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Things to Say When People 'Hate' Reading

For us readers, it can be difficult talking reasoning with naysayers; here are a few ways in which to make your argument for reading impenetrable.

From books comes films, games and TV series...

When someone drops the bombshell that they 'hate' reading or think reading is 'stupid', this is always the first thing I reply with. Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, Shawshank Redemption and The Picture of Dorian Gray are just some of the many films based on written work. Without these amazing pieces of literature, how will some of the most popular film franchises ever have been created?

Films aren't the only ones inspired by books; think of  Game of Thrones and The Walking Dead. What about a lot of anime titles too ie. Attack on Titan/Shingeki no Kyojin. Gaming is even influenced by books, the Witcher games started off as just 6. Without source material, many industries would suffer greatly and so would we as consumers. Yes these adaptations don't always stay true to the books, but without them there would be an absence of those ideas to begin with. 

The majority of people watch films and TV shows, so throw this one in their face and they will find it very hard to respond negatively.

Is there a better hobby?

Photo by Rathish Gandhi

There are so many hobbies you can have, how many of them are you able to do on the go and for free? You can read on public transport or in a café or even just in bed before sleep, it is a brilliant way to pass the time on long journeys rather than being bored. Plus, you don't have to rely on battery life for these journeys unlike handheld consoles, phones, and music players. You don't even have to fit in specific slots to your schedule for reading, you can fit it into five spare minutes of your day, unlike many hobbies that require a specific place to carry them out.

Libraries allow you to borrow books easily so you can read both new and old books without any price tag, unlike playing an instrument where you must pay for it and for its upkeep. This can compare to a lot of other hobbies too, like fishing and making art.

People may argue that reading has no purpose unlike those other hobbies, but if someone mentions this, just retort with the next point.

Life, Learning and Social Understanding

Reading is a part of everyday life. Signposts, social media, cookbooks, product labels... the list is endless. We need reading for all of those things. Scrolling through Netflix and you don't know what to watch? You look through the guide and pick a show, how can you if you can't read the titles and or the description?

You may hear someone say "Why do we have to read in school?" or "Why aren't you being more productive and social rather than wasting your time with books?"

We need books in order to learn. Works of fact allow us to learn new information and works of fiction allow us to open our minds to complex ideas and worlds. With reading you come across new vocabulary and expand your knowledge, that is why many people who are trying to master a new language try reading in it. 

In school, you read and take apart novels and poems in order to understand people, why something was written in order to give a certain reaction in audiences. It is very important to be able to interpret actions and thoughts in order to get on in society.

In Short...

Books and reading:

  • Influence many industries and media.
  • Is free, reliable (has no battery life unless you're using an e-reader) and a good time consumer if needed.
  • Doesn't have to be bad for the environment with e-readers, libraries and second-hand stores.
  • Is a key part of language acquisition and learning about people.

And Finally...

If this person you're arguing with is still adamant reading is useless, you have two options. You can either bop them over the head with a book and comment how good books are as a weapon, or, you can walk away. 

As a reader would know, "It's hard to win an argument with a smart person, but it's damn near impossible to win an argument with a stupid person." - Bill Murray.

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