#1 Posted by Aegon (5703 posts) -

If so:

  1. What was your method?
  2. Was it successful?
  3. What was your initial speed and your final speed (e.g. pages / hour)
  4. Were you able to retain just as much info with the higher speed?
  5. Do you enjoy reading just as much or more at a higher speed?

I don't think I'm a very quick reader. It would save so much time if I could make myself read a ton faster while still enjoying what I'm reading and not getting a headache.

#2 Edited by SaturdayNightSpecials (2416 posts) -

No, I already read like the Devil so there's no need.

"Speed reading" is a crock anyway. The way to absorb written info faster is to read a lot, for long stretches at a time, and just get fast at reading naturally.

#3 Posted by HatKing (6025 posts) -

Come from a family with some learning/mental disorders. A lot of teachers thought I may have been dyslexic when I was young. By the time I was in high school I was testing out of high level English courses. That being said, reading speed has never been a concern of mine. Retention and comprehension are far more valuable to me, and what I've spent my entire life working on. If it takes me an extra couple hours to read a novel, but I'm able to analyse it more thoroughly without rereading large chunks, then I'm happy. Of course, the more I read I suppose the quicker I've become at it, naturally. There are devices your mind employs. You see words as objects, sums of their letters, and often you understand without actually putting them together. I think you develop these tools the more you read.

Example: "I cnduo't bvleiee taht I culod aulaclty uesdtannrd waht I was rdnaieg. Unisg the icndeblire pweor of the hmuan mnid, aocdcrnig to rseecrah at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it dseno't mttaer in waht oderr the lterets in a wrod are, the olny irpoamtnt tihng is taht the frsit and lsat ltteer be in the rhgit pclae. The rset can be a taotl mses and you can sitll raed it whoutit a pboerlm. Tihs is bucseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey ltteer by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe. Aaznmig, huh? Yaeh and I awlyas tghhuot slelinpg was ipmorantt! See if yuor fdreins can raed tihs too."

#4 Edited by xaLieNxGrEyx (2605 posts) -

`.1. I can read pretty quickly, I believe I acquired the skill from from grinding through text heavy RPG's for subsequent playthroughs.

2. I can more or less read text in games as fast as the game will allow it to be displayed on screen with ease, and fly through text in a book quickly.

3. I'm not sure, but I could probably read two pages in an average book in 15 - 25 seconds.

4. I don't retain 100% of the information no.

5. I don't try reading as fast as possible when trying to enjoy or retain information.

#5 Edited by Beforet (2927 posts) -

Eh, sometimes. I have looked up "increase speed while retaining comprehension!" guides before. Most of the stuff I consider worth it is just stuff about training yourself to use your peripheral vision as well, since you can get a whole line of text in just with that. Otherwise, I mostly don't bother. Way I see it, only way to get better at reading is to read, and I don't read enough to get the practice in.

#7 Edited by ChrisTaran (1644 posts) -

I have not, but I only like reading at one speed. Speaking speed. Anything faster and I have a hard time parsing what I'm reading.

#8 Posted by Gaff (1814 posts) -

I turn pages / scroll through text really quickly and that has less to do with my reading speed and more with experience, I guess?

Reading a lot will train you in recognizing what the "important" information is and what is the "fluff". Cut off the fat, read and remember the important bits, and voila: you'll be "reading" faster in no time.

Of course, when you're actually trying to enjoy the writing, you can always rewind and reread a particularly fun / moving / witty passage again.

#9 Posted by Aegon (5703 posts) -

I have not, but I only like reading at one speed. Speaking speed. Anything faster and I have a hard time parsing what I'm reading.

Yeah, if a character in a book speaks at a certain speed with certain inflections, I'm just not sure how it would sound in your head if you're reading super fast.

#10 Edited by pyromagnestir (4326 posts) -

I am a painfully slow reader, and if anything I've gotten slower in recent years. On top of that my eyes also suck and I get problems with headaches or blurry vision if I'm reading in certain lighting conditions or for a certain amount of time.

Though I read very, very slowly if I am reading something I want to I can go quite a bit faster when reading a textbook or something I have to read. But I find when I am reading textbooks or whatever I'll occasionally just miss stuff, all of a sudden I'll be a few paragraphs or even pages further but thinking "wait what the hell is this book talking about right now? How did it get here?" The reason I read slower when I'm reading a book I like is to avoid that and why I wouldn't want to try to read faster.

