Saturday, June 13, 2015

Airplanes | My Reading Experience (1)

I, like many of my fellow members of 21st century society - at least those under the age of 40 who will admit it - have fallen prey to the freedom and distractions that come with constant internet access. Whenever members of the v/blogging community slack off with uploads/posting or even in the case of reading slumps and lack of motivation, the number one culprit is something the internet provides. Of course, we can’t blame it all on the internet because the internet is what gives us all the outlet to rant, ramble, and become slightly more (or less) acceptable members of society in the first place. 

Nevertheless, with age, I have found that it gets harder and harder for me to continuously read books in large chunks of time. Albeit, I’ve read more in the past six months because of the bookish community than the year of 2013 altogether, but it has been ages since I was able to sit down for a good while and just devour a book. Even if I am able to do that, the definition of “reading a book in one sitting” has been redefined for me because of the simple fact that my phone’s notifications get in the way. In the past, I’ve tried reading with it on airplane mode, but alas, I would always take it off within the first 30 minutes because I HAD to check up on something like the release date for a book that reminded me of this one or some other crazy (yet perfectly reasonable, at the time) tangent.

Let’s get onto the reason traveling, more specifically flying, increases my productivity and creativity tenfold. 

There is no internet access. 

This seems like such a simple solution but it greatly enhances my experience living my life in general. I absolutely despise it when adults lecture those around them about addiction to the internet/phones/social media, but that is mostly because I know their points are extremely valid and it has taken its daily toll on me too. When I’m in an airplane, regardless of what I’m doing, it seems that it’s intensified and my focus has magnified. 

Evidence of This 

1. When writing or attempting to outline - I’m more immersed in the words. 
2. When reading, even if I disliked the book, my overall enjoyment of it is better just because I was able to give more of my attention to the text. 
3. When watching TV/movies. On a normal occasion, I’ll blog, scroll through twitter, AND watch TV. The plot of what could have been a rapturing story is put on the back burner and I know I’m not hate only one guilty of this.

Recently, and by “recently” I mean five minutes before I started writing this post, I finished reading Robyn Schneider’s sophomore novel - Extraordinary Means. It was already my 3rd most anticipated book of 2015 - I even caved and bought myself a copy without the certainty that I would like it - but I hadn’t intended to read it the moment I got my hands on it. Nevertheless, reading Robyn’s dedication is what sold me on reading this book.

“For Daniel, who asked which book I recommend he read on an airplane. I finally have an answer: this one.”

Not only is this a killer dedication I wish I had written (you know, if I ever actually get around to finishing my novel), but I feel like Robyn and I had a similar mindset with the whole “reading is made better when you’re on an airplane” tangent my crazy brain is attempting to follow throughout this discussion. 

I’m beginning to think that every realistic fiction/social issue YA novel I read should be read on an airplane just because of how much more I appreciate it. Of course then I run the risk of tears, but that is always a problem when you're a booknerd. And I would completely agree with Robyn, Extraordinary Means is meant to be read as a single sitting, tear-your-heart-to-pieces-and-love-it novel that will have you laughing, crying, and contemplating humanity’s existence all within the span of a page.
I started and finished another book on my journey to Stockholm - transatlantic flights are a pain in the butt (literally) but a win for the reader - and even though I only gave it a 68% because of my issues with the predictable plot/generic main characters, the experience itself was so much fun. Everything, Everything comes out in September of 2015 and is a multi-media novel with little doodles, diagrams, and hilariousness interspersed throughout and I feel like I really got the chance to appreciate all of the detail/care put into it while reading on the airplane.

If I can get enough material, I might even make “My Reading Experience” a sporadic feature on this blog (which most certainly needs a good revival) as I continue reading under odd circumstances.

What environments enhance or decrease your enjoyment of reading?

***I'm not actually dead!!! The hiatus from my blog was unplanned and I honestly have no excuse other than lack of inspiration and motivation. I make no promises, but I hope to get back in the game soon***

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