I have loved to read since I could remember.
When I was little, instead of playing outside, I wanted to read. For Christmas and birthdays, I would always ask for books and my punishments for acting out was taking away my books. My grandma would always have new books ordered for me when I visited her house and in Elementary school, I quickly read all the books that were available in the classroom.
You could say I'm a book nerd.
And my love of books and reading hasn't faded as I've grown older. When I turned sixteen I got my first job at Barnes and Noble's and worked there for three years as a bookseller. I loved going around and organizing and putting out all the new reads. I would talk to customers about their favorite titles and help them discover new ones.
Now, with my blog, I receive books from publishers to read and review, my Amazon cart is filled with books I want to buy, and I am a regular at Book Outlet. I am even going to college to eventually be a book editor and write my own book. So you could say my love of reading has amplified and expanded.
However, getting older also means getting more responsibility and that means a little less time on my hands. I work long hours, go to school, have commitments, are involved in clubs and organizations, and come home tired almost every day. Getting myself to read can sometimes be difficult.
Social media will also distract me. It's easier for me to lay in bed and mindlessly scroll through Instagram than focus on reading a book. I also am in the habit of deciding to take a four-hour nap rather than reading.
This year, however, I decided to change that. Every year on Goodreads I had always set my goal to 100 books a year, but always fell short. Well, this year I was going to make it to 100. I was going to read 100 books. Which was probably easier said than done.
I went to my local library and checked out a huge bag of books and ever since that day in January, I have been bulldozering through them. It can be hard to get myself to start a book sometimes, especially if I have so many other things going on, but once I start, man, I will be in that same place for hours just reading and reading and reading.
I have now read 41/100 books so far to date and I have enjoyed each story I encountered and the characters I have learned so much from. I realized that there is time for reading, you just have to find it. If you keep making excuses to not read, then that book will stay on your nightstand forever.
Reading is such an underrated form of entertainment these days. Social media, friends, and the thought process that you have to always be going going going seems to have stopped people from sitting down and just enjoying a good book.
This needs to change.
Reading is such a magical thing. You have literally transported away from your life, problems, and worries to a place where the only thing that matters is your imagination. It's great to take your eyes off the screen and put them on paper for a little bit.
Go to your local coffee shop, library, or favorite place, and just spend an hour or two reading. It can be anything – non-fiction, self-help, fiction, Young adult, graphic novel, and romance – just read. You will feel pretty relaxed and content right after. I promise you.
So grab that book that is sitting on your nightstand – you know the one – and read it. You may learn something new and get to explore a different place. Something magical. Something wonderful.