I Read More Than I Think I Do

Sometimes, particularly at the end of the year, I worry that I don’t read enough. Mary reads all the time, and sometimes I think it’s more like she inhales the books (or, in this case, the ebooks). I, on the other hand, am a great one for starting an e-book, putting it down for a period of time (measured in weeks or months, and maybe even years), picking it up again, reading some more, etc. until I get through it. If you were to ask me how many books I read during the year, I’d probably tell you four or five. And you would recoil in horror: “My God, you’re a writer and you only read five books this year?”

I was embarrassed about this until I got my statistics from Pocket for the year ending in ten days. Pocket is a service that allows me to put articles, web pages, and blog posts aside to be read later. I use it primarily to hold onto your blog posts, along with any links I might find, when I’m working on my Kindle or my phone, because occasionally those devices can’t open them, or the whole article doesn’t come through on Feedly, or I haven’t the time to read it then (like it’s the middle of the night and I just happen to grab my phone). Likewise, when I happen across an article on Wikipedia (which by now everyone knows is the blogger’s best friend) or a news item, I can save it for later, and I’ve discovered I can save Instagram pictures and YouTube and Dailymotion videos there as well.

Anyway, back to my yearly statistics. Turns out I’m in their top 1% of all users.

screenshot-2016-12-21-15-24-47
Source: Pocket

So, I’ve read the equivalent of 45 books this year on Pocket. Add that to the four or five (it’s actually more than that) actual books I’ve read, and that’s about a book a week. Maybe not reading at Mary’s level, but at the same time it isn’t as though I’m not reading. I think I’m becoming a better blogger, since the majority of those words were from your blog posts.

So, thank you for writing that I’ve really enjoyed and learned something from.

Pocket added social media functionality to their service this past year, where you can see what your friends recommend and where you can recommend things to your friends. I don’t use that part of it, mostly because I’m hesitant to give Pocket access to lists of my Facebook and Twitter friends, and I’m not sure I’d use it much anyway. If any of you are Pocket users and you’re using those features, how do you like them?

And, if you’re not a Pocket user, why not give it a try? I think you’d find it helpful and convenient to use. It’s a free service (although I’m a premium user, at least for this year, at $30). (They aren’t paying me to say that, in case you’re wondering.)

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Author: John Holton

I'm a writer and blogger who writes and blogs about things that interest me.

11 thoughts on “I Read More Than I Think I Do”

    1. You’d be surprised how much reading you do on a daily basis, with or without Pocket. I read through around a hundred blog posts a day, including articles that are linked. At roughly 200 words per post, that’s about 100 pages a day. I just never thought of it as “reading”…

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  1. Believe it or not, I still read only books. Actual paper books. I don’t own a kindle or any other reading tablet and still go to the library. I’ve actually had flight attendants comment during my frequent work travel on the fact that I’m reading an ACTUAL BOOK. Old habits die hard, I guess. There’s just something about the feel of paper I can’t give up. I know I’m missing something and eventually I’ll convert, but for now, I love stealing a few minutes diving into a well-worn paperback!

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    1. You’re not alone; there are a lot of other bloggers that stick with paper. It’s easier for me to use the Kindle (no pages to handle), but in some ways it’s easier to read with pages, plus there can be quality issues with Kindle books (mostly the self-published ones, where the author is in a hurry to get a book published and make money). Mary mostly reads on the Kindle now, but she goes back to paper sometimes. Important thing is you’re reading. I remember my dad reading (a lot of the books on the shelves in Northfield were his), and your dad reading, but I rarely saw Mom read; weird, huh? Especially because she was so big on it with her students…

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    1. Mary loves hers; she says it’s great because she doesn’t have to get off the couch to get another book. I have quite a lot of books out in our shared library that I’ve either not read or only got part of the way through. The problem comes when I go to look for them to add to my Kindle, because I have to plow through all of Mary’s books to get to them…

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  2. I read about 50 books a year. I was at a conference for work one time, and most of my fellow conference attendees were business owners or key employees. We had this one speaker who was a therapist or psychologist or something. Anyway, he was giving away a prize for the one who read the most books in a year. First, he said how many have read more than 5, then more than 10, etc. I was shocked that most people had to sit down at 10. I was the only one left standing at the end.

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    1. Apparently the majority of adults never read a book again after their formal education is over. It’s surprising that there were so many that read no more than ten books. Things change so rapidly in the business world that you have to read just to stay up to speed.

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