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Just Twenty-Five Pages a Day

I follow quite a few blogs about writing, reading and development and one of my favourites is the Farnam Street blog. I don’t do New Year resolutions – mainly because I never keep them and then it depresses me – but on December 31st, Farnam Street published a blog about reading 25 pages a day. The idea is that rather than look at an enormous book (and many current novels are over 500 pages) and be overwhelmed, commit to reading 25 pages a day.


Now I think 25 pages are totally manageable and not too scary but it does add up. If you’ve been watching War and Peace on TV and fancy reading the full unexpurgated story then the 1000 pages might put you off but if you commit to reading 25 pages a day, you’ll be finished in 40 days if you don’t take time out. A couple of months to read a classic is surely worth it? Only you can decide. I have never finished War and Peace despite starting it several times – I can’t keep all the complicated names straight in my head and I’m not that interested in the Napoleonic wars… But there are other large books I am working my way through using this principle.


The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg will take 16 days, The Signal and the Noise by Nate Silver will take 22 days, The Better Angels of Our Nature by Stephen Pinker is 43 days, Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari is 21 days and The Organised Mind by Daniel Levitin is 22 days. That is reading 5 books on my “to be read” list with 500+ pages and I’m only one third through the year. Leaves plenty of time for Patricia Cornwell, JD Robb and James Patterson…


What will you commit to reading this year? Oh, and I haven’t forgotten Middlemarch – its 30 days so I may allocate a month in the Autumn to settle down with some Georg Eliot… mmm pseudonyms and pen names… maybe I’ll cogitate on that for next time…

Here’s the link for Farnam Street – it’s worth a look.



Anne Maguire