There's nothing more depressing for a reader than finding yourself in a reading slump. For some reason this year, I've been struggling finding books that grab me. I've read some great non-fiction and general fiction. But, though there have been a few exceptions, I've been in a pretty significant romance reading slump. That is no bueno for me since that's what I enjoy the most. And it had me worried that maybe I was burnt out on my own genre because I spend so much time writing it.
But this week I finally picked up a book that had been recommended to me and that was already on my shelf, Lisa Kleypas's Again the Magic. The title turned out to be particularly appropriate because I fell into that must-read-every-page-right-now-who-needs-sleep mode. And it was like, YES, there it is, the reading magic. So I was thrilled to realize that no, I hadn't fell out of love with romance. I just haven't been picking books that I connected with. So yay for that.
But it got me to thinking, how does one get out of a reading slump if you catch yourself in one? Because, let's face it, with all the distractions we have these days, it's easy to get out of the habit of reading and then lose the habit altogether. Tragic. I don't care how interesting my phone or that TV show is, I don't want to lose touch with my first love, reading.
So, what can you do if you find yourself in a slump? I wrote about this back in January, so I thought it might be a good time to repost it. :)
GETTING OUT OF THE SLUMP
1. Move on to another book, even if you think there may be nothing particularly wrong with the one you're reading.
Maybe it really is the book. Put the book your reading aside. You may go back to it one day, but right now it's back on the shelf in limbo mode. Life is too short to force yourself to read a book that isn't working for you (no matter the reason). <--This is something I have to tell myself constantly. I have a hard time walking away from a book unless I outright HATE it.
2. Pick something in a different genre or subgenre than what your current read is.
Maybe it's the wrong genre for you at the moment--like it's a sweet contemporary and you really need something darker right now or something with explosions! Or maybe life is chaotic and you need something quieter to read than the thriller or whatever it is you're reading.
3. Get a recommendation from someone who has book tastes you trust. (This is the one that worked for me this time.)
Find that friend or book blogger who is your reading twin. They usually love what you love. Get suggestions from them on the last book that blew them away. Or do what I did and put out a general call on Twitter. "What should I read next? What was the last book you were obsessed with?"
4. Reread an old favorite.
Sometimes you need a sure thing. Pick up that book that you know is going to make you happy. (This one doesn't work as well for me because I'm not a re-reader, no matter how much I love a book. Weird, I know.)
5. Pick an author who usually doesn't let you down.
This is when favorite authors can come in and save the day. Your odds for liking the book are higher if you've read and loved their other stuff.
6. Read something short
Sometimes you just need a quick read, something that you can finish in one sitting, to get you back in the groove. And if you need a suggestion, SHAMELESS PROMO AHEAD, I just had a novella boxed set come out yesterday. You can get four novellas that can each standalone to choose from. :)
7. Commit to picking up another book.
Sometimes I find that when I'm in a reading slump, it takes a lot of energy to go and pick out a new book to read. It's like I'm reluctant to get into another disappointing relationship. But just like in life, you've got to put yourself back out there, lol. So make yourself pick up something else and something else until you find that book that grabs you, woos you, and takes you to bed. Wait, we're still talking about books, right? Maybe I took that metaphor too far. ;)
And if you want to know more about the book that got me out of my recent slump, here's the info.
Again the Magic by Lisa Kleypas
She gave him her innocence . . .
Lady Aline Marsden was brought up to marry a man of her own class, but from the moment she meets John McKenna, she risks everything to be with him.
He gave her his heart
Although their love is forbidden, McKenna's passion for the beautiful Aline is too compelling to deny.
When their secret is discovered, their world is shattered. McKenna is forced to leave forever, unaware that the only reason Aline has given him up is to save him.
Now McKenna has returned, a powerful man determined to take revenge against the woman who broke his heart. But the magic between them burns as fiercely as ever . . . and as McKenna uncovers Aline's deepest secret, together they discover a love that will defy Fate itself.
Anyone else have a reading slump lately? What did you do to get out of it or did you? And to help the rest of us, what was the last amazing book you read?