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/lit/ - Literature

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9720355 No.9720355 [Reply] [Original]

It takes me months...
I also spend ages trying to imagine what each character looks and sounds like

>> No.9720382

That's why you're smarter than all of them put together, OP. Don't try to go faster.

>> No.9720403

Speed reading is a meme.
don't fall for it.

>> No.9720418

Hey I recognize that guy. He frequents the local pub on Saturdays. Very protective about his private life.

>> No.9721566

That's interesting...

>> No.9721582
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>used to be able to read a 400 page book in two days
>read two+ books a week
>love it
>absolutely voracious reader
>can't read anymore
>"I'm just having a bad day"
>"I'm just having a bad week"
>"I'm just having a bad month"
>"I'm just having a bad year"
>x2, x3, x4, x5...
>want nothing more than to read again like I used to
>to completely submerse myself in books again
>medication, therapy later
>can read again
>but not like I used to
>slowly, slowly, 2 books a month is a good pace
>usually longer, sometimes faster
>I'll never be a child again
>I'll never experienced that pure elation again
is this what heartbreak feels like?

>> No.9721606

Being a tradie so I can listen to audiobooks for 8hrs a day

>> No.9721614

Have you ever been checked for dyslexia? Because speed reading is a meme but taking over a month to read anything but the biggest of tomes at the most casual of paces is a prime indicator of some variety of mental retardation.

>> No.9721615

I like to read but I also like to smoke and my reading speed gets cut in half if I'm baked. Or worse, I can't focus and reread the same line 20 times before I catch myself.

>> No.9721622

you're all good OP
take it slow and absorb it. most speedreaders are filthy liars

>> No.9721637

Just microdose Lsd bro

>> No.9721662

You're doing almost exactly what you're supposed to do.
Only point I'd give is not to get caught up in visualizing characters and scenes, as you'll find such details are usually irrelevant. Instead, dedicate that time and energy to understanding major themes, plot elements, deeper points of characterization, symbolism (if you feel it's there), devices of metonymy and metaphor, prose style, etc. You'll find that you enjoy reading books a lot better.
Also, I find that getting through a book is a lot easier when I'm reading two or three at once. If I find myself slogging through a chapter more than I should, or if one writer is starting to get on my nerves, I can always take a break without losing time. I usually can read an average of a book a week or more at that pace, rather than the month it would usually take me.
And don't read fiction exclusively. Take your time to read history, philosophy, science, theory, theology, primary sources, even quality pieces of journalism, biography, and memoir. Absorbing a diverse range of texts means that you'll have a broader set of tools with which to approach a text, whether literary or no.

>> No.9721749

A lot of people on this board lie about how much they read. I have done it many times too in the past. Also we love to shitpost about books we haven't even read.

>> No.9721757

i read pretty slow but i also daydream a lot and don't end up retaining most of the shit i've read

>> No.9721793

it's not really about reading faster but spending more time reading

>> No.9721834

This. The answer to your question, OP, is that you've got a really good imagination, and possibly even love, and most people, or at least I do not

>> No.9721841

I read a 300 page book in ten days. I probably could do six days.

>> No.9721843
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I tried reading hundreds of books in my life, I finished reading maybe 8. Shit's almost impossible, they're way too boring. Maybe try getting audiobooks instead. Sadly, most free audiobooks have shit-tier readers so that doesn't help either. They're also generally fiction which is even more boring than non-fiction. Fuck this world.

>> No.9721850

Exactly. Last night I spent what must have been half an hour trying to imagine the platform of a train station in the rain in a town in northern England sometime between the wars, the way a little girl sitting at a window looked at the protagonist as he was embarking the train, the order in which he pushed his luggage up, the way his hat ("a trilby") and his coat ("herringbone tweed") must have looked, the brogue of the old fellow by the window. Then I had to reimagine the whole thing again as I realised a couple of sentences further that he was getting off the train, not on--the whole thing is just the first page of a novel that starts kind of in media res. This is why I'm such a slow reader (and not the fact that i spend so much time here, no, that can't be it, nope).

>> No.9721889

Dude, it's just because children's books are short as fuck. Go open a Gary Paulsen book or something, even though it looks somewhat lengthy the word spacing, letter spacing, and font size are all huge.

>> No.9721892

I hate that I can't read faster. I met a guy that finished several novels every day. Took like an hour or something to read one novel.

>> No.9721893

whats a tradie

try kratom

>> No.9721897

if thats your thing you should check the book 'the peregrine' out. op too. think youll dig it

>> No.9721900

try suicide

>> No.9721905

Depends on the book, OP. Some short novellas are bound to only really take a week to a weekend, whereas some lengthy novels are supposed to be enjoyed over the course of a few weeks, if not a few months. I have found myself reading shorter works that have taken me a while though depending on how dense the prose is and I've also found myself burning through lengthy novels too because of how enjoyably paced and fun they are (Don Quixote comes to mind).

