There’s nothing better than traveling to another world, going on epic adventures, and experiencing life through someone else’s eyes. I’ve always loved losing myself in a great story, and reading has always been a part of who I am. It gets harder and harder to find time to spend reading as life gets busier and more chaotic. I’ve had to find new and creative ways to squeeze reading time into a busy day, and I’ve been pleasantly surprised at how much it’s opened my eyes.

I began using Goodreads as a way to track what I’ve read, what I want to read, and to set a reading goal each year. Setting goals is a great motivator for me, and I find myself competing with friends and even myself to read more. As the end of the years looms closer I always push myself to make sure I reach that goal. Sometimes I have to branch out of my usual genres when it gets down to the wire. Last year, I learned I enjoy reading Graphic Novels and Junior Fiction Novels, when I had to squeeze shorter, quicker reads in to make my reading goal for the year. I also realized, though I don’t like leaving things unfinished, when it comes to reading, time is too precious to slog through something I’m not enjoying.

I’ve always been a traditionalist when it comes to books, and I developed a bias towards e-books and audio books. I’ve always found comfort in having a book by my side, and I carry one with me wherever I go. Sometimes, having a physical book isn’t possible or practical. I get bored easily, and if I’m not able to pull out my trusty book sidekick I find myself scrolling aimlessly through social media. It occurred to me that having an e-book version of whatever I’m reading is a great way to squeeze in more reading time. I use Overdrive or Hoopla and always check out whatever I’m reading as an e-book or e-audio book. I can read while going on walks, doing chores, waiting in line, and even on long trips in the car (so much more convenient than holding a flashlight). I still prefer my trusty physical book, but there are so many other resources out there to reach my reading goal, and there’s no right or wrong way to read.

The best way to enhance your reading experience and increase your reading time is to try out different genres, different types of media, and to find what works best for you. I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised at how much your reading horizons will broaden when you branch out of your usual reading habits. Time flies by, and there’s no reason you shouldn’t be able to spend some of it doing what you love!


Written by: Beth Todtenbier Public Services Supervisor for the Kenton County Public Library.

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