Ultimate Popsugar Reading Challenge discussion

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2018 Challenge - General > Reading Rut

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message 1: by Mellanie (new)

Mellanie Gould | 44 comments Hi everyone. I have found myself in a reading rut lately and I really do like what I am reading. I am wondering if others have gotten into a reading rut? If so, how did you get yourself out of it? I am hoping to get out of this rut soon as I am already 3 books behind (I am currently halfway done with 2 books) and if it continues much longer I don't see how I will be able to complete the challenge. Any help would be great. Thank you.


message 2: by Julie (new)

Julie | 172 comments I was in a reading rut for awhile during last year's challenge - took me 3 months to finish one book, even though I really was enjoying the book. I've been fighting smaller reading ruts this year throughout the challenge too.

For me, though, it's not enough to just "like" what I'm reading if I'm in a rut. So first, I usually go through my list and see if I can figure out whether I have any serious, gripping page-turners (the kind that make you stay up late reading, make you want to call in to work because you just need to know what happens next) on my list. I've actually changed books on my challenge list this year to include more of these so I can get out of reading ruts. If I don't know what's going to work, though, then I'll take out a whole stack from the library and read a couple of chapters of each to figure out which one really "hooks" me.

The other thing I've done is switch to graphic novels when I'm in a rut. I think I've filled at least 3 prompts with graphic novels this year. They're quick to get through, so you get to easily pick up your reading pace without as much effort, and the graphics for me are a nice break when I'm just not feeling a lot of dense text.

My last suggestion would be maybe try to switch to audiobooks. This has helped me too. I can listen to audiobooks while I'm doing other things - driving, cooking, household chores, sometimes even working, so it allows me to "read" without actually sitting down with a book. In fact, I usually have an audiobook as well as a physical book going. That can also speed up the pace of the challenge if you're worried you won't have time to finish.


message 3: by Ian (new)

Ian (iansreads) Mellanie wrote: "Hi everyone. I have found myself in a reading rut lately and I really do like what I am reading. I am wondering if others have gotten into a reading rut? If so, how did you get yourself out of it? ..."

I had this problem while reading The Female Persuasion. I picked up a smaller book (Lord of the Flies) to have a quick breezy read - that way you feel like you've accomplished something.


message 4: by Johanne (last edited May 06, 2018 10:49AM) (new)

Johanne *the biblionaut* | 1301 comments Mellanie wrote: "Hi everyone. I have found myself in a reading rut lately and I really do like what I am reading. I am wondering if others have gotten into a reading rut? If so, how did you get yourself out of it? ..."

So, as a non-English-as-my-first-language-speaker, is it the same as getting stuck in a book?
If it is, I suggest you try reading something completely different, something lighter preferably. Then you can either finish a short, "easy" read (fx a graphic novel, children´s book, pageturner), or alternate between the books, i.e. read a chapter or two in the "stuck" book and then the easier read. I say "easier" read, because this sometimes happens to me if I read something that´s heavy, either language/ storywise, or topic-wise. As an example, I had to read really light reads after my book about death and grief, and also alternated between books while reading it. This meant it took longer to read, but I didn´t have to force myself to read it, when it became too much emotionally (it was a really great book, just very emotional and raw to read). Either way it´s more important to keep your joy of reading, than to finish a specific book or the challenge.


message 5: by Jacqueline (new)

Jacqueline | 407 comments When I’m stuck in a rut I usually find myself a shorter fast book like a cozy mystery or something silly. Fluff basically. I like to read Agatha Raisin by MC Beaton when I need to get myself back on track. I read Artemis Fowl by Eoin Colfer (and its sequel) when I hit a wall a couple of months ago. I’d been reading too many books that were knocking the stuffing out of me and leaving me empty. A couple of good kids books and I was back on track. Or I pick up something I’ve read before.

And I try to change genres when I finish a book. My last book was a gripping murder investigation in the Australian bush (The Dry by Jane Harper). The one I’m reading now is more like chick-fic. The story of 5 women on and around a cattle station in the Northern Territory. No murders here. Just life matching on. (The Inaugural Meeting of the Fairvale Ladies Book Club by Sophie Green). My next book will be something completely different. I’ve promised myself a visit to the scifi/fantasy section of my bookcase :) And I probably should get out of the Australian bush. I already live there and I’ve read quite a few lately that are set there.


message 6: by Cindy (new)

Cindy I get into reading ruts when I lose focus on the reading process and enjoying it. Sometimes I tend to focus on the next challenge and that is not what reading is about. I read short stories to get out of the reading ruts.


message 7: by Anne (new)

Anne Cleanse the palate! Read something short that you love. I would read a paperback cozy mystery or a romance, but someone above mentioned a graphic novel (something that would put me in a rut!). Short, to your taste, fun, frothy, beach reading material. Don't just read one and dive back in -- fully cleanse your reading palate. If you need a couple, just do it.

Finally, if you need to DNF whatever is stalling you, do it. Life is too short to read stuff you hate.


message 8: by Alee (new)

Alee Hofman | 7 comments I definitely go for something light when I am in a rut such as YA fiction, or my other go-to is memoirs or autobiographies.


message 9: by Hayjay315 (new)

Hayjay315 | 137 comments This year something I have found that is helping to keep me on track with my reading and been fun is to theme my reading each month. Sometimes, like this month it matches the current season or back in March when winter was hanging on for far too long where I live I focused on books containing grand adventures!


message 10: by Ellie (new)

Ellie (patchworkbunny) | 1325 comments Dare I say it, but sometimes the cure to a reading slump is to not read for a bit. I usually read every day because it's instinct but actually spending some time watching a TV series or doing a different hobby that you enjoy, and not even thinking about books for a while, can help.

It can be hard if you're falling behind on something but I genuinely believe putting those kind of pressures on our reading makes slumps worse. Try a few novellas and comics/graphic novels which will make you feel like you're achieving more in a shorter space of time.


message 11: by Chinook (new)

Chinook | 731 comments Agree with everyone. To keep out of rugs I tend to change up genres and formats and lengths regularly. I usually have an audiobook and an ebook going all the time, but as I read longer books, I’ll throw in a novella or graphic novel just for a change. Sometimes I have a paperback going too. I vary genres usually and fluff with more emotional or factual books.

The worst reading rut I’ve ever experienced was when I was pregnant with my oldest. I had zero concentration. What broke it was rereading the Pern series - I think it was only maybe 4-5 of them, but that came after a break where I watched a lot of TV and played board games during the time I’d normally read.


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