SPEED READING 46 YEARS LATER… THE BASIC PRINCIPLES STILL APPLY
SPEED READING IN THE DIGITAL AGE
I plucked a tenuous book off my shelf written in 1966 entitled: Mastering Speed Readingby Norman C. Maberly, ED.D. (128 pages) and subsequently went on to Amazon to see how the concept of speed reading has progressed. Enter, Speed Reading for Dummies, by Richard Sutz. C. 2009 (274 pages). Personally I read everything from mysteries, non-fiction to Wired magazine and the Wall Street Journal (okay, I don’t read Chick Lit and NYT’s Bestsellers). I tested and classify myself as an advanced reader (over 300 wpm) and wanted to pick up the pace and further improve my skills… This book helped and will give you the tools and tests you need.
SO, WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT ALFIE?
Sutz explains early on that the typical reader techniques stopped at the 3rd grade level of oral reading… word by word that you might still be applying in your mind. He also debunks the myths. One of them is that you don’t have to run your fingers down the pages, known as a pacer (a visual guide) like Dr. Spencer Reid in Criminal Minds – The First Season. You will learn to break bad habits and understand eye fixations and how to widen your visual field when reading. Sutz’s Speed Reading for Dummies is concise and comprehensive and deconstructs the written word to help recognize the patterns and accelerate your intake on the page– and also covers tips for reading articles online and emails in this digital age.
WHAT DO YOU WANT TO BRING TO YOUR READING?
In the final analysis, as Sutz points out: You decide how much you want bring to your reading. The evolution of speed reading has come along way since Evelyn Wood threw her book in the dirt and invented “pacing” when she brushed the dirt off the pages, but the basic principles still apply (just without the pacer perhaps).
You have to read a lot, challenge yourself and practice to read more in less time. It also boils down to: what are your personal goals? Me personally, if I’m reading a mystery, I might want to slow down and enjoy the story or dialogue. On the other hand, I also have to quick study and clump and chunk information in technology and other areas of my professional life and that requires me to apply the techniques in this book.
It works if you read and practice these techniques!
Do you use any speed reading techniques? Please share.