23 April is World Book Day. Since 1995, countries around the world celebrate this day to promote not just reading but also publishing and copyright. It is also the death anniversary of Shakespeare and Cervantes. Some countries celebrate World Book Day by reading their literary works.
These days, reading is not much as it used to years ago. But, with new technologies around us, reading a book has become a struggle for some people because:
- They don’t have much time or they’re too busy
- They prefer watching TV or films rather than read the novel
- They find it hard to read or can’t read
Too many books, too little time
A recent article stated that 67% of 2000 British adults said they would like to read more but 48% admitted they’re too busy to read. Work and everyday chores are factors that contribute to less reading.
Even I myself admit that I have still have books gathering dust on my bookshelf waiting to be read. Yet, I try my very best to read before going to sleep. Another trick I found much better is reading on my cellphone. I’ve mentioned in another blog that my cellphone has a text reader and even animates the turning of the page. I was able to read a few novels on my cellphone which if I would read it using a hard copy would take me much more time to finish.
Blame the TV or movie versions
Most films get their materials from books. The Godfather, To Kill a Mockingbird, Gone With the Wind, etc. have become films. Until today, films and TV shows came from bestselling novels. Game of Thrones, The Hunger Games, Harry Potter, are just one of them. I admit, there are films that I saw before reading the book. But as much as possible, I don’t like to watch a movie version of a book I love (like the Harry Potter series). I can’t blame other people who prefers watching than reading. These are the so-called “visuals”. Most of the millenials today are “visuals” who would like to see things move.
But the much serious problem is that some people find it hard to read because of their inability to read. Until now, issues on illiteracy continues especially among the poor. With the increasing prices on education, the poor can’t afford to send their children to school. But the key to literacy is reading. One has to progress his skills from the ability to recognize letters, to understand spoken words and decode written words, and to the understanding of the text.
What can we do?
- Start them young. Parents should encourage their kids to read starting with age appropriate books. We are a family of book readers. My husband and I grew up reading books. So when my daughter was still a toddler, I started showing her books for her to read and play with.
- Also, encourage kids to visit libraries and bookstores. With the Internet, it’s easy to get get e-books online. This trend has affected libraries and bookstores. My husband and I still visit bookstores and we tag along our daughter. Now, my daughter tries her hand in writing.
- Read while waiting. Falling in line and doing nothing? Take this opportunity to read. I bring along my cellphone and read e-books while waiting in the bank, while commuting, or whatever that will put me on hold. That takes away the boredom of waiting.
- Give away books to read. The idea of sharing books to someone is another way to encourage people to read. Let me take this opportunity to share with you my works for you to read. Not only they’re entertaining, they’re also FREE.
- Start a reading habit. Try a few suggested tricks on how to develop a writing habit now. I read a book before sleeping. I try to read one book a week but I haven’t achieved reading 52 books a year. I have a list of the Top 100 books and I tick off those that I’ve read.
Do you have any other suggestions? Let us celebrate World Book Day by reading. What book are you reading today?