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Tips for reading theology books fast?

Volnutt

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Not really talking about literal speed reading, so maybe something closer to skimming? I'm trying to use things like this and this to pack more reading into my life but I somehow doubt they're tips that work very well for super dense/weighty or super technical nonfiction (even if the first one sounds like it should).

My problem is that whenever I read theology or history or anything similar I... reeeeead... veeeeery... sloooooowly... because I'm so afraid of missing something or misunderstanding a key point. It probably made college harder than it had to be and it's causing me to fall way behind on my nonfiction, so much so that on a lot of days I don't even want to start reading. It's demoralizing.

Does anybody have any tips for reading difficult things with that magic combination of both speed and comprehension/retention?
 

Hinterlander

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The more you read and faster you'll read - especially if it is on a topic you've read before . . . for example, the sixth book you read on the History of the Orthodox Church will go much faster than the first you read.

I'd also suggest you get over the anxiety of missing something - you can always go back to a book after reading it.
 

RobS

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Why do you feel the need to read a lot of theology books fast?
 

FinnJames

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RaphaCam said:
Have a pencil in your hand and go marking whatever you find important, that way you'll be more secure about not losing detail and read faster.
But only do this with books you own. (librarian here  ;) )
 

RaphaCam

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FinnJames said:
RaphaCam said:
Have a pencil in your hand and go marking whatever you find important, that way you'll be more secure about not losing detail and read faster.
But only do this with books you own. (librarian here  ;) )
Don't! Keep a legacy to the next readers.  :p
 

Volnutt

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Hinterlander said:
The more you read and faster you'll read - especially if it is on a topic you've read before . . . for example, the sixth book you read on the History of the Orthodox Church will go much faster than the first you read.
Good point.

Hinterlander said:
I'd also suggest you get over the anxiety of missing something - you can always go back to a book after reading it.
Probably also a good point. But re-reading anything after it's been less than a year or two makes me feel week for forgetting it.

RobS said:
Why do you feel the need to read a lot of theology books fast?
Lot of things I'm way behind on that I shouldn't be (same with history, philosophy, and classic literature). Maybe it's part of an extended quarter-life crisis. Even at 32 I feel the reaper breathing down my neck and want to play lots of catch up.

RaphaCam said:
Have a pencil in your hand and go marking whatever you find important, that way you'll be more secure about not losing detail and read faster.
Been there. Helps a little, but then I go crazy with it and just underline half the book and can't tell what I really wanted to remember.
 

Alpha60

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FinnJames said:
RaphaCam said:
Have a pencil in your hand and go marking whatever you find important, that way you'll be more secure about not losing detail and read faster.
But only do this with books you own. (librarian here  ;) )
I never markup books that I own.  My fear of scratching or devaluing them leads me to refrain even from marking up my ebook collection...  ;)
 

Volnutt

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Alpha60 said:
FinnJames said:
RaphaCam said:
Have a pencil in your hand and go marking whatever you find important, that way you'll be more secure about not losing detail and read faster.
But only do this with books you own. (librarian here  ;) )
I never markup books that I own.  My fear of scratching or devaluing them leads me to refrain even from marking up my ebook collection...  ;)
I have a bit of that anxiety as well, yes.
 
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