75 Books...More or Less! discussion

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Archive (Intros & General) > Like Hitting a Brick Wall

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message 1: by Karol (new)

Karol Recently, I've had a hard time getting interested in what I'm reading. I read an author that had been on my "To Read" list for awhile, but found myself disappointed. Then, I picked up a newer novel by an author I had previously enjoyed and found that her style and content has changed so much that I'm just plain not interested! More than disappointed, I was actually appalled. After all that, I started reading a novel that had come highly recommended and found that it just wasn't holding my attention. At that point, it felt like I was just hitting a brick wall as far as my reading was concerned.

So, I've turned to a classic to try and get past the feelings of disappointment and disinterest. I've started Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's first Sherlock Holmes novel, "A Study in Scarlet". I've only read some of his short stories before, so sinking my teeth into a novel is a new experience. I must say, it is a pleasant one so far.

I know that writer's block is something even the best of authors have to contend with from time to time. But have you ever had a long dry spell when it comes to reading? What draws you back? How do you regain your interest when that happens?

message 2: by Dawn Michelle (new)

Dawn Michelle | 2725 comments Its actually refreshing to know that there is someone else out there that is going through the same thing I am right now. NOT that I would wish "reader's block" on anyone, at least I know I am not going through it alone!

All the books I want to read are the ones that are currently AT the bookstore. I am getting some on Monday, but until then I have been wandering my bookshelves HOPING to find something to pique my interest. Alas, nothing. EVERYTHING that sounded so good awhile ago, no longer sounds good, OR I am holding off on reading them (one in particular ONLY because its the last one and I do DO NOT want that series to end!!!)so I find that amongst ALL my books, I have nothing to read. I thought my husband was going to pass out when I said that.

I have grabbed a Love, Inspired book (which I consider an easy read) while I contemplate what I am going to read next. SIGH.

But I do know that once my interest comes back, I will be OFF and running.

message 3: by Michelegg (new)

Michelegg (mggoertzen) I have felt the same way recently. Glad to know I'm not the only one.

I've reread favorite books this year, which I've never done before, only because I know I won't be disappointed.

Hang in there! I'm sure the dry spell with be gone quickly. Readers block, who knew?

Don (The Book Guy) (donthelibrarian) Kay, I first ran into this a couple of summers ago. I couldn't sustain interest in anything. I found out eventually for me that I was being drawn back into history. If it wasn't for the 2 book clubs I am in I don't know that I would be reading any fiction right now. I found also mixing up an old favorite or just an older book helped.

message 5: by Merri (new)

Merri Kay- I have been there so many times! Reading is my relaxation so when I have Readers Block it isn't pretty! LOL I usually go to the library and wonder through the aisles picking up books at random! Sometimes it helps if I find a new author.

Good Luck!

ஐ Briansgirl (Book Queen)ஐ (briansgirlkate) When this happens to me, it's usually after I read a book that tanked. Fearful of reaching for another novel only to find out it's bad too, I then sometimes resort to rereading a favorite book or a book by a favorite author as I'm pretty assured most of their stuff is good.

message 7: by Meghanly (new)

Meghanly | 253 comments AHHH - I feel the same way! I clicked into this topic to ask for help for this same problem! The last couple of books I have read have been BIG disappointments (see my thread in 75 books for my reviews). I actually need help in finding something GOOD to read! Help!

message 8: by Karol (new)

Karol Lots of great comments here! I like Don's suggestion of picking up an old favorite, or an older book . . . and Merri's suggestion of trying a new author. I recently picked up Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's "A Study in Scarlet". At the same time (because I tend to have 2 books going at the same time, one for morning and the other for evening) I tried an author that was new to me in genre I don't typically read. Between the 2 books, I'm back into enjoying reading again.

Don (The Book Guy) (donthelibrarian) Giving credit where credit is due, one of my favorite authors, C. S. Lewis said you should read one old book for every new one.

message 10: by Vicki (new)

Vicki I am dealing with something similar right now.. I started several books, but they did not hold my interest I am reading one book at 10 pages a night, its ok, but really its been a few weeks and nothing. I have been steadily reading a book and when I finished one, on to the next. I, too, am in search of something good to read.

I am glad its working out for you Kay though!

message 11: by Andrea, Moderator (new)

Andrea | 4111 comments Mod
This is also one of my dilemmas at times. I do so much reading for school that sometimes the last thing my eyes want to do is read more. I used to muddle though books hoping that eventually I would get sucked it, when I didn't I would just end up in a big ole' reading slump. Now I have learned that if i pick up a book and I'm not "feeling it" I put it back on the shelf and try something different. For this purpose alone I have sever piles of quick easy reads like Janet Evanovich, Robert Parker, Barbara Delinsky and others. They may not stimulate me but they sure are the answer to avoiding a slump and I know I will enjoy what I'm reading.

message 12: by Karol (new)

Karol Great idea, Andrea. I'm kind of out of my slump, yet I picked up another book by a favorite author and couldn't get into it. (Sigh). I'm putting it back on the shelf to read at a later date, and I'll turn to something else in my very large stack . . .

message 13: by Liz (new)

Liz (busy91) Can't say that I've experienced this. Perhaps because I wasn't always a reader and haven't read everything yet, so I tend to find interesting things to read all the time. Classics and newer stuff. It is rare that I find a book that I can't finish. I guess that I am lucky. I also read such a wide range of genre's and authors. I have fav authors but I read maybe something by them once or twice a year. I've found a lot of great reads in my day. I suppose in about 10 years I'll have a serious case of readers block.

message 14: by Stacie (new)

Stacie (stacieh) | 1788 comments Kay wrote: "Recently, I've had a hard time getting interested in what I'm reading. I read an author that had been on my "To Read" list for awhile, but found myself disappointed. Then, I picked up a newer nov..."