#11 Posted by egg (1469 posts) -

Reading fast, isn't that dangerous? What if you miss something important? What if I read the Bible, but I read it too fast, and become atheist. And when I die, God will be like "you coulda believed but you tried to improve your reading speed with the Bible". And I'd be like "I'm sorry" and God would say "yea well that's them breaks" And then I'd go to hell, at which point a high reading speed is rather redundant don't ya think?

No, I already read like the Devil so there's no need.

damn right

#12 Posted by ToTheNines (752 posts) -

I think I read faster than I can comprehend. So I think I should actually slow down at times.

#13 Posted by TyCobb (1972 posts) -

The one thing I got out of researching this a long long time ago was, to try and stop sounding the words in your head. You basically limit your reading to as fast as you can talk. That's really the only thing that made sense.

Actual speed reading is pretty bullshit and only very few people can actually read at those lightning fast speeds that sites/products love to boast they can teach you. Just look into trying to stop "subvocalizing" if you do it already since that's the one thing that will slow you down.

#14 Edited by Aegon (5703 posts) -

@tycobb said:

The one thing I got out of researching this a long long time ago was, to try and stop sounding the words in your head. You basically limit your reading to as fast as you can talk. That's really the only thing that made sense.

Actual speed reading is pretty bullshit and only very few people can actually read at those lightning fast speeds that sites/products love to boast they can teach you. Just look into trying to stop "subvocalizing" if you do it already since that's the one thing that will slow you down.

Yep, that could definitely be it. It's hard to stop hearing the words and only read.

#15 Posted by DarthOrange (3867 posts) -

Nah I read pretty slow but it is what it is.

#16 Posted by JJOR64 (19023 posts) -

Nah I read pretty slow but it is what it is.

Same here. I'm a really slow reader.

#17 Posted by Devil240Z (3396 posts) -

I read one word at a time.

#18 Posted by joshwent (2297 posts) -

@aegon: I read shamefully slowly. I love reading, though, so I've kind of been forced to actually resort to audio books, just to be able to digest everything I want to read in a timely fashion, so I share your pain and have also looked into fixing it.

There's a pretty nifty site called Spreeder. I haven't used it a ton, so I can't say it's had a great impact on my general speed (yet), but when using it I can definitely read faster. The concept is that many people (myself definitely included) enunciate the words in their head while they're reading them. This isn't necessary for comprehension, as the vocalizing part is a separate area of your brain from visual comprehension, so it only serves to slow you down.

With Spreeder, you copy/paste a block of text from anywhere, and it serves it up to you one word at a time at an adjustable speed. So you can start slowly, but as you become aware of how you say the words in your head, kick up the speed so that the words actually begin to fly by faster than you can brain-say them. It's a pretty odd sensation, but (while using it specifically) it definitely works.

I hope you dig it, or that maybe it leads you to something even better. Good luck!

#19 Posted by Slag (4615 posts) -

Can't say I've ever done anything try to increase my speed, I started reading at an very early age however I learned to do it I probably did so before I was 5.

according to most I've asked I read pretty fast. According to one of those sites I was going about 850 WPM? I guess that's considered good?

Not sure my retention is that great though. But I really can't read slower, I just reread if I think I missed something.

Seen a couple comments suggesting sounding things out in your head, I strongly recommend not doing that. That method really really slows you down if you use it. Puts a hard cap on what you can do.

#20 Posted by Aegon (5703 posts) -
#21 Posted by Random45 (1233 posts) -

@slag said:

Can't say I've ever done anything try to increase my speed, I started reading at an very early age however I learned to do it I probably did so before I was 5.

according to most I've asked I read pretty fast. According to one of those sites I was going about 850 WPM? I guess that's considered good?

Not sure my retention is that great though. But I really can't read slower, I just reread if I think I missed something.

Seen a couple comments suggesting sounding things out in your head, I strongly recommend not doing that. That method really really slows you down if you use it. Puts a hard cap on what you can do.

850 wpm is VERY fast - so fast that it's impossible for you to fully comprehend everything you're reading. In this case, you might actually want to try and slow down a bit to fully enjoy a story.

As proof of this, not a single comment suggested sounding things out in this thread, in fact, they were advising against it.

As for this thread, I think my top speed is around 400-500 wpm, I can't say for sure. That being said, I do slow down big time occasionally when I come to dialogue scenes, because I enjoy picturing it in my head and having the two characters talking it out, sort of like a movie. Same with action scenes. if you blow through a scene, you miss so many things, and it's far less impressive. The only thing I actively speed through is purple prose type things - like when the author gets into a ridiculously detailed explanation of some object or place. I just done find it that interesting, and I want to move on to the bits that I do enjoy.