So many books, so little time. – Frank Zappa

In the generation of 140 characters and lists as articles, reading books is a toughie. Not only because of how frail our attention span has become but also because of the time it takes to read something with 311, 596 words. Yes, that’s the number of words in the latest novel I just finished reading – The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand.

It took me about 4 months to finish that beast. Weird since it took me only 2 days to finish reading 257,045 words in Harry Potter and the Order of Phoenix.

But during that entire 4 months I often found myself with the biggest case of FOMO (fear of missing out). I would check to see how many pages were still left to read; each time feeling the disappointment through my veins. Skipping some of the boring paragraphs that would describe a particular thing using way too many words than necessary. Coming across summer reading lists on social media and feeling “so many books, so little time.”

This “read a lot and read everything” has become quite a trend these days. Zuckerberg launching his A Year of Books has already read 20 books. That’s 1 book every 2 weeks! Every “career” podcast you listen to talks about reading a lot and reading a variety of books. From Bill Gates and Oprah to The Social (Canadian TV show) talks about the books they read. But all this attention is leaving everybody (at least me) feel like there’s way too much to conquer.

So how can we deal with this FOMO? Screw the world I say!

I stopped listening to anything that would hint of talking about how many books they have read. Or which books I should be reading. I’ve already got a reading wish list so I’ve blocked off any social media post or podcast related to books. My laser vision now only looks at the pages of the book I’m reading and my wish list when I’m looking for the next read.

That’s how I’m keeping my FOMO at bay and the joy for reading alive. How about you?

This post is written for WordPress’ Writing 101 topic: hook ’em with a quote.


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