Saturday, April 19, 2014

Why You Should Read--and Love It!

In 2013, 80% of US families didn't buy a book. 70% of adults haven't even read a book in the last five years. 56% of young people claim they've read more than ten books a year. 33% of high school graduates will never read another book. 42% of college students will never read a book after they graduate. 15% of inmates are literate.

These are some sad statistics. We wonder why we get these posts on Facebook by people with atrocious grammar and spelling. We wonder why kids are failing in school. I believe it's because they don't read and particularly read novels.

Thousands of authors put their time (months to years), blood, sweat, tears, and souls into those novels that our generation is ignoring. Obviously published authors have at least some people who read to keep them going, but wouldn't it be nice if we had more people reading? Both young people and adults?

I've asked a group of young readers/writers about what sorts of excuses they've heard from people who don't read give for not reading, and I'm going to debunk them all. Thank you to everyone who contributed. :) Here at thirteen reading excuses debunked:

Excuse #1 "It's not really important." - Reading is indeed important. It is good for your brain. It helps improve concentration, analytical skills, memory, and vocabulary which in turn benefits you in school, work, and just daily life.

Excuse #2: "I don't have time." - Yet you have time to go out with friends and play video games and watch reruns of your favorite show and text your friends and search goofy videos on YouTube or Best Vines. Yeah, you're swamped.

Excuse #3 "Books are boring." - I suppose you think the many shows and movies based on books are boring too then like "How to Train Your Dragon", "Frozen", "Twilight", and "The Hunger Games." Books are stories in another form.

Excuse #4 "I can just watch the movie."- Books have benefits movies do not. They include intriguing details, and the best thing is you can get inside the character's head in a book. You hear their thoughts and observe their motivations by walking in their shoes. You can picture the characters and scenes any way you want. You can immerse yourself in this world created by words upon pages. You can get into another person's head other than your own and that gives you perspective.

Excuse #5 "I can't sit still long enough."- If you can sit still long enough through
school or church or driving or watching a movie or watching fifty plus episodes of your favorite show, you can sit down long enough to read a book.

Excuse #6 "All the plots are the same."- Firstly, do you know the exact definition of a plot? People sometimes confuse this term thinking it's just a basic premise like because that character has a bow in that book and that one does too they're the same. *gets flashbacks of someone confusing my elf costume for a Katniss costume* It is a story line. The story or sequence of events in something such as a novel, play, or movie. There are infinite ways a plot can go. Will that person die? Will they get together? Will they accomplish their goal?

Excuse #7: "I can't relate to any of the characters."- So out of all the millions of books in the world you can't relate to at least one character? I find that very hard to believe.

Excuse #8 "It takes me too long to get into it."- What kind of books are you reading? When were they written? Perhaps you need to switch genres or try a different author. Authors nowadays work hard on hooking the reader as soon as possible and many of them are quite good. I'm sure one will interest you.

Excuse #9 "I have enough reading to do for school/work."- Reading for school is different than pleasure reading. I can get bored reading about some facts about something I care absolutely nothing about that I have to take a test on that counts as fifty percent of my grade that I'm totally dreading. Novel-reading is relaxing and stress relieving. If anything it should help you get through required school reading and become a better reader for school. Plus you learn things during reading so you can look smart around your peers. ;)

Excuse #10 "It's too hard."- What about it is too hard? The big words? The fact that you have to think while doing it? You can increase your vocabulary with the big words, and more thinking never hurt anybody.

Excuse #11 "I'm a slow reader."- That's not really an excuse. It's a fact. I'm a slow reader. Just because you read a book at a slower pace than others that doesn't mean you're incapable of reading. You absorb more by reading slow.

Excuse #12 "They don't have enough pictures."- Number one: How old are you? The only the books that have pictures are children's books unless there's the occasional illustration, but those are rare. Also text messages don't have pictures unless you count the selfie on your friend's profile pic. You read dozens of books worth of texts.

Excuse #13: "There are other forms of entertainment I like better."- After listing all the benefits I've shown you, do you think that you could give it a go again? Reading is a time of peace and edification--with the occasional tense bit that makes you want to jump out of your skin.

When you read an author, a person, long dead or miles away you may never meet is communicating with you and sharing with you a bit of their heart. Read books that lift you up, because they are a great influence on your mind. You may learn something in the book that may change your life and make you a better person.

So join us readers no matter how old you are, no matter if you're rich or poor (there are libraries), no matter what's going on in your life, no matter where you are in the world, and let's go on an adventure.

Have you been inspired to read? Are there any excuses I haven't covered? Have you read a book lately?

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  1. This post makes me want to read right now XD Too bad I have a presentation to work on! Is homework an excuse?

    1. Hee hee. Good. Thanks for commenting. I think that one can slide lol.