I am always on the look out for more great ideas on how to read better and faster. This month, I found such advice and am pleased to share it with you. It comes from a very smart comedian Jay Arthur , also known as the KnowWare Man.

“I know many people who think they don’t have the time or money to read books. I read over 100 each year, but I only buy about 10% of them. So here are some tips to ingest what one author calls ‘a complete thought meal:’

  1. When I hear someone mention a good book, I write down the title and author’s name and then order it online through the LOCAL LIBRARY SYSTEM. Most books are 10% meat and 90% feathers. I want to see if it’s any good before I consider buying it.
  2. Flip through the book. Is it convenient for the reader? Is it all text without any graphics that summarize the key thoughts? Does the author use italics to highlight key words and phrases in otherwise scary blocks of text? Is the book jargon-free or polysyllabic?
  3. If the book passes most of these tests, jump in and start reading anywhere. Skim around focusing on the first sentences of paragraphs. You don’t have to read a book from start to finish unless it’s a novel.
  4. If the book is just an idea snack, then take the highlights and move on. If it’s a rich, engaging idea feast, then purchase it online and buy a new or used copy that you can mark up, highlight, and annotate.
  5. When you go to the library to pick up a book you’ve ordered, look at the catalog number of the book and wander back into the racks. Scan the titles looking for interesting ones.
  6. Never judge a book by its title. I recently found a book called “It’s Alive” about applying the science of biology to business management. Cool ideas hidden behind an obscure title.”

I hope Jay’s ideas “hit home” for you and you feel a little more empowered to read only that is of value to you, q-u-i-c-k-e-r!

Jay Arthur, the KnowWare Man, works with companies that want to plug the leaks in their cash flow and people who want to master the mysteries of the mind. He is the coauthor of Your Seventh Sense– How to Think Like a Comedian! You can sign up for his free comedy course here.


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