This post was a blog I wrote for Wordery: (https://goo.gl/vsqVPY)
How you know you’re a binge reader, and why this is definitely not a bad thing.
So, you’ve just woken up, and the first thing you do is reach for your book. Maybe you have to actually get a degree somehow by going to university, or go to work like those “proper” adults do. Maybe you end up taking a book with you amongst the folders you need for your classes, perhaps even a spare one just in case you finish the first one. Maybe it’s 3am and your chances of having a decent sleeping pattern have ended, just like the book you’re holding in your hand.
“Sure, I’ll lend you the book because you read so fast”, a friend said just last week. I have been in university for three months and I have already built up a reputation.
“You’ve finished it?!” A different friend comments after I finish ‘All The Light We Cannot See’ when I started reading it after her and yet finished it before her. (Very beautifully written, if I may add.)
“Do you spend all your time just reading?” My mother asks on FaceTime one night, knowing that I’ll probably have finished all the books I received for Christmas by the end of January.
If these symptoms sound relatable, you are most definitely one of us.
Since college, I have demolished any sort of structure to the type of books I read, or when I read them. Sometimes it feels like I spend more time choosing a book than actually reading it.
It’s serious business.
Can I commit to a whole series right now? I think, glancing at the Hannibal series stood neatly in a row. Maybe a different book from an author I know I love? I wonder, as I notice ‘Another Day‘ obediently nestled in line. What about a book everyone seems to be into right now? My gaze rests upon ‘All the bright places’. Or maybe, something completely new all together?
The Oxford English Dictionary describes a binge as: A period of excessive indulgence in an activity. I wholeheartedly agree, as I read more beautifully woven sentences that form a story that I will dwell on for a while after. Although reading is generally a solitary hobby, I can’t help but enjoy discussing a book with my best friend, especially when she’s read it too. Book exchanges are what I live for- while a problem shared is a problem halved, a library shared is in fact a library doubled.
In my defence, a book doesn’t run out of battery, it doesn’t involve some sort of subscription, the words don’t change. Your perception of a story will change as you grow (I used to be OBSESSED with the Malory Towers books as a kid and now I cringe at the language used), or maybe you can relate more to it as you experience life (Calling all angst-ridden teens, there’s a whole demographic out there for you).
I see binge reading not as a problem, but as a SOLUTION. A solution that may lead to a little less sleep, but a lot more wonder. And wow, it is wonderful.