Monday, June 23, 2014

7 Tips To Make Anyone Interested In Reading

7 Tips To Make Anyone Interested In Reading

How many times have we thought, I don't understand why (insert name here) doesn't like to read? At first, I had found it confusing too, but then I saw that quotation above. Whoever said that speaks with the tongue of an angel, because I have transformed some friends of mine who used to be full pledged book haters into book nerds. They just need to find their favorite books. Here are some tips to pull the hidden book nerd out of everyone. 

1. Show Them Your Bookshelves 

Bookshelves have that hypnotizing effect on everyone, because it shows our personalities. Our friends like us because of our personalities, and trust me your bookshelf can snag your friend too if you give it a little push.  

I know our books are very precious, but let your friend explore your bookshelf. Answer his questions or comment on what catches his eyes. Is he eyeing Eragon? Steelheart? or maybe Across The Universe? Then give him some fantasy/sci-fi recommendations. If he grabs a book, comment on how you like it, but give more words on how he will like it. Mention how it is similar to his favorite movie or show (if and only if the book is similar). And if you trust them enough, let them borrow your books; they can't be binge book buyers like us instantly, so don't be like "buy your own copy if you want to read that." You just put all your efforts to the drain if you say that. You might also end up with an angry friend and a discouraged almost book nerd.   

2. Take Them To The Bookstore / Library 

I have a friend who loves cosmetics. She loves taking me to Sephora, Mac, and other cosmetic stores. She talks what is a good bronzer for my skin and what kind of concealer I should use. The next thing I know I found myself interested in cosmetics. The same works for books.

Instead of going to the bookstore or library alone or with book nerds, take a friend. I know it is not an easy task but try saying "hangout in the library" instead of "go to the library" for it sounds more inviting and friendly. When inside the library or bookstore, don't walk straight to your favorite section. It will make your friend unwelcome. Nudge him with a, "let's go to the YA section. They have a book by Alex London called Proxy. I think you're gonna like that one. It's full of action like that show you watch every tuesday." This will welcome them and make them curious. And curiosity will make a spark to create a fire of love for books. 

And while browsing in the library/bookstore, apply what you've learned from tip #1. It's like a car, let them hold the steering wheel by letting them browse on their own, but guide them. Always, always, always as in always tell them how they will like the book. Don't drown them with your fandomness by squealing like a hyena when they ask you about Eleanor And Park

Note: The bookstore is perfect to get chapter samplers. And the library is the place to borrow books, especially if they are not ready to buy their own books yet. 

3. Start With MG (Middle Grade) Books 

There are 2 reasons why non-readers are repelled to the idea of reading: 
  1. They think it's hard to read and their imaginations don't work when it comes to books. 
  2. Reading takes a lot of time. 
Those are the main reasons why it is better to start with MG books. They are written to make anyone's imagination burst with colors. Not only that, the average length of MG books is 120pgs - 250pgs. Even the laziest reader can finish that book within 2 to 3 days. And if they say that it is insulting to read books for children, tell them how Harry Potter is loved by people of different ages. And if you love MG books, tell them that and why. If the spark of your love towards books is an MG book, inspire your friend by telling your story. Remember you can only be too young for a specific genre (erotic, romance, etc.), but you will never be too old to read books for children.

4. Read With Your Friend 

From the first 3 tips, I always say that recommend a book to your friend, but discovering a new favorite novel and author with him can be one of the most memorable events of your friendship. It might be the hardest tip, but I always use this, and it is the most effective method. Here are some ways to make it work: 
  1. When in the bookstore or library, select a book that you think both of you will love. It is even better if you will make your friend choose, or choose a book from an author that you know will not disappoint the both of you. If you are in a bookstore, don't be afraid to ask a bookseller for recommendations. Just don't forget to mention that your friend is a bookworm in training. 
  2. Or consider challenging yourselves; put a long deadline to finish the book, whoever fails to finish the book within the given deadline, will have a small punishment like treat the person who finish the book with lunch or coffee. If your friend is competitive, this is a good idea.   
Note: If he doesn't like the book you're reading, just let him know that people have different opinions. Don't contradict him if you like the book, ride with his opinions.

5. Treat Characters Like They Are Real By Asking For Updates 

We already know that books are magical and portals to other worlds. Your non-reader friend might have failed to see this that is why he is not into reading yet. There is a way to show him the wonders of reading. Ask updates like the characters are real. For example, you decide to read Eragon by sir Christoper Paolini

You: Hey, how's Eragon going? Any new adventures? 
Friend: Eragon just learn how to ride Saphira. 
You: That is dope, man. Have you met the leader of the freedom fighters? 
Friend: Not yet. 
You: I think you'll like him. He's interesting. 

As you see in that conversation, by starting to ask like Eragon is your next door neighbor, you open the door to the fantasy world. And your friend will start to read books that way that you do. In the conversation above, we even asked if our friend has "met" the leader of the freedom fighters. Keep treating characters like they are real. At first, your friend will think it's weird, but as time goes on, he'll follow your steps without even knowing it. 

6. Always Mention The Book Is Better Than The Movie

It is already a fact that Books Are Better Than Movies. Our non-readers friends do not know that yet. They believe that seeing the movie is the same as reading the book or, worse, much better than the book.

A way to fix it is to give them subtle clues. Because if you plan on screaming at their face that the movie will never be as perfect as the book, consider your efforts wasted. The better approach is if your drop things from the book that is not in the movie. For example, the movie The Fault In Our Stars is undoubtedly a movie full of class and finesse. However, did they mention why it is called The Fault In Our Stars? Only the book can answer that. 

Whining that the movie is not as faithful as the book will just make you an annoying brat in front of your friend. Try this better approach: 

Friend: That Divergent movie is awesome. 
You: The dauntless faction is full of backstabbers. My favorite part from the book is when someone made a cowardly move to Edward in the dark. That scene is kick-ass. 
Friend: I don't remember that in the movie. 
You: It's not in the movie. It's in the book. I was hoping they'd show it, because that would make you grip to your seat like crazy. 
Friend: Tell me what happened. 
You: Read it. You'll love it. It's a different feeling if you experience it from the page. Trust me, man, that scene will make you mad that it is not in the movie. 

With that approach, that will make your friend curious without being a pushy nerd. Remember, curiosity will create that spark. 
"One Spark Will Start A Fire." 

7. Invite Your Friend To Book Signings or Launch Parties 
Remember that band that you don't really like but now you listen to their songs like it's a religion because your friends took you to their live performance? 
You used to hate baseball with passion, but after watching it live with your dad, you see how beautiful it is. The same work for books. 

A party is a party. Take your friend, to a book launching of your favorite author. The experience of meeting a real life famous author will start a spark in their hearts. The event might be full of bookworms, but remember, passion is contagious. 

The stereotype too that we, bookworms, do not have social lives will be broken with our parties. I know there is a typical chapter reading, but our parties contain free food, free drinks, and lots and lots of freebies. 

Not all bookworms wear thick braces and framed glasses. There is a lot of attractive bookworms during signings and launch parties. And they know how to socialite. So invite them even if they don't know who the authors who are going to be in the event. After they enjoy the event, they will join you next time without you asking them. And the good side is he will read the book for the event, because he enjoys the company of people on the event. 

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