How Do You Read?

posted in: Ally Broadfield, Books | 14

I’ve been an avid reader from Research the moment I learned to read. I spent my first ten years in a very small town in northern Michigan. Luckily we moved to Ohio the summer I turned ten, because I had read all of the children’s books in our small library. By the time I turned twelve, I had finished all of the children’s books (including what little YA there was in the 1980s) in the much larger library in Ohio and moved onto the adult books.

One thing that has always been consistent for me is how I read, which is very quickly and without stopping. Of course, that was much easier when I was younger, had fewer obligations, and could stay up all night to finish a book. I usually know immediately if a book is going to hold my attention. I used to push through and finish every book I started, but with increasing demands on my time, I now give a book two or three chapters to hook me before setting it aside. Though historical romance will always be my first love, I also enjoy reading historical fiction, young adult, new adult, mystery, suspense, thrillers, biographies, and select non-fiction.

Beyond GoogleI have to confess that it’s only been over the last few years, since I’ve been contracted to write books and turn them in within a specific time frame, that I’ve attempted to change my reading habits. For a time I struggled so much that I stopped reading for several months, but I was so unhappy I finally convinced myself that I could learn to read without it being all consuming. To me, setting down a book is like going to a movie theater and watching only the first forty-five minutes of a movie and leaving. But I’ve (mostly) trained myself to be able to put the book down and read over several days instead of hours. But if I have the time, I still binge read. I read eleven books during our recent, seven-day family vacation, and stayed up until 5:00 a.m. to finish a book I started at 11:00 p.m. the first night. Old habits die hard.

So, what about you? How do you read?

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VICTORIA VANE is an award-winning author of smart and sexy romance with works ranging from wild comedic romps to emotionally compelling erotic romance. Her books have received more than twenty awards and nominations to include the 2014 RONE Award for Treacherous Temptations and Library Journal Best E-Book romance of 2012 for The Devil DeVere series. She lives the beautiful upstate of South Carolina with her husband, two sons, a little black dog, and an Arabian horse.

14 Responses

  1. tracikenworth

    I usually have to make due with an hour-and-a-half before bedtime. But I keep books with me for dr. appts. and running errands and being stuck somewhere for a good length of time. These books are not necessarily the same. I like to keep a few different books going at once.

    • allybroadfield

      Thanks for stopping by, Traci! I always have a book with me, as well. I almost never read more than one fiction book at a time, but I will read a biography or other non-fiction, and that’s what I keep in my purse for those times when I’m stuck somewhere. 🙂

  2. Barbara Monajem

    I used to binge read when I was a kid, but having kids of my own messed with my attention span, and I have never recovered it! Only rarely do I find myself unable to put a book down. I have become much pickier, too — often I read a few chapters, maybe a third of a book, before skimming to the end or just not finishing it. Often they’re quite good books, too, but I just don’t have time to read everything. Mostly, I finish books where the writing really wows me.

    • allybroadfield

      I have the same problem, Barbara. I try really hard to turn off the internal editor/writer and just enjoy reading, but sometimes I can’t. *insert big sigh*

  3. Victoria Vane

    Hi Ally! I always used to read books straight through as well. In high school, I read Gone with the Wind in a weekend. I remember starting it on a Friday night and reading until I couldn’t keep my eyes open. I slept, woke up and read some more. A book has always had to grab my interest or I will put it down. I no longer read books that don’t fully engage me simply because there are too many great books I have too little time.

    • allybroadfield

      LOL, Victoria. I used to do that, too. I’m glad I’m not the only one. I even took books in the shower with me when I was in high school.

  4. eileendandashi

    Ally, enjoyed your blog. I remember the days of reading hours upon end, but can’t do that anymore. My evening are usually spent reading, say from 8-11 p.m. They while my husband is enjoying the news (at the table), I read, again probably 1 1/2 hours. Responsibilities call and I can’t always read, however much I’d love to. I’m not a TV watcher.

    • allybroadfield

      Thanks for coming by, Eileen. I have two shows I watch with my kids, but that’s it. Reading time is precious. 🙂

  5. Maggi Andersen

    When I was a child, I used to read until the early hours of the morning, but after working at the computer all day I can’t do that anymore. I snatch moments of reading throughout the day. My kindle goes with me everywhere. Kindle has changed my reading habits, where I used to read a print book to the end, even if it didn’t really grab me, I’ll more on after a few chapters now. So many good books to choose from, so little time.

    • allybroadfield

      I’m still not very good at reading in short bursts, but I’m trying to train myself. You are so right about there being so many good books, and I’ll probably never have time to read them all.

  6. jessicajefferson

    I used to skip school and read sometimes (wild child that I was). I giggled when I read about the YA in the eighties. I’m from a small town and YA consisted of The Babysitter’s Club, the new Nancy Drew, Sweet Valley High, and some historical series with the names of girls as titles. Young adults don’t know how good they have it these days…

    • allybroadfield

      LOL, Jessica. I never read any of those. There was a Madeleine L’Engle YA series about Vicky Austen that I loved, a few Paul Zindel books, and Judy Blume – Forever was so risque!

  7. Mishka Jenkins

    I read sporadically and when I can 😀 But when I find a book I love, I usually have to keep reading and cannot stop!

    • allybroadfield

      I think that’s the best way to do it! Thanks for stopping by, Mishka.