This has actually happened to me several times, usually when I'd been assigned some six hundred page monstrosity for some class or other (Tess of the D'Urbervilles, or something equally horrendous), and I've found that revisiting a tried and true favorite rekindles my joy in reading. For me, it's picking up "The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe"- it's the first book I ever read where I saw pictures in my head, and every time I read it it takes me back to being six years old and having that first world-changing realization that books are magic.

message 15: by Karol (new)

Karol Stacie, what a great comment! I am likely much older than you, but I remember "Charlotte's Web" having the same kind of impact on me.

message 16: by Dawn Michelle (new)

Dawn Michelle | 2725 comments Here is an interesting twist to this topic...what do you do when you are reading a HUGE book (500+ pages) and you are over halfway through and you are just DYING because its SO not what you usually read (or ENJOY reading for that matter), but you feel like you are invested now (since you are 1/2way though) and just can't give up. What do you do?

This is where I am now. I am reading "American Gods" by Neil Gaiman and its SO different from the other things I have read by him and its tough going. But now I am over 1/2way and I just feel I have to go on. Even though I am not really enjoying it.

What would you all do?

Lynne - The Book Squirrel (squirrelsend) I was like that when i read it last year. I really didn't like it at all and it has put me off reading any more of his books, although he has been recommended to me. Maybe I will try another one of his later this year.

message 18: by Dawn Michelle (new)

Dawn Michelle | 2725 comments I have read "Coraline" and "Stardust" and just LOVED both of them. This is WAY more "adult" and I guess I just wasn't prepared for that. And the only reason I am reading this one is because I picked up "Anansi Boys" and the clerk told me that I needed to read this one first as there are many of the same characters in "Anansi" as in "American Gods". Sigh. I hope "Anansi" is a better read.

message 19: by Stacie (new)

Stacie (stacieh) | 1788 comments Dawn wrote: "Here is an interesting twist to this topic...what do you do when you are reading a HUGE book (500+ pages) and you are over halfway through and you are just DYING because its SO not what you usually..."

Set it aside for later. Maybe in a year or so you'll look back and find something new in it, something that touches you. And if not, for heaven's sake read something else! There are too many great stories to waste time on ones that don't touch you. Regarding the time you've 'invested'... if you aren't getting anything out of it the time isn't 'invested', it's wasted. Would you rather have wasted the time it took to read 350 pages or 500? My advice is to read because you want to, not because you have to.

Don (The Book Guy) (donthelibrarian) When I was younger I would have plowed throught it since I had started it. Now I would set it aside and try later. There are far too many books I want to read to divert my time into something I'm not enjoying.

message 21: by Dawn Michelle (new)

Dawn Michelle | 2725 comments WOW. Thank you for the advice. I was sure most people would say keep at it. I am amazed at the response of put it away. I am GLAD mind you, but also surprised.

I was actually looking at other books to read last night, so maybe that is a sign. I am going to finish the chapter I am in and see what happens after that. If I can get into another book, I know its time to set that aside.

I always read because I WANT to. I don't feel like I HAVE to finish this. I just hate leaving stories half-finished. Even if I do go back and pick it back up.

˚•—S—•˚ (mille460) Hi Everyone.
Lately I have not been able to get carried away with what I'm reading like I usually do...
Anyone got any tips on how to get interested again?

I am also running out of books I want to read, so if anyone have any recommendations... I like vampires, YA, and real-life-fiction...

message 23: by Penny (new)

Penny Kay, I've been there! The worst times were when I was editing (because I kept critiquing everything I read or couldn't stand to read one more thing) and when I had tiny babies (because I was always sure I would get interrupted and I was out-of-the-loop when it came to bestsellers except for Arthur books). Right now, it's been hard to find the time, too, with homeschooling full time. So, I am doing what I can to create more reading time for myself.

But, if anyone wants a light, funny read, I recommend the Harmony series by Phillip Gulley. Reading the first one gave me a much needed break from my assigned reading!

message 24: by Karol (new)

Karol Penny, I think it would be particularly difficult to enjoy reading if I was in "editor" mode. I do remember reading a couple of books by Dee Henderson - she's a popular author among some, but I just couldn't get past the many obvious errors in the published books!

message 25: by Karol (new)

Karol Helene, I'm not into YA or vampires - but I noticed there are a couple of YA groups on Goodreads that look like they are very active. Perhaps you could check them out?

One is the "YA Book Club" and the other is "Young Adult Fiction for Adults".

message 26: by Jackie (last edited Jun 11, 2009 10:51AM) (new)

Jackie (thenightowl) Helene wrote: "Hi Everyone.
Lately I have not been able to get carried away with what I'm reading like I usually do...
Anyone got any tips on how to get interested again?

I am also running out of books I wan..."

If you like vampires I hear the Sookie series (Dead Until Dark) and Blackdagger series (Dark Lover) are pretty good. They both have romance though with some steamy scenes, so not sure if you're into that.

For YA I'm part of Wild Things: YA Grown Up. They are some wonderful people in the group to talk to and plenty of recommendations. Here is the link:

You can also just poke around in people's reading lists on here. I've found some great finds in a few of these threads.

I also forgot to mention that you can post a recommendation request on TNBBC which I see you're part of. Just tell people what you are interested in and people respond. There are so many people in the group with different tastes you're bound to find something that will interest you.

message 27: by Karol (new)

Karol Jackie,

Great suggestions - thank you!

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