Life is too short to read bad books.
I’m sure we’ve all heard that one before. The thing is, it’s true. Life is too short to read bad books. If you’re not feeling the book, just put it down. You don’t need to finish it, and you definitely don’t need to feel bad when you DNF books.
There are so many great books in the world — why waste time on one that doesn’t interest you?
I ask this question because I know that the struggle to DNF books is real, especially as a book reviewer. In the past, I’ve always agonized over shoving a book to the side when it wasn’t working for me. While this isn’t a constant struggle nowadays, I’m facing that inner conflict again. So here I am writing this to convince myself?
It’s okay to feel conflicted about putting a book down. Part of me wants to finish it because I don’t want it to be a “waste” of my time. But the other part of me knows that if I’m not enjoying it, then it’s not worth wasting any more of my time, and I should move on to something else.
And that’s the thing! If you’re not enjoying a book, it’s not worth your time. It doesn’t matter if it’s a bestseller or not; if you’re not into it, it’s just not meant to be.
But also, I think most of that agonizing comes from peer pressure and worrying about what other people think. For example, when you write book reviews and you’ve mentioned you DNF’d a book, you and give valid reasons why you couldn’t get through it, you’ll probably have some snooty comment on Goodreads in response be like, “Well, your review is worth sh*t, if you would have finished the book you’d know it’s gold.”
Yeah, know what? F*ck that noise.
I get a little sad when I see someone DNF my favs like Dune or Dark Matter, and I may get a little irritated when they hate the very things I love, but I’m not going to comment and be a bully about it. We all have our opinions and not everyone needs to agree with me or vice versa.
We DNF books for a reason. It could be clunky prose, one-dimensional characters, plot holes, etc. If we have to force ourselves to read the dang thing, it’s not worth our time, and our time is valuable.
In the grand scheme of things, whether or not we finish a book isn’t going to make or break us.
So if you’re struggling to finish a book, there’s no reason for you to push through. That book is just not doing it for you, and that’s an excellent reason just to put it down. It’s okay!
Stop worrying about what others might think and start worrying about what makes you happy. And if that means not finishing a book, then so be it.
There’s no shame in DNF-ing a book! In fact, I would say it’s a sign of intelligence and good taste. So the next time you find yourself struggling to get through a book, just remember: it’s okay to DNF a book.
Did I mention it’s okay to DNF books? haha
I wrote this to remind myself and drill it into my head, but I thought at least one other person might need to hear it, so if you’re feeling like putting a book down, go ahead and do it, because, in the end, it doesn’t really matter.
I hope you all read what you love this weekend, and continue to read what you love this week 🙂
Tell me, what are your thoughts on DNFing books?