Why do I read so much?

This is not a rhetorical question! I have been thinking lately about why bibliophiles, such as you and I, are so into reading. In our technological society, there are more leisure pursuits available than ever to compete for our time and attention, yet we stick to an activity which has been popular – if sometimes frowned-upon – for centuries. I’ve come up with 15 reasons – have you got any more to add?

I read so much because…

  • I need something to do while I’m eating / travelling / waiting for visitors, etc.
  • Books engage my brain more than films / TV do.
  • I can’t go to sleep at night unless I’ve read a few chapters first.
  • There are so many interesting books available and I want to read them all.
  • Reading is a significant part of my background and upbringing.
  • I’m a book blogger!
  • I don’t want to disturb the cat on my knee.
  • Books are my friends.
  • A lot of the books I want to read are free.
  • I like to learn new things and gain new perspectives.
  • Books are escapism and I need a lot of that.
  • I have a cup of tea in one hand but the other hand is empty.
  • I want to understand the craft of writing.
  • My favourite books invite multiple re-reads.
  • I’m addicted to reading.

19 thoughts on “Why do I read so much?”

    1. Aww 🙂 My cat doesn’t sit on my knee often but when he does, it’s an honour!

  1. All of that plus it’s a way to travel the world without ever leaving the comfort of your home, and it’s a way to learn things and fun little factoids without even trying. Also, for those of us who read in languages other than our own: it’s great for expanding your vocabulary and keeping your knowledge alive.

    1. Very good points! I’m not much of a traveller so I agree that books help us to travel the world – universe, even! And I love to learn things. The language aspect is interesting and isn’t one I’d considered as I only read in English!

  2. Yes to most of these, plus reading allows the reader to add to the story with her imagination in a way that visual media doesn’t.

    1. Good point – and I’m sure that no two readers imagine things in the same way, so books sort of collaborate with our minds, if that makes sense!

  3. I read to escape this messed up world lol. Mostly as inspiration for my own writing. I’m a book blogger too!! 🙂

    1. Inspiration is a great reason to read – all the best writers should be readers 😀 Escapism is a very important one. The interesting thing about book blogging is it makes you read even more books than you were already!

  4. Love this! You’ve pretty much listed them all, and more succinctly than I. I agree with what others also added: I read for escape (my thoughts/problems/responsibilities, etc.); for inspiration (I am an editor/frustrated, writer); because book clubs have selected them (why I read specific ones); to relax (I really can let go of nearly all my worries when reading); to share in the experience of reading the same book as a friend who suggested the book to me or to discuss in a lit class I’m taking.

    1. Thank you! 🙂 Your reasons are good! Oh yes, shared experiences such as book club reads, buddy reads, study, are a factor too, although they don’t apply to me – I am a solitary reader! Thanks for your input.

  5. What a great post! For me it’s escapism, or the opportunity to live a different life for a little while. I can be male or female, a murderer or a detective, have a love affair or an adventure, live somewhere else or live in a different time. Not that I don’t like my own life, but you know what I mean!

    1. Thanks! 🙂 Oh definitely, it’s good to be in someone else’s shoes, as it were, and escape from oneself.

  6. I don’t have a cat, but otherwise I recognise these. Most often I prefer books to films, maybe because I am getting more restless and can’t focus on one thing for 2 hours+ in a row. With audiobooks, I can do other stuff whilst listening.

    1. The focusing thing is the same with me – the film has to be very good indeed for me to sit through it and films tend to be so long now!

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