Thursday, April 13, 2023

Why Don’t More People Read Books?



Why do we read books? To avid readers, the answer is obvious --- and many things. But what is it to people who tend to not read books unless forced to do so for school or work?

Here’s why people read:


  • Be entertained
  • Escape out of their world or life
  • Feel inspired or motivated
  • Experience enlightenment
  • Learn and acquire knowledge
  • Be better at something --a-how-to book 

They also gain these benefits:


  • Expand vocabulary and literacy
  • Help your ability to think, communicate, and speak
  • Make you a better writer
  • Relieves stress
  • Keep you from harmful addictions (maybe)
  • Introduces you to lives, events, or concepts you had no idea existed
  • Creates a model to live by -- or avoid -- depending on the content
  • Offer hope, possibility, and affirmation that you are not alone 

Reading should be fun, not a chore -- a perk, not an obligation. For too many, reading is hard, challenging, boring, and a useless endeavor. Maybe they just haven’t tried hard enough or didn’t read the right book. Or maybe they are impatient, tired, suffer from a learning disorder, or have poor reading skills.  

Obviously, there are multiple reasons why over 30,000,000 Americans are illiterate and well over another 100,000,000 who will fail to read even a single book this year. The question here is: How much different would the world be if everyone read books, maybe even some of the same ones? 

There are plenty of smart people who read books. They, however, have not solved the world’s problems and likely added to them. Book consumption does not guarantee that one will act ethically, legally, or successfully, but I’d like to believe it’s a start.  

Of course, not all books are equal nor good. Some are poorly written and edited. Some just dwell on negative events to portray a hopeless picture of the world. But I think there is far larger net gain of wonderful books out there. If only they could be read by more people. 

Today’s young students have a low reading proficiency. According to the 2022 National Assessment of Educational Progress, reading levels dropped to their lowest scores in 30 years. Only one in three students met proficiency standards. Some will blame the failed pandemic school response. Others will say social media and video platforms and streaming entertainment on cellphones are stealing, children away from books. Both assessments are correct. We need to fight back.  

What we need are more public service announcements and reminders to read a book. I used to see Reading Is Fun commercials on T.V. Where did they go? Let’s put up bulletin boards encouraging reading. Let’s advertise the hours and locations of our libraries. Give kids physical books at schools, not just laptops with websites to surf. 

More people should read more books. It is a formula for success, both individually and for society. Let’s all make books available to others, and to encourage people to open a book and let it be a gateway to knowledge and joy.


Need Book Marketing Help?

Brian Feinblum, the founder of this award-winning blog, can be reached at  He is available to help authors promote their story, sell their book, and grow their brand. He has over 30 years of experience in successfully helping thousands of authors in all genres. Let him be your advocate, teacher, and motivator!


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About Brian Feinblum

Brian Feinblum should be followed on Twitter @theprexpert. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog ©2023. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester with his wife, two kids, and Ferris, a black lab rescue dog. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s The Independent.  This award-winning blog has generated over 3.3 million pageviews. With 4,400+ posts over the past dozen years, it was named one of the best book marketing blogs by BookBaby  and recognized by Feedspot in 2021 and 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. It was also named by as a "best resource.” For the past three decades, including 21 years as the head of marketing for the nation’s largest book publicity firm, and two jobs at two independent presses, Brian has worked with many first-time, self-published, authors of all genres, right along with best-selling authors and celebrities such as: Dr. Ruth, Mark Victor Hansen, Joseph Finder, Katherine Spurway, Neil Rackham, Harvey Mackay, Ken Blanchard, Stephen Covey, Warren Adler, Cindy Adams, Todd Duncan, Susan RoAne, John C. Maxwell, Jeff Foxworthy, Seth Godin, and Henry Winkler. He recently hosted a panel on book publicity for Book Expo America, and has spoken at ASJA, Independent Book Publishers Association Sarah Lawrence College, Nonfiction Writers Association, Cape Cod Writers Association, Willamette (Portland) Writers Association, APEX, and Connecticut Authors and Publishers Association. His letters-to-the-editor have been published in The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, New York Post, NY Daily News, Newsday, The Journal News (Westchester) and The Washington Post. He has been featured in The Sun Sentinel and Miami Herald. For more information, please consult:  



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