Friday, June 22, 2012

Getting my reading groove back

There are a few things that can uplift my mood at any given time: chocolates, music, my workouts, shopping, writing and ofcourse reading. To take my mind away from everything, especially the virus that visited my laptop and kidnapped my system files and demanded a ransom of a quick format, I plunged wholeheartedly into reading. Nothing can take my mind away from the problems that life throws in my way other than an absorbing story.

Needless to say I made heavy inroads into my TBR pile. I read around 7 books in less than a month, two were MG fiction books, the rest were novels.  Not just getting my reading groove back, the books also taught me several lessons.

Secrets and Lies by Jaishree Misra, taught me about balancing 5 POV’s (third person narrative), all the 5 characters were women. The book’s past and present movement was a refreshing way of updating a reader to all the backstory. And the subtle hints the author had dropped throughout the story helped me accept the ending in a positive way as I had already  kind of anticipated it. Nothing takes a reader out of a story as much as an unexpected and completely out of the way ending.

The Edge of Desire by Tuhin Sinha, a political fiction narrated in the first person POV was another book that had me glued to the pages. The book had as few descriptions as possible. Infact, if I remember right, I don’t think the author even described his heroine (her looks).  Less descriptions helped the story move forward quickly.

Kiss and Tell  by Nistula Hebbar, a book her publishers are pitching as metro reads (it even has a picture of an autorickshaw on the back cover) was another  book that had me completely hooked. It familiarized me with a territory that was alien to me: the female protagonist was a political correspondent of a newspaper. I enjoyed getting to know the happenings in the corridors of power.

Reading a MG fiction from an animal POV was truly enjoyable. I got to know what dogs really think. Each of the books in its small way taught me about creating stories that readers enjoy. And the best thing was that while reading, I had not just removed my writer’s hat, I had even locked it in the cupboard. That way I enjoyed each book like a true reader.

 How do you all read books? Do you read books like writers (analyzing and studying the techniques of writing) or do you read like readers ( getting completely immersed in the story and characters).

P.S. For the poetry lovers, my dear friend and blog buddy Wendy Lu  at The Red Angel is hosting The Roarin Twenties  Poetry Blogfest ( June 22nd to 24th) to celebrate her 20th birthday. Though, I am not participating (my poetry really is pathetic and I don’t want to lose you all) I am going to enjoy reading the entries. I urge the poetry lovers to join the blogfest.


  1. Now my turn for being envious that you could read so much!It is always great to catch up on reading on different subjects and agree with you that it is so relaxing:)

  2. I find it hard to switch off my writer brain when I read, but some books are so good they switch off my inner editor for me! :)

  3. I know what Lynda means. The smallest errors can really yank me out of the story I'm reading.

    Sad thing is, I know that I'm not a perfect writer either, but my brain won't be convinced.

  4. I always read as a learner and a seeker.....wish I could read some more....newspaper and magazines are all I am reading right now.

  5. I just finished two books and need to post some reviews on Goodreads. And I can't help but read like a writer now.

  6. I find it impossible not to read like a writer, which does help me spot that good stories don't necessarily follow the 'rules' as closely as you migh think. Keep things moving and happening seems far more important.

    Moody Writing
    The Funnily Enough

  7. Hi friends, this is the first time I read like a reader. Earlier, whenever I would read, I would analyze everything and see if I could have said or written differently.

    This new phase of reading like a reader is making me read the books at a superhuman speed. Its making me less critical of the books I read. I am just enjoying the stories.

  8. I'm tackling my TBR pile, too--and enjoying it:-) There's something about summer reading, I think, that helps us writers relax and gear up for the next writing (and revising) marathon.

    Was sorry to hear your computer was hit by a virus. That's never fun.

    Happy reading.

  9. Thanks for stopping by and supporting me today! It was much appreciated!

  10. read like the reader... i do read but now i will also read like the reader , that is what reader call on reading between the lines, with critical thinking and so on...but as of now i am loving your post which always have something to enrich me on...thanks Man

  11. Interestingly (to me at any rate) your six uplifting activities include my four - I pass on working out and shopping! Nice post.

  12. I'm scared to compile a TBR list... it would be too long! So I'm just trying to read... one book at a time... whatever I get my hands on first...
    Reading across genres is something I'm going to do - very soon!

  13. I just got done reading this amazzing book about a family in Afghanistan .."Dressmaker of Khair Khana", read it if you get a chance:)

  14. Mostly I get immersed in the story and characters, but that doesn't mean I don't notice things about these aspects or about the writing that I can use in my own stuff. :)

  15. I read once that a writer should read like a writer and write like a reader. But read like a reader works nicely, too. While recovering from foot surgery, I have a reading feast
    Ined up, and more than anything, I want to be plunged into the world os story.

  16. Every thing happens for a reason and in your case(PC break down) it happened for the best, I will hunt for these books and enjoy them, Thank you.

  17. I do a little of both when I read. I love an enjoyable story that I can nestle into, but I also watch how the author handles scenes and characters and whatnot. In short, I just love to read!

  18. I'm both entertained and educated when I read novels.

    I learn more about POV and genres that I don't write in the more I read. It makes me want to try different things.

  19. I definitely read like a writer, Rachna. But we cannot help that. When I see errors, it draws me completely out of the story. And I do see them. I also try to learn from those mistakes. I've always loved to read. And to write, we MUST read! How have you been, my friend? *waving*

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  21. Power to you for doing all that reading! I find that if I get some good writing and reading into my day it's all sunshine from there:)

  22. I'm so glad you are reading!
    I totally read like a reader--it's so much fun to be transported into the world of story.