Ok. Let’s not be cocky here. This is not about me telling people to read more.
You can do what you like, for all I care.
What this is about, however, is my own reading journey, overcoming the self-judgement of not being “well-read” and embracing books in my own way.
I used to love reading books when I was little, in a very stereotypical “build-a-fort and-hide-with-your-books-for-days” kind of way. I read what interested me which varied more than my exes excuses for his behaviour.
The poison is in the “should“.
Despite a uni degree, I am not particularly well-educated, there are massive leaps in the things I “should know” and I have been playing catch up for most of my adult life.
There seems to be a particular focus on things we should do, should listen to, should watch and should read. Sidenote: one of my biggest pet peeves are people who think they know “good music” (… like fuck right off!). Good music is what sparks joy. Periodt.
Just like I listen to my Sugarbabes album on repeat, my reading drive is fuelled by my interests. I can get through the driest texts if it’s a topic I care about and, equally, take years for the book by the “newest and most phenomenal writer”. The “should” can’t determine my genuine interest and only by shaking it off, I am able to truly enjoy the pleasures of reading.