One word at a time

I’ve always been a slow reader. I’m not sure why, but it depends on what I’m reading. If I’m reading for comprehension, at work for example, I can skim-read with the best of them, faster than most, in fact. But if I’m reading for pleasure, then I like to take my time, savour the text, absorb it and let my mind create connections and wander off on related tangents. I find that it makes for a fuller and broader experience. Besides, as others have noted, “there is something to be said for living with a book for [a] length of time“. I say this having just finished an enormously (overly) long science fiction trilogy which spread out over a large chunk of my time, due to the fact that opportunities to sit down and have a good read for a few hours only come along a couple of times a week for me. While I’m glad I got through (all 3000 + pages) of it, I also feel free now to move on to other (hopefully shorter) things. Like Proust…And before you ask, no, I don’t move my lips when I read. Although I do purse them.
UPDATE: Looks like I’m not the only one

One thought on “One word at a time

  1. simonlitton October 16, 2007 / 3:35 pm

    Comments from:

    Posted on Jun. 24th, 2007 09:34 pm (local)
    I’m a slow reader as well. I like to linger over the words and think about them. I like to “hear” them as I read, the cadence of the writing, the rhythm of it.
    My husband and children breeze through books, devour them really. I nibble and graze and savor the flavors. Unfortunately, sometimes books go stale for me in the process, and I don’t finish!

    Posted on Jun. 25th, 2007 10:27 pm (local)
    A science-fiction trilogy, eh? Are you familiar with Maurice Dantec? I’m in the middle of translating Grande Jonction from French to English; just finished doing the same with Cosmos Incorporated and it’ll be released next summer by Del Rey Books. Hope you’ll read them and tell me what you think :).

    Posted on Jun. 26th, 2007 08:59 am (local)
    I’m only familiar with Dantec from having read his name on your blog, but I could be tempted to try. Although I need a break from epic SF for a while. At the moment I’m reading “La Vie Devant Soi” by Romain Gary, which I highly recommend.


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