Dude, Get Your Ass Reading

I did have the post titled "How to be a Reader in 3 Easy Steps." Upon realizing the boringness of that title, I changed it.  For most of you, telling you "how to be a reader” sounds like a dumb notion. I’d even guess most of you are not only readers, but are probably voracious readers.  Were you always?  Not me.  And there are a lot of people out there who haven’t picked up a book in years.  I bet you know quite a few non-readers out there.  Hopefully, this post will help you, help your friends to get their ass reading.

Whether you’ve always been a reader or you’ve become one in your adult years or maybe you want to be a reader, it only requires one thing…desire.

Maybe it’s the desire to learn about something new.  The desire to understand complex topics.  To improve your knowledge base.  To challenge your thinking.  To escape for a few hours.  To read dirty sex scenes in romance novels for cheap thrills. Or any combination of the above.  I don't judge.

Our brains are just like our bodies, proper nutrition and exercise makes a healthy physique.  Feed your brain and watch your mind grow, your conversations flourish and your vocabulary expand.  (And if your reading cheap sex scenes in romance novels, you might also improve your naked skills.  Just saying.) For me, it became a drug (reading, not improving my naked skills.  Though, now that I think about it....) All the benefits of a high and none of the side effects.

Here are a few steps to help you become a reader:

1. Pick a book.
Sounds like a simple concept but finding something that captures your attention can be very hard.  And for most of my non-reader friends, their first complaint is they can’t find anything interesting to read.  What type of movies/tv shows do you like?  Translate that to books.  Do you like mysteries? Self help books?  Biographies? Romance? General fiction?  Historical non-fiction? You’re not sure because it’s been so long since you’ve picked anything up?  Then ask your friends what they are reading.  Most likely if your friends with someone, you’ll have similar tastes.  Grab the NY Times Best Seller list and eni mini mini mo.  Just pick up ANYTHING to get yourself started.

2.   Take the time.
Whether it’s exercise, learning how to knit, rebuilding a car, refining your naked skills or any other hobby, if you have the desire you will find the time.  The beauty with books is that you don’t need much time.  In December 2008, I became a reader.  It all started with a little move called Twilight.  (Please no one throw up.  I love the movies and books and TOTALLY recognize them as cheesy fluff.  Moving on.) Once I found out they were books, I was hooked.  But finding the time to read became difficult because it wasn’t in my regular routine.  So each night when I went to bed, I told myself to read for 10 minutes.  Well, when you find a good book (“good” being subjective), that 10 minutes quickly became hours and I had to force myself to go to bed at 1am. 

3.  Don’t give up and don’t settle.
You picked a book, you took the time and nothing.  You're now thinking this reading shit is for the birds.  Well, you’ve picked the wrong book.  I know your neighbor’s sister’s cousin and millions of readers think Twilight is the greatest love story ever told but it makes you want to stab your eyeballs with forks.Hell, by all means, PICK A DIFFERENT BOOK!  That’s the genius of books.  There’s a genre out there, just for you!  Don’t settle for something because everyone else loves it and you feel like a total loser for not liking the latest trend.  And don’t give up on being a reader just because the first book or two or ten sucked.  With each book you read, whether you love or hate it, will help you hone in on your tastes.  Before you know it, you will be able to read the first couple of pages of a book and now instantly if you will like it or not. (For the record, you will not improve your naked skills reading twilight.  Bummer.) 

If you’re already a reader, fabulous, then share this post with someone who’s not.  You’re never too old to start reading. (Or improve your naked skills. Just saying.)