The Waning of the ‘University Reading Effect’

I’ve been reading a lot lately. And I’m not talking about the kind of books but the way I am doing so. I’m talking about that feeling of having your imagination build the world around you without the pressure of time.

I put it down to the waning of what I call the ‘university reading effect’.

Now, here’s the thing. I graduated from university with a degree in English Literature and loved it. You can say it made me a better reader, from familiarising myself with works that the old me would not have gone for, to appreciating how every word is written and their place in the wider scope of the literary world, to having a critical opinion about them.

But there are one little thing. Reading the required materials meant less time to read others.

When you have roughly two or three books to read a week (one of which might be a classic that would take more concentration than usual), along with secondary research, downtime is often reserved for things that don’t involve staring at too many pages. So books of personal interest are either saved for term breaks or spread across those rare times of solitude.

Or used for my dissertation so I have a reason to read them. *coughs* Roald Dahl.

Whatever it is now I’ve found that spark and ability to to binge read the way I used to. Only this time I’m noticing details that open up layers of meaning, the symbols and allusions.

It’s probably because now that there’s no reading list, it’s time I made my own.

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