How a top reader goes through 52 books a year


For another group of people, there is nothing more relaxing than a New Year’s resolution.

These are the unchanging, people who live happily and see others grind their way through the weeks without cake, without the January wines.

I usually have these spectators but this year, I have always wanted to be proud of the area. In 2022, I want to read more books.

The realization began last week when I came across a phenomenon that seems to be a strange year: a series created by people who managed to read one book a week ago.

“I’ve learned a lot,” he wrote The Sunday Times data reporter, Tom Calver, of the all-year odyssey took over when he met the New Year’s resolution to read 52 books in 2021.

Some made her cry. Some even put him to sleep. As a statistician, he put them all together to have fun, starting with Tom Wolfe Trivial Fire and finish with Anti-Nature, a 1884 book which he found “sad and worthless”.

The Calver list appeared a day after the departure of his Australian counterpart Richard McGregor on Facebook to post 52 authentic reviews of books read last year.

McGregor, a former FT journalist now at Sydney’s Lowy Institute think-tank, has been compiling these lists for some time. As always, the latest was full of articles he found on his page conversion, such as this one from 1,000-plus pages including Stephen Kotkin. History of Stalin quantity.

“What man. She has done well, ”exclaimed Stalin, after being informed of Hitler’s 1934 Night of the Long Knives. “He knows how to do it!”

Stories like this are one reason I admire McGregor and Calver. They are a reminder of the joy, knowledge and values ​​that can be found in reading books.

As United States author and bookseller Ryan Holiday puts it: “Reading is the shortest, most direct way to get the most out of it.”

Vacation sends a monthly list of its approved books to 250,000 mail subscribers and is said to read “about 250” books a year, which puts him in a dangerous category of top readers. Canadian scientist Vaclav Smil reads at 90 books, history, art and history books annually, on top of professional workbooks.

All that matters before Tyler Cowen, a US economist whose annual list of recommended books is one of the most important well-read items on his popular financial blog. He said a good night could pass “five in total books “.

It’s amazing, though not every page is read. But the question is, How do they do it? Where do these avid readers find the time? What do they leave behind?

Everyone no doubt has their own way, but here are some well-known ways to reach readers in a surprising way.

  • Get up early. Cowen wakes up around 6.30am, while McGregor had already boarded an hour.

  • Be ruthless. If you touch a bad book, write it down. Never give up, says Cowen. “It can hurt people.”

  • Read everywhere. Adult readers do this on the bus, sofa, bed and dog walk, through audio books.

  • Skim non-fiction. Fiction requires careful reading, word for word. But it is important to understand, not to read too much that is not false, says a US writer and consultant, Peter Bregman. This can be done primarily by isolating yourself from the content, the introduction, the conclusion, and the individual pages.

  • Read books at once. It is best to have several at a time. Deception is changing them. Do not try to duplicate two major profiles at once.

  • Read differently. Don’t just stick to myths or fiction. Edit authors, times and topics.

  • Read what you do not know. It’s a lot of fun.

  • Read in groups. Do not stick to one of Marie Curie’s books. Read a few of them.

  • Connect. Calver had to put his phone on the plane sometimes. Smil has been single for many years.

  • Be committed. Netflix is ​​possible, but not at the level that most of us are used to.

  • Finally, keep in mind that many readers tend to stick to the textbooks in one book. Stay away from Proust.

pilita.clark@ft.com

Twitter: @ pilitaclark.com





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