your strategy for taking notes?

    • Tammy Strobel February 13, 2018, 11:09 am

      Hi Sarah, thanks! I just shared a post about my note taking system with my patrons. In short, I’m using Evernote to capture most of my reading notes. I love writing quotes down but it takes forever and my handwriting is messy! Plus, Evernote is searchable which makes my life much easier. 🙂

  • Trisha Traughber February 14, 2018, 9:26 am

    I love so many things about this post. Embracing slow reading is a wonderful thing…and now I feel like I have to read A Writer’s Paris. What fabulous quotes.

    • Tammy Strobel February 14, 2018, 1:03 pm

      Thank you Trisha! It’s a great book. 🙂

  • Crystal Jean Wiley February 18, 2018, 2:16 pm

    SUCH a great post. Thanks for sharing. I’m addicted to books and try to fly through them so I can get to all of them. Great reminders to let them soak in, otherwise, what’s the point? With Love.