Tuesday, February 12, 2008

How to Read Less More

Stand to Reason

Get a sense of the book in 10-20 minutes.
Read jacket copy, contents, skim preface & introduction, read conclusion (last 3 pages) and skim the index. Note publisher and date of publication.
Quickly page through the entire book at the rate of 2-3 seconds per page.
Determine if you want to read the book more thoroughly, give it away, or file it for future reference.

Skim entire book at a slower rate (4-10 seconds per page), breaking the book in as you go.
Look for structure, outline, key facts and concepts.
Write a quick summary for the book in pencil on title page.

Preview each chapter again before you read it to get the structure (4-10 seconds per page).
Read every word at the fastest comfortable speed using a pointer so you don’t wander, hesitate, regress, or lose your place. Mark the margin, but don’t underline the text.
Write a 1-4 sentence summary in pencil at the beginning of the chapter. This serves as a quick overview of the content of the chapter.
Sketch a quick outline or recall pattern.

Post-View Immediately
Re-read the chapter quickly, focusing on marked sections, interacting with the text.
Refine your 1-4 sentence summary at the beginning of the chapter, if necessary.
Review at regular intervals, looking over recall patterns and summary material.

Read my entire article @ Solid Ground.

Just Do It
Now it’s time for action. You have the plan. Here are six books I recommend you read this year and master using this simple plan to read less more.

And here's a suggestion an emailer passed on to us. Challenge yourself and have a salutory effect on others by finding like-minded people and start a book club. Choose a book the group agrees on or take turns picking a book. You might being with one of my recommendations. Use the guidelines for effective reading, and discuss the book with a group. This is a great way to exercise your mind. And you'll master each book you read this way.

Here are my suggestions for the six books you master this year. I've chosen them because they cover a variety of topics to build your knowledge, wisdom, and character. And I consider each a quintessential source of its kind.

Thinking about God--Greg Ganssle
Mere Christianity--C.S. Lewis
Serious Times--James Emory White
In But Not Of--Hugh Hewitt
The Lost Virtue of Happiness--J.P Moreland & Klaus Issler
He Is There and He Is Not Silent--Francis Schaeffer (available as an individual work, or as part of the trilogy)

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