Being in the 21st century, where everything is fast-paced, I feel like reading has been forgotten. Especially introspecting my life, I felt reading has lost its path, and what exists now is valorized reading.
Something like reading for the sake of reading
As we jump from one sensation to another, from one controversy to another, with an Instagram filter on our minds, this makes me realize that somewhere along the line I forgot to read and that a lot of other people did too.
We can blame it on our short attention span, but at the end of the day, we all reach out for something easy, short, and instrumental, and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with it because we live in perpetual amnesia that is triggered by the world being fast and urgent.
The constant feeling that I will miss out is something that triggers me to take my phone almost every hour, and it’s also something that has triggered a lot of anxiety in these last couple of months.
As I wrote down my thoughts, I figured I had given up on reading and writing somewhere along the line.
And this is an attempt to get back to reading.
If you, my friend, also gave up on reading, you can start again. I’m here to accompany you.
For me, the earliest memories of reading were when I was three and on train journeys. How dad used to get me a magic pot so that I wouldn’t be an annoyance
I am still an annoyance, but my love for books is something that hasn’t left.
Being brought up in a humble household, one of the things that my parents never said no to was books. I used to demand books as presents for every exam I passed.
I still remember borrowing books from friends and libraries and finishing them in two to three days because I loved the rush.
It came to a point where I was reading Jeffery Archer’s When the Crow Flies instead of my history books before my 10th board exams.
Do I regret it? Noooooo
The rush of having that imagination, the rush of going into a parallel universe where I portray the main character, seeing myself in situations, deciding what I would have done and what I wouldn’t, and complex storylines with spicy images keep playing in my head as a slow-motion movie. Enough that someday I could lend my brain cells to Elon Musk to make an extraordinarily brilliant movie.
All these emotions and memories are something that is beyond description.
Books have led me to a web of my past, present, and future, like an island universe that’s interlinked but not yet linked.
For me, a book does affect me; I feel pangs of grief, motivation, empathy, and all the emotions in between as the character develops. It is a small, intimate space of mine that nobody else has access to—sort of a mysterious realm.
Nothing is linear in life, and as life progresses, one of the things that I gave up was books.
Is there a specific reason? No
But I kind of discovered recently that one of the reasons why I had given up on reading was the anxiety in choosing a book.
The fear that I would miss out on this year’s nominations, what if it isn’t good, and this eventually felt like a job, not the one I liked, Going through reviews and feeding on people’s opinions got so tedious that for me reading lost its wonder in this process.
I missed picking out random books from shelves, going with my gut, and thinking it might be a hit. Even if it wasn’t, I would at least be able to take something away.
Now, this screams of slobbishness and elitism, but it is what it is: I was consumed by valorized reading, and I started mimicking other people’s choices instead of giving in to what my heart wanted.
Now, why am I writing this? Humans as a whole are very creative animals, and creativity being the buzzword in this digital era, I wanted to start reading again , be soaked in creative juices .
And I have started again, and the feeling is amazing—not bound by social pressures but doing something from a thick desire.
I don’t want to be a person who is limited to WhatsApp archives; I want to go beyond the perfect sentences and let imagination take its toll. And for this reason, books are my comfort space.
Feel sheer joy and delight, feel uncomfortable, have butterflies in your stomach, cry, and feel all the emotions as I turn every page.
I would say you also just need to give a short
I’m not going to preach a lot, but in the end, there’s so much knowledge to consume. Take anything—a newsletter, audiobooks, nonfiction classics—to feed your soul.
To bring calmness into this fast-paced life
To hold back and embrace emotions and to know yourself better, a book is all you need.
My current read is The ISIS Hostage by Puk Damsgard.
I’m ending this blog with a short poem I wrote on books.
“Now, it’s all being done in the past,
It’s all been written in the book,
and makes you think nothing ever lasts.
Maybe it’s something worth another look.
A string of words floats with fear.
And it encompasses all the emotions in this book.
Nothing is ever black or white.
Nothing comes easy off the hook.
I see people holding on to their past as a book.
Hating themselves more as they look”
If you have read till now, you have discovered my writing is as haphazard as it can get.
And that’s me, all over the place.
So do reach out to me and connect with me so we can share our books and recommendations and get chatty about it.
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