Reading 10,000 Books a Year is Easy—Just Do What I Do!

Listen to audiobooks to mix it up

Audiobooks are the best! They’re a great way to get some reading in while you’re driving, eating, sleeping, or having sex. Okay, that last one was a joke. I haven’t touched my husband, Jeff, since they published The Da Vinci Code. I have too many books to finish!

Refrain from mindless activities

The three biggest time wasters are definitely Netflix, Facebook, and showering. Lucky for me, I can usually get away with only washing my hair once a week. Every other week MAX. Sometimes every other other week if I’ve fallen more than 50 books behind schedule and the panic attacks have started up again.

Cut out all the toxic people in your life

That’s a good place to start. Then cut out everyone else. There’s no need for family when all they do is ask if it’s healthy to read this much. I got tired of explaining this to Jeff’s mother, which is why I send her calls to voicemail. When she tries to outwit me by dropping by unannounced, I hide behind the ficus in the living room until she goes away. You can’t outwit someone who read Ulysses in 20 minutes.

Read on the subway

I’ll wake up early so I can get a good seat, take out my Kindle, and read for hours, from Brooklyn to the Bronx, then back around again. Last week, I read on the subway for 3 days straight. I had to stop when my contact lenses disintegrated.

Take some time off from work

I was recently asked to take a leave of absence from my job, which is fine! Apparently, some people don’t like it when their dental hygienist shows up late and sweaty with ficus leaves in her hair or cleans their teeth while speed reading A Game of Thrones. But the joke is on them because now I have more time to read!

Give your home a little makeover

Marie Kondo says to rid your life of anything that doesn’t bring joy. Obviously, that means anything that isn’t a book. You can hock most of your family’s possessions to get money for more books. You can also rip all the pages out of Infinite Jest, get a little glue, and wallpaper your whole apartment. Now, no matter where you look, you’re always reading. Isn’t that a fun trick?

Juggle a lot of books at once

At any given moment, I’m in the middle of 72 books. That number isn’t going to be right for everyone. For me, 73 is too many, and 71 just isn’t enough. There was a day when I lost all control and started 207 new books. That was the same day Jeff asked for a divorce, and I told him, “You can have the kids, but if you want to divide our books you’ll have to kill me first.” Then I showed him the pistol I keep hidden inside a hollowed out copy of The Help.

Seriously, give audiobooks a try!

They’re a great way to get some reading in while you’re sitting through a tedious custody hearing, running from the police, or serving a quick jail sentence for biting Jeff and putting the judge in a headlock. It’s amazing how much reading you can accomplish when you’ve got a cute little prison library and nothing but time!