Books Magazine

The Cons of Being a Fast Reader

By Megan Love Literature Art & Reason @meganm922
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So, I’m a fast reader.
I’m not saying that to brag.

There are cons to being a fast reader. Seriously.
Here they are:
Not getting enough time inside of a book. I can’t slow down my reading, so when I’m devouring a book and that’s all there is, it’s over. Even with series, I end up finishing them way too fast. I feel strong desires to reread books, especially series, because I never spent enough time there. But then, I feel bad neglecting my TBR shelf, so I move on to another book. I read in my free time, which isn’t always a lot, but I still manage to finish a book within a couple of days. Even when I force myself not to read as much.
The waiting. So many of the books I read are parts of unfinished series. If only I could read slower or time myself better. After a week of devouring a series, I’m left waiting months before the next book comes out.
Being a fast reader, but also hating not meeting deadlines/being late. This is especially horrible when a movie is releasing. Of course, I want to read the book before the movie comes out. And to meet that deadline, is start a couple of weeks ahead of time. Except I read faster than I anticipate, so I’m left finishing a book, starting on a few more, and then not necessarily remembering all of the details by the time the movie comes out because I’ve stuffed my brain with other things with feels.
The judgment from other readers (or even nonreaders). Yes, I’m a fast reader. I read fast. Neither of those statements mean anything other than.. you guessed it.. I read quickly. Never once did I say I was smarter, better, superior, quicker to process information, or happier. I’m NEVER putting down other readers. When you are a slow reader, we are talking about speed. We are ONLY talking about speed. Being a slow reader doesn’t mean you’re stupid or slow in the sense that that term is used to describe mental limitations. People get so offended when I tell them I’m a fast reader and it really bothers me.
More judgment. On the flip side, other people decide to put ME down for being a fast reader. If I say I read fast, I’m met with comments like, “Oh, so you just skim?” or “You’re not REALLY processing all of that info.” Seriously? You really think I’d have this hobby, this love, and spend all of this money on things I’m not actually reading?! I would never say to a slow reader “Oh, so you need to read that slow in order to GET it?” because the speed in which we read is what works for us. When we read for pleasure, we read at our OWN pace.
Reading so many books. Reading so many books is a good thing because it doesn’t take me very long to catch up or devour a series. However, the more books I read, the more books I forget. My blog is a REVIEW blog because I need to review for me. As soon as I reread a review, details come back to me. Without that, the amount of books I read would blur together and I’d be a pile of mush. I review to help me organize and remember the details of books I truly loved.
People thinking I Read TOO Much. Reading quickly and reading as often as my schedule allows means I read a lot of books. No, I don’t spend ALL of my time reading. Yes, I have a life. This may be TMI, but I can probably read 50-100 pages (depending on the style of writing) of a book just in the bathroom. Lunch breaks? Depending on the length, a couple of chapters. Before bed? Sometimes hundreds of pages within an hour or two. And honestly, that’s probably all I get to/try to read. I try to read a bit while drinking coffee and eating breakfast, but I sometimes choose to blog or check my email or catch up with other things.
Most of the time, I wish I was a slower reader. I enjoy being able to read so much during short breaks, but other than that, I don’t really enjoy being a fast reader. Getting through MORE books doesn’t mean my TBR shelf ever gets any shorter. But, I’ve never been on the other side of the equation. I feel like slower readers aren’t judged as harshly, but I’m not sure. Just because I don’t see it doesn’t mean it’s not there.
Do you feel like people judge you for how fast or slow you read?
What are your thoughts?

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