As a writer I’m familiar with the question “why do you write”, but I rarely stop to think about why I read. Now, some of you might think it’s a silly question. Why not read? But perhaps there’s something more to it.
First of all, there are multiple answers:
- to learn
- to be entertained
- to leave the real world behind for a moment
- to see other perspectives
- to travel to places I never could otherwise
- to pass time
and so on, and so on.
When I think about my own reading habits, I rarely read books just to pass time. I prefer reading in large chunks, so reading five minutes here and another ten there while waiting for something else doesn’t work for me. This ties heavily with my usual habit of getting immersed in stories. I enjoy spending time in the book’s world so I don’t want to have to return from it after only a few minutes.
With that said, I do like to read because it can transfer me into other worlds. A little bit of escapism in the middle of it all. Especially with series that I’ve read before it’s nice to return to a familiar world.
Perhaps reading about fictional worlds it so deliberating because the rules change. The books offer us heroes and heroines and epic quests and conflicts and resolutions — something we don’t usually get to see every day in our normal lives.
What’s great about books is the way they can teach us. Even fantasy and sci-fi books that take place in worlds completely different to our own, there’s something we can relate to.
We can learn about people and see from new points of view. I admit I don’t usually choose a book because I think it might teach me something or introduce me to a different perspective, but they tend to happen to anyway.
Leave a comment below and tell me why you read. It’d be interesting to see how many different reasons there can be!