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Squeezing in a Read: 4 ways to get yourself stuck into books

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4 min read

Squeezing in a Read: 4 ways to get yourself stuck into books

4 min read

24/02/21

Squeezing in a Read: 4 ways to get yourself stuck into books

Sit back. Relax. Get Lost. Unwind! On Thursday 25th February, Ireland Reads is encouraging everyone to get stuck into a book and pledge to read for a certain amount of time.

Ireland Reads is a fantastic new initiative from the public libraries, as part of the government’s #KeepWell campaign, to put reading first and foremost in the minds of Irish people for one day.  So far the reaction has been fantastic and Ireland has already pledged to read for 460,000 minutes on Thursday 25th February. Recent studies have shown that even one thirty-minute session of reading showed a significant reduction in stress, while a number of studies have shown that reading can have a significant result in reducing anxiety. 

So now that you know, you’ll definitely want to get involved! Well you can pledge for yourself on the Ireland Reads website or sign up for any of the events taking place including The Great Escape, a panel discussion chaired by Rick O’Shea. 

But if you’re actively looking for practical ways to bring yourself closer to the love of books, here are some helpful, easy and accessible tips here. 

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Get Inspiration from fellow book lovers 

Hearing about favourite books from family and friends is one of the best ways to remind us to be more avid readers and to challenge our reading lists. As part of Ireland Reads, the Creative Ireland Programme has supported an event with Kildare Libraries on Friday February 26th with singer, songwriter and musician Liam Ó Maonlaí of Hothouse Flowers as he chats about his favourite books. Sign up for free and hear from Liam as he talks about some of his most influential reads. 

Support your local book festival 

What better way to spend an evening at home than to immerse yourself in the world of literary greatness at one of our incredible local book festivals, most of which miraculously have been able to take their programmes of talks, readings, workshops and discussions online. Ennis Book Club Festival kick off their activities on March 5th with an array of inspiring and talented Irish authors including Roddy Doyle, Naoise Dolan, Kevin Barry and Donal Ryan along with international talent such as recent Booker Prize winner Douglas Stuart. Tickets to all these events are free and you’ll be crazy not to snap them up immediately. Later in the year, the prestigious Hinterland literary festival will return again in Kells, Co.Meath for another sensational line-up. Previous guests include Sebastian Barry, John Boyne and Germaine Greer.  

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Start or Join an Online Book Club 

While it may require a gentle learning curve and the general handling of Zoom etiquette, Online Book Clubs are popping up all over Ireland at some speed. Fuelled by our unyielding interest in the book club ritual, the impassioned debating and divided opinions, in some cases it may be easier and less time consuming to steal an hour away while at home and join one. The Creative Ireland Programme is currently supporting an Online Book Club in Galway, hosted by Galway Libraries which looks at Women Writers of the West and invites guest writers each week. Look for one in your locality that suits your reading level. 

Get them reading young 

We know about how much children love reading but by encouraging books at an early age we can actually unlock a lifetime of good reading habits. Whatever your child’s age, there are fantastic local events and activities to get them involved with. Bookville in a Book is a Kilkenny-based festival which celebrates writing, animation, illustration and storytelling to inspire children, while Children’s Book Festival runs during October and is a great opportunity for young people and parents to celebrate books and reading. In Donegal, Wainfest Children’s and Book Festival provides opportunities for children of all ages to engage creatively with reading and language. 

Find a list of the Creative Ireland events and activities available in your area here

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