I am back again with another Storm in a Teacup post about a social norm I wish didn’t exist.
Well the phrase ‘social norm’ may seem a bit generous. The last SiaT post I wrote was about how I think people should rate DNF books even if they could not finish them. The following post is along the same vein.
Among the unspoken rules of the reading community, one of the most prominent is “finish what you start.” We have all heard this term since we were young whether it be from the media, our teachers, or even our own parents. Having become more involved in the reading community, it is a topic I hear often. Whether it be on Facebook or forums, readers are constantly talking about whether they finish every book they start or if they stop when they just aren’t feeling it.
Now this all seems fine and dandy except for one glaring problem that always pops in these conversations. As with any community, there is a popular opinion adopted by the masses. In this instance, it’s that you are doing something wrong by not finishing almost every books you read. That you are somehow an ‘inferior’ reader for doing so.
As with not rating DNF’d books, I feel this is absolutely ridiculous.
I would feel different about it if I didn’t feel that those who state they do finish every book, regardless of if they like it or not, look down their noses at those who don’t. I am not saying every one does this. But I have noticed that these people seem to have an arrogant tone about them when they mention that they are “powering through” a novel they don’t like.
You know what? Forget all that noise.
I know how these people are because I used to be one of them. There was a time way way back in the day that I thought I was something special because I “powered through” novels I didn’t like.
Let me just say, that I genuinely feel that that isn’t something special. In fact, it’s quite a miserable thing. In reality, I feel like it has nothing to do with determination or discipline.
I feel the same way about all things that make me unhappy: life is too short.
Life is too short to waste on something you don’t enjoy. You shouldn’t have to “power through” something especially if that something is a hobby you chose to do in your spare time for enjoyment. Do you know how many books are published a day? I probably download at least 3 a week and those are just free books.
There are so many great books out there waiting to be read, books that I would actually enjoy rather force myself to finish.
I woke up that one day and decided that life is too short to waste on things that don’t bring
me enjoyment. That includes reading. I read to make myself happy. If what I am reading does not make me happy, then why I am even reading it?
Regardless of if you finish almost every book you read or not, how do you feel on the topic?
Here are some other articles on the subject by other bloggers that I have particularly enjoyed. (Click the images.)