Genuinely, OP, it doesn't matter if you're a slow reader or not. I suppose if you read quickly there could be work available, but when reading for recreation then reading shouldn't really be a race. Take your time, get comfortable, my dude.

>> No.9721909

I do the imagining of little details with everything, from Hesiod to Burroughs. I even went through with it with Beckett's The Unnameable, and that book is mostly just abstract thoughts. You don't want to know what goes through my head as I read, really. As my late father used to say: if a dog had your brain for a second, son, it'd run off howling. But thanks for the rec, I had heard of The Peregrine before. Is it the one where a guy lives in solitude with a hawk and muses on nature and such? Sounds right up my alley, thanks.

>> No.9722602

Personally, I dedicate two hours before going to bed to to reading. Actual books, not computer pdfs, that's the important thing.

>> No.9722667

OP here
Thanks for all the reassurance
I should also mention how, since it takes a while for me to read a single book, I end up becoming quite attached to characters. This is something I enjoy and it often has an impact, albeit a fairly minimal one, on my daily life.

>> No.9722674

There are a lot of factors involved.

Comprehension has a weird relationship to speed. If you go either too fast or too slow, your comprehension lags. If you go too fast, you end up reading the words but not the meaning underneath. If you go too slow, the flow of the entire work breaks down and you start to fixate on every individual word/sentence/paragraph to an autistic degree. DESU, this later method can work really well at generating your own ideas because your own mind has such so much space to work, but the trade off is that your comprehension of the work itself may lack (especially as your own ideas get tangled up in the broader arguments).

There's also the experience question. Trite as its become, the analogy that the mind works like a muscle has some truth to it. The more you read, the more you become accustomed to reading, which makes it an easier process. Moreover, when you've read broadly enough the ideas will start to repeat, only slightly changing form. Pattern recognition is a huge part of why speed readers speed read: they've read it before. But there's an obvious pitfall here: if you're expecting patterns, you'll find them to the exclusion of new concepts, images, and structures.

And then there's the power of the reader's brain. On what level can you abstract? On what level do you engage that abstraction in each specific case? You seem to abstract on a very high level with what you read. I'm honestly a bit envious, but my voracious appetite for breadth limits how slowly I'm willing to read.

This divide has always existed. In the old Catholic Church, there were some people like Aqunius who set out to master the broad theological systems and to demonstrate his mastery, and then there were some mystics who spent hours praying and dreaming about individual verses.

Don't be insecure about your reading speed. You've chosen depth over breadth. We could probably do with more people like you these days.

>> No.9722679

>>9722667 (me)
>attached to characters
*and other aspects of the book

>> No.9722702

how do you read posts so quickly
it takes me days
i also spend ages trying to imagine what each anon looks and sounds like

>> No.9722742

Hearty laff at this post.
Something so "old 4chan" about it, I love it

>> No.9722757

Like others have said, don't feel bad about it. There's no problem with reading slowly if you're reading in-depth.
I don't read as slowly as you do (it typically takes me 1-2 weeks to read a book) but I also spend a lot of time visualizing scenes and characters and mulling over what the author is saying. Sacrificing comprehension for speed isn't worth it -- read at whatever speed best allows you to absorb information.

>> No.9722788

>Knut Hamsun

>> No.9723454

Reading is not a race and don't use to signal
Do it for the enjoyment, the experience or some kind of personal growth

>> No.9723492

Im the exact same senpai used to buy a shit tonne of books now I have a ridiculous back log

>> No.9723758

> this later method can work really well at generating your own ideas because your own mind has such so much space to work, but the trade off is that your comprehension of the work itself may lack (especially as your own ideas get tangled up in the broader arguments).

This is what I do. It's fun, but I only have the liberty to do it because I don't study literature academically. I'm afraid this makes me a philistine.

>> No.9724266

What's kratom?

>> No.9724278

You're doing nothing wrong. I take my time with books too.

People who brag about how fast they're reading books miss the point of books and generally do not understand what they're reading. Pay no mind to them.

>> No.9724299

This. Especially due to the fact that only 25-50 books in your lifetime are even worth reading, so reading 50+ a year is just wasting time

>> No.9724301

Sounds intriguing but also a frustrating exercise. The question is whether you enjoy imagining everything down to the last minute detail, or if it's an involuntary compulsion that's causing you frustration.

>> No.9724788

Both. It is a compulsion but I definitely enjoy it and do not find it a nuisance except for the time it takes me to finish anything. Even so, I'd rather enjoy what I'm reading and milk it for what it has to yield than accumulate GR stats.

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