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  • Writer's pictureVendela Ahlström

Am I even reading for joy anymore?

I feel like I haven’t read for joy in a while now. I’ve been studying loads and looking at words all day, but hardly reading any novels that I’ve picked from my TBR list.

Since last summer I’ve beta read for four people. It has been such a privilege to get to read people’s work and help them improve. I also think beta reading in itself is a useful skill for authors to practise. Having said that it takes me a lot of brain power to beta read. I am hyper alert all the time and pay very close attention to what I’m reading, which, as entertaining as it is, is not relaxing in the least. Also, it takes time because I’m a slow reader and I stop once in a while (at least after every chapter) to take notes. While beta reading I also can’t read anything else, cause all the time I spend on reading I spend on the beta reading.

I’m also studying English this term which is exhausting to say the least. Our last module was linguistic (not a fan) which meant loads of reading about the English language, but nothing for fun.

The next module was literary cultures 1340-1832, which is super interesting. However, the pace is so intense that we don’t have any time to process everything we learn. We’re reading an insane amount of historical literature as well as the historical period in which they were published. We’ve read parts of The Canterbury Tales, Othello, parts of Paradise Lost, Gulliver’s Travels and Frankenstein.

I love reading these kinds of things for school cause it ensures that I read classics, when I’m so prone to picking up fantasy and new releases. Yet, there is something that’s not quite relaxing about reading texts you’ve been told to read. Furthermore, it’s tiring to read texts you constantly have to analyse, even if they’re good.

My next module is linguistics, again (ugh), but I’m hoping that I will manage to get some reading done for pleasure. I’ve opted out of beta reading for a while cause I simply cannot fit it into my schedule, but I hope to be reading something for fun again soon.

What are you reading at the moment?

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