Most of us read books for enjoyment and learning. The fact is, the goal of reading is essentially different for everybody at any given time.
It is for this reason that the approach that you may find the most productive for reading may not always work out for others.
Knowing this simple fact is important because it puts things into context.
For example, some people may take weeks to read a single book while others may take only a couple of days.
This then brings about questions around time spent on reading.
This post will therefore discuss whether it’s realistic to read a book in a day because it is a question that people repeatedly ask me.
With that said, is it realistic to read a book a day?
It is possible to read a book a day. Even more so for shorter books. Longer books can usually take more than a day to finish….but it all depends on the reader.
A skilled reader can easily read a book a day while an unskilled reader may find it difficult especially if the book is long.
There are various other things that contribute to this which is why it’s important to address them in this post.
Factors to consider with reading a book a day
To determining whether it is realistic to read a book in a day, I had to take a lot of things into consideration in order to come up with a full proof conclusion.
These considerations can pretty much be summed up into the four things which are; the reader, the length of the book, the kind of book being read and the ability of the reader to comprehend what is being read.
so let’s dig into each of these…
One thing that determines whether it’s realistic to read a book a day, is the kind of reader in question.
The simple fact is, reading is a skill that has to be practiced just like any other skill.
Not everyone out there is a reader or a skilled one at that…
So while it may be easy for some to read a book within a day and go on to read another one the next day…. it may be utterly impossible for others.
Therefore, depending on the skill set of the reader, reading a book a day may be realistic or simply unrealistic.
Skilled readers will have a lot in their arsenal e.g. speed reading, skim reading, lengthy concentration and so on..
These skills can make it easy for the skilled reader to plow through material with ease and speed.
The unskilled reader on the other hand would have a challenge.
Length of the book
Now that we’ve discussed the skill set of the reader. We also have to consider the length of the books to be read.
Depending on how the long book or books are, it may be realistic to read one each day or not.
For example, reading an 800 paged book like moby dick in one day would certainly be a challenge.
There would be too many pages to go through and most people would give up before they even got half way through.
A reasonably sized book however may be easier to work with and can certainly be read in a day.
For example, a book with 50 to 200 pages can be read in a day if one is up to the task.
This is atleast something realistically possible.
The kind of the book
Now that we’ve gone through both the reader and the length of the book to be read, we can now go to the kind of books to be read.
Books are different and the contents in them are different.
Depending on the kind of content in the book, it may be easy to read in a day or impossible to do this.
For example, a book on complex mathematics would certainly not be an easy book to read for most people which is why it may take longer than a day to get through such material.
Therefore this has to be put into consideration if you’re to read a series of books over a period of days….Reading a book a day.
Which brings me to my next point.
Ability to comprehend
As we can tell from the previous point. The complexity of the book or books to be read is a huge determinant in assessing whether it is actually realistic to read a book a day.
Another issue that is crucial and related to this is the ability of the reader to comprehend what is being read.
A person that may find it difficult to comprehend material will obviously take longer to read and finish a book.
The reason is simple, they have to take more time with the material in order to understand it and make sense of it.
For a person that can easily comprehend even the most complex material…Reading a book in a day can be easily achieved.
Which basically takes me to back to the ability of the reader and their overall skill set as I discussed earlier.
The reader is always the key when it comes to how fast or how quickly a book can be read.
How to easily read a book fast
There are various things that you have to do in order to get through a book faster. I feel it is important to discuss these things because they can help you in your own development as a reader.
With that said let’s get into some tips that can help you read a book faster.
Choose the right book
Pick your battles wisely. Not all books are the same.
If you’re looking to read material ensure that you pick the right book.
Not all books are meant to be read quickly, some are meant to be digested slowly by the reader. This is because of the material being conveyed.
Therefore, my advice is always to choose the right book first…
If you don’t have a say in the choice of book then you have to atleast figure out what book you’re reading and what kind of book it is.
If it is a complex book then you know some time has to be spent on reading and consuming it.
On the other hand, a simple book can be easily read.
Use speed reading techniques
Good speed reading techniques can help you get through a book faster.
For example, skim reading is a good way to go through a book and understand what it’s all about so you can then start to read it knowing the general ideas or idea that the author wishes to convey.
Skim reading is a good practice to get a feel of the book.
Another speed reading technique that you can employ is using your eyes more effectively to read sentences in less time than you normally would.
Some people also use rulers to read sentence by sentence which is said to be a quick way to read a book.
Try it out.
Time is of the essence
Use time to your advantage and divide it accordingly.
Allocating time to spend reading will help you in determining how much of the day you’ll delegate to reading.
Dividing how much time you have by the number of pages will help you figure out how much you’ll read in every sitting.
Skim reading is an effective way to read a book quickly.
With skim reading you basically read and skillfully direct your eyes on important words.
Skim reading can also be compared to scanning through pages.
If used correctly skim reading can help you get through words quicker.
Don’t rush, start out slow
One of the reasons why most people never develop as readers is because they try to rush the process.
Nobody is born the perfect reader which means you have to harness your reading abilities.
When you first start out, you’ll take more time to get through pages. This should not discourage you.
It is part of the process and necessary for your development.
So take time to learn how to read fast by beginning slow and then levelling up to quicker paces.
Note taking can also help you read material faster.
Every page in a book has key points that it tries to communicate to the reader.
The reader has to therefore take note of these points quickly.
Once you get the general idea that the page in a book is trying to communicate. You can skim read the rest of the text and then move on to the next page.
This way you won’t spend too much time on any one page.