People’s Passion to Peruse

Break the taboo of reading outside of school. Pick up a book and find your “type.”

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Photo Courtesy of Sammi Tester

With so many pieces of literature out there, it can’t be too difficult to find at least one you love.

Sammi Tester, Columnist

When most people think of reading, they think of school. When I think of reading, I imagine entering alternate worlds which are, more often than not, better than the world we know. While I’ll admit some books aren’t great, a majority of them transport you to elsewhere on a ship made of words. Authors create characters that become your best friends, and that’s only the beginning.

When I heard my friend tell me she hadn’t read a book outside of school for a couple years, you could probably hear my heart break. She told me that all the books teachers assign are “boring.” That’s when it clicked: maybe some students are being forced to read pieces of literature they don’t want to read. I know from personal experience that there are definitely literature “types,” and maybe it’s because of school that individuals aren’t exploring the world of literature and finding their own “type.”

Schools don’t let students explore more of a variety of literature. If there are choice novels to read, the options are usually bland with minimal explanation of the plot. The poor students don’t have time to wisely choose what book they are to read. Another problem is annotations. It’s really hard to get into a book once you have to start annotating every other paragraph. I think if teachers gave each class the class more options and possibly an excerpt from the climax of the story, students would be more enthusiastic about reading the piece. Also, teachers shouldn’t make their student annotate, but instead have class discussions about the assigned reading.

Another common excuse for not reading more often is the old “I don’t have time.” However, what they don’t tell you is that, once they get home, they watch countless hours of T.V. and YouTube or say “I’m bored” at least once. Instead of watching brainless entertainment or being bored, those people could be thinking about what will happen next and be excited by the glorious plot and characters of a book. Don’t know where to read? If you want to look hipster, the local coffee shop or library is your place to be. If you are expected to travel for more than 15 minutes, bringing along a good book is great way to be entertained for that time.

If you are having a tough time finding a book to read, try reading the summary on the back or flap on the dust jacket and opening to a page somewhere in the middle and reading the first paragraph on that page. After reading a few books from different genres, you’ll probably find you like one or two genres more than others. That’s your literature “type.”  Personally, my “type” of literature is realistic fiction, non-fiction, or fantasy.

I highly suggest that next time you don’t have much to do, you find a piece of literature and start reading. It doesn’t have to be for school, it doesn’t have to be annotated. It’s there for your enjoyment. Anything from the local newspaper to a top selling book, you can find joy in reading.