Hey, y’all, today, I have a confession to make: I’m afraid of big books. Like, very afraid. So much so that I do not pick them up.
Three days ago, my favorite YouTuber, Ariel Bissett uploaded a video in which she talked about her fear of reading big books and what she’s gonna do about it in 2020. In fact, she decided to read six tomes that she’s been afraid to pick up and created the hashtag #endingbigbookfear on Instagram for people to join her in ending their fear. I’m gonna link her video in the post so you can watch it and see if you wanna read big books with her. I had actually been wanting to talk about my fear of reading massive books for a while and I’ve been extremely lazy, so I didn’t pen down this post until now. But I guess now is the time!
I don’t know if any of you have noticed, but I do not review “big” books on my blog because I do not read them. So, let’s talk about what’s a “big book” for me.
I’m not sure how many of you have read IT by Stephen King, but I’m guessing most of us would think it’s a pretty big one. Books over 1000 pages are big. However, for me, books over 350 pages are kinda-big if they are not easy to read. I’m the person who sometimes gets intimidated by a two-hundred-page book, but I know that I read so many books that are over 350 and 400 pages, but I’m sometimes worried I won’t enjoy them or I’ll stop reading them halfway. So, most of my reads that are longer than 350 pages belong to the genres I love, which does not *usually* include fantasy or dystopia or sci-fi or speculative fiction. I do (want to) read these genres, but most of these books that I see going around on WordPress are pretty massive, and I always chicken out before I can buy or borrow a copy.
So, for me, a big book is over 350-400 pages. I almost never pick up a book that’s more than 500 pages anymore. And I don’t think I’ve ever read any that are 800 or 900 pages. So much as thinking about reading them is hard and off-putting. I mean, I’m always like, take them away from me.
So, I looked for the books I’ve reviewed in the last few months to see how many of these books were over 400 pages and what genres they belonged to, and I found something very interesting.
In the year 2019, the biggest book I had read had 582 pages…so, almost 600. It was After by Anna Todd. It was simple and interesting, to be honest, and I was able to finish it in 3 days even though I wanted to throw it off after some time as it became torturous. It made me so angry! My shortest book had 60(ish) pages, and it was Dear Ijeawele by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. An amazing, amazing book. Pick it up y’all.
In the year 2018, the biggest book that I had read had 756 pages. It was Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer. My shortest book was Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson, which had 202 pages. A powerful one.
Also, a thing worth noticing is, I had read 0 graphic novels, 0 poetry books, 0 novellas, and 0 short stories in 2018. I did read quite a few graphic novels and short stories in 2019 though. I hadn’t gotten introduced to graphic novels and poetry yet, and I didn’t really feel like reading them anyway because I was just reading for myself, and not to eventually write and post a review of the book.
So, what I’m trying to say is, I used to read some giant books in 2018 and I didn’t entirely stop reading them in 2019…I guess I just reduced the number of big books I was reading and increased the number of books I was reading, but it’s not really important right now.
As you’ve already figured by now, I wasn’t always afraid to read big books.
I know that a lot of you love reading big books and aren’t afraid of reading them. I know that some of you feel blessed to have a book big enough to satisfy you. I can actually relate to that.
When I had finished reading Twilight for the first time, I was really excited to read New Moon, Eclipse and Breaking Dawn. I devoured these books in only a few days. I went to Wattpad and read the fanfics. I watched the movies. I reread the books. So, you guys know how obsessed I was. And they were all big books.
In fact, I used to be super crazy about romance duologies and trilogies and I used to buy all of the books at once instead of going to the bookstore or Amazon to buy the rest after finishing the first one.
So, I wasn’t always scared of big books. In fact, I was excited to read them and spend time reading them.
Then why am I afraid of reading them now? I guess it has to do something with it:
✨ I do not read every book that I’m comfortable with. I read out of my comfort zone now. I read genres I do not find easy to read and books I do not find compelling enough. So…
✨ I feel that I’d get bored while reading a book in a genre I’m not naturally inclined towards. So, I do not pick them up. However, if a book is small, I feel like giving it a shot.
✨ I feel the pressure to finish reading a book in less than ten days because I write reviews for them on my blog. So, when I’m reading a massive book, I pick up a graphic novel with it even if I’m not interested in it. Actually, I’ve realized that I pick up poetry, graphic novels, and novellas just because I need content to review on my blog. And that’s why I almost never pick up a big book because I’ll need to read something else along with it, and I do not want to do that!
✨ I worry that I’ll stop halfway and that I’ll worry about the page numbers. My attention doesn’t last very long. So, I never give them a try because it will be very stressful.
✨ I’m a sucker for new stories and I love watching movies, so I want to know a story but I’m so worried about not being able to finish an 800-page book that I instead watch the movie if there’s one. So, instead of spending 12-15 hours– we’re talking about big books here, remember?– of my life on a story, I’d rather spend 3 hours on the same story, even if it’s a different medium. Hehe, it just got a bit controversial, but I just want to tell you all my reasons for being afraid of books like IT and Breaking Dawn and of reading series that have 5-7 books.
So, Ariel Bissett devised a plan to overcome this fear of reading books that are over 500 pages and created a hashtag. I guess I should do something too? I’m planning to read at least three books this year that I’m a bit afraid of…books that are over 450 pages. I do not want to tackle anything that’s a thousand pages long, because I’ll end up not finishing it right now. I only want to read these books in my favorite genres because I know I won’t be able to read them if I decided to read something that I’m not interested in or something that’s written in a language that’s a tad difficult to understand. I do not know which books these are gonna be. I just know that they’ll be interesting and something I expect to enjoy a little because I need to be able to get rid of my fear.
I guess that’s about it for now. I think I’m gonna talk about why I’m a bit afraid of starting series sometime soon and how I plan to start some series this year, but I’ll talk about it later.