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Learning about true events can be a great opportunity to better one’s self. While getting lost in other worlds is a lot of fun, learning from past events and people can prepare you for future events.
Reading is often a way for people to unwind, and to get lost in other places and worlds. Whether you’re going to a magic school for 7 years, or trying to figure out who the latest killer is, reading is a great way to imagine a world that isn’t real - it let’s you disconnect from truth.
While much of fiction writing is meant to entertain, there are many novels that try to educate readers as well through the use of their writing. There may be different morals or important life lessons that they want the reader to understand. These books are generally a bit more abstract, and considered more classical in nature - you can learn a lot from these novels, but it generally takes a bit more work to do so.
Non-fiction novels are generally much more direct in their attempts to reach the reader - that’s because these stories aren’t made up, but are rather actual things that happened according to the author. They’re not trying to abstractly show what they want the reader to see - they’re direct and to the point.
As a reader, you should absolutely be sure to include non-fiction reading in the books that you choose to read. It doesn’t have to be every book, but I would aim for at least 10% of what you read should be non-fiction. If you do more than that, that is great as well. I recommend reading non-fiction so that you can learn new things while reading - your reading will become more than just an escape, but a way to better yourself as well.
You should figure out what type of non-fiction books you enjoy, and that you connect with. The only way to do so is read across the different types of non-fiction books. You may find that you really like self-help books, and that they help to make you a better person. Alternatively, you may find that you really enjoy autobiographical novels of well known people, and you like to learn about those people. Whatever the case may be, find books that you enjoy reading so that you’ll continue to do so.
If you’re not sure of the different types of non-fiction novels, below is a list with a bit of information about each of them. There are more sub-genres than what I list below, but this gives you a pretty good overview of what’s out there.
- Biography and Autobiography - One of my favorite sub-genres on this list. I tend to enjoy reading more about historical figures than modern day celebrities, but there are so many people writing autobiographies these days, that you can find them about most anyone. John Adams got me heavily into reading.
- History - My other favorite genre on this list. Reading about past events, how they unfolded, what was going on in the time leading up to those events, and so forth. Many times, these novels will read like fiction in terms of the story-telling, but are actually completely based in fact. Learning about wars and other past events is fascinating when told correctly.
- Travel Literature - If you want to read about places to go, and what other countries have to offer, then these are the books for you. These novels will talk about different adventures that people have had, and how you can have them too.
- Self-help - I’m pretty sure these are the top selling books in the non-fiction world. People are always trying to find ways to better themselves in all aspects of their lives, and these books will help them to learn more about how you can accomplish new goals.
- Academic books - If you’re going to school, then these will be familiar. I’m not sure I know anyone that loves reading academic books, but I’m sure they’re out there.
There are other sub-genres beyond these, but this is just to start giving you an idea of what non-fiction books are out there. Finding what you enjoy reading is the most important part so that you will continue seeking out new books in that area.
Reading can take you all kinds of places. Learning from your reading can be extremely valuable in your life, and teach you things you may want or need to know. Just because you're a parent, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t continue learning. Make learning part of your reading experience.