Image: Element5 Digital / Unsplash
Image: Element5 Digital / Unsplash

Short reads for the busy student

As a student, it can be hard to find the time to read for fun. Committing yourself to reading a novel is sadly not a top priority for busy students. But there are many ways you can read for pleasure while studying.  Although reading can bring a large amount of stress at university, it is important to relax in the short spaces of time when you are not doing course reading whether it’s on the bus, or whilst your pasta is boiling. It can help rediscover your love of reading, making your course reading that little bit easier.

One way of doing this is by typing ‘30 minute short reads’ into Amazon. This exposes you to a world of books that only take half an hour of your time. They are available to download on Kindle, meaning you don’t have to carry yet another book to campu- Kindle app is available on Android, Apple and Windows phones. That journey on the U1 might just go that little bit quicker with this, without eating up the data used when scrolling the internet. Also, The search Quick Reads’ into Amazon gives you 3,585 short reads all costing under £5.

WordPress can also be downloaded onto your phone with the app making this a convenient, portable way of light reading…

Short stories are also available to buy in collections. These are sometimes collected with different authors having written them, with a similar theme running through them, or at other times are collated by the same author. Jojo Moyes, author of Me Before You, released Paris for One and Other Stories, containing eleven short stories. Stories are conveniently in the same place, and for those who like a physical copy of the book, it is much cheaper.  

WordPress allows you to read whenever and as much as you like. There are thousands of short reads under the ‘short story’, ‘poem’ or ‘flash fiction’ hashtags.  You can find those authors which you enjoy and ‘follow’ them to receive updates on when they post new content. Like Kindle, WordPress can also be downloaded onto your phone with the app making this a convenient, portable way of light reading. A great WordPress blog which publishes short stories from different amateur authors is Fictive Dream. The stories published here range from 500 words to 2,500 words. You can read these anywhere – in the queue for a coffee in the library café, waiting outside your lecture hall or when waiting for your flatmate to finally get out of the shower.

A new story is published each day, giving you something different every mundane morning…

365 Tomorrows is a website publishing flash fiction. The genre is principally science fiction and each piece is under six-hundred words. They publish a new story each day, giving you something different every mundane morning. Another great website is Classic Shorts, which publishes short stories by classic authors such as George Orwell and Edgar Allen Poe. It is a free service as the stories that it publishes are those out of copyright. It states the word count of each story so that you can choose one based on the amount of time you have.

Lastly, I know I’m not the only one guilty of reading books meant for a much younger age group. The children’s fiction section on WHSmith is filled with easy reads, which may not be short but do not require too much thought! One of my favourites is Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon, reasonably short and very easy to read. Of course, another great read are the Roald Dahl books, but basically anything you read when you were growing up! When in doubt, you can always rely on a children’s book to be a quick, easy read when you need to relax..

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