I cannot emphasize enough the importance of reading in the life of a stay-at-home mom. I recently read this guest post by Justin Zoradi on Donald Miller’s blog, which discusses how the most successful adults are those who continue to read and learn after leaving school (either high school or college).
Even though most moms know we should be reading more or spending time bettering ourselves, all moms know the last thing we need is something else to do (or having another reason to feel guilty). So, here are some easy ways to find a good book.
1. Keep a booklist: Keeping a booklist allows you to find a book quicker when you are shopping online, at the library, or browsing through the local bookstore. Buy a small journal or notebook where you can jot down book titles and easily access your list when you find yourself surrounded by books. I keep a booklist notebook in my Evernote account. I can easily access this on my phone or computer, and I can clip and add book ideas when I am browsing the internet during nap time.
2. Get Connected: Using social networking sites like Good Reads, Pinterest, Facebook, and Twitter gives you access to good books. Good Reads is a great social site for book nerds, where you can add books you are currently reading, find books you would like, read reviews, etc. Searches on Pinterest allow you to find books your friends have pinned, giving you a wide selection of choices on your next book run. A simple status like, “Hey, what’s a good book I could read?” on Facebook will generate a ton of responses from your friends. Don’t forget to add the suggestions to your Book List!
3. Ask a Librarian: For some reason, librarians love books, weird, huh? Typically, their first love is NOT shushing people, throwing the evil eye at those pesky teenagers hogging the computers, or voicing concern at your five-year-old who is climbing on top of the tables. Again. Librarians actually love to recommend books. Ask them! You’ll make their day. Also, my library regularly offers a featured section, where they display new reads, books made into movies, or holiday-themed books. Browse through those on your next trip to the library, too (or add to your Book List).
4. Watch Television: I know, strange advice. Morning shows like Today as well as prime time talk shows like The Daily Show and The Colbert Report frequently interview current authors. I’ve found several new books to read from Lester Holt, Jon Stewart, and Stephen Colbert, plus they are, you know, handsome and charming. Not a bad way to get a book recommendation. NPR features books throughout their daily programming as well. Listen to your local public radio station while picking up the kids from school or when you are out shopping (your kids will LOVE it.) I do not recommend trying to add titles to your book list while driving. Check on npr.org later to get the details you need.
5. Go on a Book Browsing Date: Need a cheap date night away from the kids? Head to your local book store, buy some coffee, and browse around the shelves with your hubby. Linger over the featured sections, peruse the aisles together, read sections of the funny passages. It’s fun! (Don’t forget to take your Book List with you).
6. Seek out Book-Loving Friends: Joining a book club or finding a book reading partner works just like finding a workout partner. When you have someone reading with you, you are more apt to find time to read. Plus, having a night out with similarly-minded friends away from the house? Sign me up.
7. Find a Book Reviewer You Like: Though I must admit I have not read many of Stephen King’s books, I trust him when he recommends a book. He’s a writer, and he knows good writing. When I am browsing books, and I see his seal of approval, I am more inclined to buy or check out that particular book. Finding a book reading blog or a podcast about good books can give you an added filter for good material. Then, you have more time to read something you like without having to search too hard for it.
So tell me, how do you find a good book to read?