Thursday, November 04, 2010

Thursday Thirteen #50 . . . 13 Changes In My Reading Habits

Over the last ten years or so, I’ve noticed a number of changes in my reading habits. Sadly, most of the changes haven’t been for the better and “sad” is also a good way to describe what I felt while compiling this list. Will I ever regain the same sense of joy I once felt when I curled up in bed with a good book or my favorite magazine? Will Nooks and Kindles ever come close to duplicating the warm and fuzzy feelings of contentment I experience when my face is buried in the pages of a book that I can’t put down? I’m not hopeful.

1) I no longer read or subscribe to the local newspaper on a daily basis. I’ve been reading the newspaper on a somewhat regular basis since I was twelve. However my desire to read and subscribe waned upon my move from Memphis, TN to Cleveland, OH, approximately 9 years ago. I’ve since moved to North Carolina, but I still haven’t reclaimed the time or desire to read the paper on a daily basis.

2) I do subscribe to the weekend (Fri-Sunday) edition of the local newspaper. Still, often times, I don’t read any of the papers until Sunday.

3) I no longer purchase or attempt to read the Sunday New York Times. Back in the day, the hubby and I used to love picking up a Sunday NY Times before paying a visit to our favorite pancake house. Eating pancakes, drinking coffee and discussing what we read in the Times used to be a treat.

4) I no longer purchase or attempt to read the NY Times Book Review. For years, even after I stopped reading the Sunday NY Times, I’d still purchase a copy of their book review. Think that stopped around about the time my son came into the picture.

5) I stopped subscribing to “O” magazine several years ago. When I started accumulating large piles of unread copies, I knew it was time to call it quits. I still like “O” and occasionally I’m moved to pick up a copy, but I really wish it was a bit thinner and/or came out every other month.

6) I still subscribe to “ESSENCE” magazine. But the writing on the wall isn’t good. Like “O” in recent years I’ve begun accumulating large piles of unread copies. Unlike “O” though, I think I’ve become increasingly dissatisfied with the magazine’s content.

7) I no longer read several novels and non-fiction titles in a single month. Once upon a time, it wasn’t unusual for me to read 6-7 books (and sometimes more) in a month. Now, if I manage to read 1 every other month, I’m happy.

8) I no longer visit the library on a regular basis. Visiting the library was once something I once did at least a couple of times month. Sometimes I’d visit and read magazines and journals for hours. These days when I visit, I feel like I’m lost in a forest.

9) I no longer visit the bookstore on a regular basis. Visiting a bookstore used to be something I very much looked forward to doing at least once a week. I still enjoy my visits, but they don’t occur quite as often and I don’t browse as long as I once did.

10) On occasion, I still purchase a number of magazines and journals, but I seldom read them in a day or even a week’s time. I hate throwing them out unread, so I’ve been keeping them in boxes and hoping my stash doesn’t land me on an episode of “Hoarders.”

11) Once upon a time, I routinely read in bed before calling it a night. I can’t remember the last time I took a book or a magazine to bed with me. Even if I tried, I’m sure I’d be asleep after a paragraph or two.

12) I used to give my reading material my undivided attention. These days, when I read, either the TV is on, I’m listening to music or I’m simultaneously engaging members of my family in conversation. Oddly enough, on those rare occasions when I do find myself alone with a book, rather than relish the moment, I start feeling guilty, as if I really need to be “doing” something . . .

13) More and more, the news and information I read is coming from online sources. Ah yes, the computer. It’s making our lives easier, providing us with a variety of entertainment outlets and allowing us access to all kinds of information, but might it also be stealing and/or stifling some of life’s simpler pleasures in the process?

Does anything on my list sound familiar? Have you noticed similar changes in your own reading habits?

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April said...

Ugh, I know exactly what you mean! I used to read up to 50 or 60 books a month and now I'm down to maybe one a month. :( Work, kids and life in general tend to get in the way of reading!

Danielle said...

Yes..I scan the paper for something I'm interested in rather then read the entire thing. And I don't read as many books I'd like to and don't have time to browse magazines. Thanks to my crazy kids! Good List!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for visiting my blog & leaving a comment. :)

I too find that I don't read nearly as many books as I used to read. However, I'm trying to change that! When I moved to a new state last month with no family and no friends around - I went to the bookstore. I have a small stack of books (I think 5) and several of them I've started. I've, of course, found other things to occupy my time...but at least reading is back on my radar.

Alice Audrey said...

These days the only time I read the local paper is when I read it online.

Brenda ND said...

Interesting post. I think we're all changing our reading habits.

Heather said...

After going through a bit of a reading funk in the early 2000s, I've been reading more the last couple years, averaging about 8 books a month (I'm up to 90 so far this year). Like you, I do not read the paper as often as I used to. No longer subscribe, though I occasionally pick up a Sunday issue, and I never remember to read online.

kandyblossom said...

You've made me take a serious look at my own reading habits, and I am finding the same changes as you mentioned. Need to think about making some new and better changes!

Happy TT and thanks for stopping by my blog.

Adelle Laudan said...

I definitely with you when it comes to Newspapers. I find them very depressing. I hope you find your love for the written word again. Why not try to pick up a genre you've never indulged in. Maybe its just a case of changing it up a bit.
Happy T13!

ohradiogirl said...

Oh Lori ... you've got to get the reading bug back.

I have a long commute to and from work, so I often will print out long articles from the New Yorker, The Atlantic, etc for reading on the bus. I also have download podcasts.

As for reading before bed ... I do this almost nightly even if it's only a few pages. Love it. And on the wknds, I get in a few more pages before I get out of bed.

Like you, I'm reading a good amount of material online especially the newspapers.

Shellshock said...

I saw myself in a number of places, particularly the newspaper portions. I, too, had been reading newspapers since I was about 9 and regularly picked up the NY Times on Sunday -even subscribed for a number of years. The local paper has been disappointing, but I have vowed to subscribe again, but only a couple of issues a week.
I'm not reading as many books, but I have recently picked up the pace and I still love to read before going to bed and long for a Saturday morning curled up with a book.