View Full Version : Taking notes while reading for pleasure?


Tamsin
04-26-11, 12:13 AM
My whole life I have loved reading, and still do, but have always struggled with it. Beyond the whole possible Dyslexia part of it (switching/adding/skipping words, letters, etc) I have always had a very hard time keeping track of everything. I can read for 20 minutes, set the book down to get something to eat, pick it up again, start reading, and realize I have no idea who certain characters are, or where the scene I am reading takes place, forcing me to back track. Right now I am reading a book on Eleanor of Aquitaine and it is really interesting but I literally read about a character and then 3 pages later, when his name was mentioned again, I completely forgot who he was.

It is extremely frustrating to constantly be forgetting so much, even forgetting the main character's name. For anybody who likes to read, do you have any strategies? Do you take notes? Or maybe do something else to help you remember?

tired1823
04-26-11, 01:36 AM
I think I did forget characters names, but it never really got in the way for me. I learned to underline something and write why I underlined it in detail. That way I could remember the parts I liked best about the book. It was really enjoyable that way. (I always hoped no one would see them though because I remember writing fractured paragraphs all over the margins of a page and they would not make sence to anyone but me) you could also make a list of the main characters and their characteristics on the back of the front cover as you come across them. That's what my mom did (before she even knew she had add- she came up with that stradegy all on her own.)

pooka
04-26-11, 01:40 AM
you could also make a list of the main characters and their characteristics on the back of the front cover as you come across them.
That's a good idea - I do that sometimes, and also when I'm reading for class and the teacher mentions something we should be looking for while reading (motifs, themes, etc) I write those down on the front cover to remind myself. I'm pretty good at retaining what I read, but what happens to me is that I'll read half of a book, forget about it for like a month, and then come back to it and only have a foggy idea of what's going on. So instead of rereading the whole thing, I just look back at my handy-dandy front-cover notes.

Cacho
04-26-11, 09:15 AM
I often just read for the impression I get, the feeling I get from the book. I might forget details, but I still come away with a good "feel' for the book. I do this for fiction reading generally.

I found that I can really remember what I read if I write notes on the computer summarizing each page / section in my own words as I go along. This takes a lot of time, but I only need to read over the book once, so in the long run it might save time versus going over the book multiple times. I think this works really well because you spend more time with the book and taking the author's words and making them your own really drills everything into your head.

I'm incredibly bad with names in books. When I was little and my dad read to me, we used to get 3/4th of the way through a book and then I'd ask who a person was when it was the main character.

Now, I'll be sitting next to my girlfriend as we watch a movie and 3/4 of the way through someone says a name and of course it's the main character's and of course I don't know who it is.

Cacho
04-26-11, 09:17 AM
you could also make a list of the main characters and their characteristics on the back of the front cover as you come across them

Some old books, especially historical fiction, have a list of characters at the beginning with a little blurb about each one... I wish every book had this.

Tamsin
06-04-11, 09:27 PM
I don't like to write in any of my books at all for any reason, but maybe I will try writing it in a notebook.