How selective reading can be a genius move
Yes, it’s June and we are in the middle of the year. We all have been confined to our homes for the last three months, and time has been flying in a wait to get this pandemic finally over. But, it’s all uncertain just like our lives.
Most of us have been working from home or might be preparing for some competitive exams or looking for a job or just enjoying doing nothing at home. So, it is the best time to develop a habit of reading. But not just reading, I am talking about selective reading here.
I choose books after a lot of research. Because I am going to spend my money and the next few weeks over that book. And there are a lot of books in the market with endless fancy names. If you want to become a good reader, you must spend time in researching about the books you are going to read.
Francis Bacon once said, “Some books should be tasted, some devoured, but only a few should be chewed and digested thoroughly”.
What is a great book according to you?
The definition of a great book varies from person to person. For some, it is non-fiction or might be mythology or fiction or poetry book. I read all the genres, in fact sometimes political books and international affair books too. But the case with you can be different.
People generally start reading by reading non-fiction books inspirational books or self-help books. This is the genre that is widely read by most of the students and people in their twenties. But when you become a good reader with time, you gradually start to develop your interest in fiction books too.
Fiction books are interesting and the characters, storyline everything teaches us a lot or remains with us even after the book finishes. But the things taught in self-help books will be easily forgotten unless you bring it into active practice. Poetry is mostly read by dreamers, lovers, or philosophers.
Franz Kafka, one of the most acclaimed and influential writers of the twentieth century. He shared his definition of a Great Book in his 1904 letter to his friend Pollak:
“I think we ought to read only the kind of books that wound and stab us. If the book we’re reading doesn’t wake us up with a blow on the head, what are we reading it for? So that it will make us happy, as you write? Good Lord, we would be happy precisely if we had no books, and the kind of books that make us happy are the kind we could write ourselves if we had to. But we need the books that affect us like a disaster, that grieve us deeply, like the death of someone we loved more than ourselves, like being banished into forests far from everyone, like a suicide. A book must be the ax for the frozen sea inside us. That is my belief.”
“You should be extending your stay among writers whose genius is unquestionable, deriving constant nourishment from them if you wish to gain anything from your reading that will find a lasting place in your mind.”
What happens when you do a selective reading?
When you start intelligently picking your books, you would be reading with a purpose. The purpose could be anything from keeping your mind active and upgrading your thinking process to finding a joyful time in the world of books.
With selective reading, you would develop a better understanding of yourself too. This skill would come naturally to you with time. As time passes, you would understand your taste in books, and know which and what genre you like reading most. So, have patience and keep reading selectively.
Book Recommendation of the month (June): Godan by Munshi Premchand (Fiction Category)
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See you next Sunday!
With great love and respect!