Make a Dent in Your Reading Pile

Reading PileI have a confession to make.  Until a few years ago…
I didn’t like to read.

In school, I often stressed over long reading assignments and I rarely ever read for pleasure.  Why?  Because I was a slow reader.

For me, slow reading had nothing to do with any difficulty decoding writing.  I actually learned to read quite early, and I never particularly struggled with the mechanics of the process.  I also didn’t have any problems with reading comprehension.  I made the Honor Roll nearly every semester and I graduated college with a 3.42 GPA.  It was just that reading just always seemed to take me SO MUCH TIME.  I felt secretly embarrassed ashamed that others could do the same about of reading I did in half the time.

This simple 3:36 instructional video changed everything.

It turns out my problem was that I had somehow learned the habit of reading at a speaking pace.  I would actually “say” the words in my head as I read them.  I never recognized I was doing it, and I didn’t know that most people (apparently) don’t.  I was not only able to break my slow reading habit, but I learned some excellent techniques for improving my reading overall.  What a difference!

As a reader and as a writer this has been one of the most valuable pieces of self-improvement I’ve ever done.

I now have stacks of titles in my “to be read” pile that I’m happily looking forward to reading.  Even if you’re comfortable with your own reading pace, I’d encourage you to consider investing the few minutes of your time to watch this video.

You may be surprised by the result.

I’d love to hear from you in the comments.

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9 Responses to Make a Dent in Your Reading Pile

  1. Interesting post. RT @JReaHedrick Make a Dent in Your Reading Pile

  2. RT @LauraJMoss: Interesting post. RT @JReaHedrick Make a Dent in Your Reading Pile

  3. I have to check out that video when I get high-speed in town (we’re constantly on bandwidth curfew with our internet provider – Wildblue – who insists we’re using too much. Really?? For a family of 4??).

    I am absolutely going to watch it though because while I used to be a somewhat fast reader, I have slowed down in my old age. And, I do read aloud in my head too. I always thought it was an ESL thing, but I guess not!

    Thanks, John! Hope to see you in Zionsville tomorrow…

    • John Hedrick says:

      I’d love to know what you think after you watch it.

      As for the SCBWI-IN event in Zionsville, I won’t be able to make it. I’ll be busy tomorrow doing some last minute construction with some of the other Dads on the set pieces for ‘Tom Sawyer’. Move-in is this Sunday!

      The cast will be rehearsing the show every evening on-site next week before opening day on Thursday at 9:30am. 🙂

  4. Okay, I just watched it and will give it a try! Will report back to you in a week or so (if I remember…bad brain; sit, stay). 🙂

  5. Yay! RT @TeresaRobeson: @ShizaruLiving I think the speed-reading exercise per your post is starting to work! 🙂

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