Today I am here to talk to you about reading in another language that is not your own language from your country… and by that I mean – READING IN ENGLISH.
As you probably know, and if you don’t you should (kidding…) I am portuguese, so I am not from UK and I am not from USA or Canada I am from Portugal. A lot of people automatically know when someone is portuguese because of the accent and because of the writting skills (which of course sometimes is true) but not every portuguese shows to the world that he/she is not Britith or American, actually we (portuguese people) have an actor in the United States that has a perfect accent – Diogo Morgado – and we have an actress that has a perfect accent too and that played or is still playing (not sure) a role in the TV Show NCIS Los Angeles – Daniela Ruah.
I told you all of that because we may not be born in The United States or in England but we can be as good as they can, we can be international… we can travel the world and be understood by everyone, we can take masters and degrees in their countries and talk perfectly their language… we just have to work a little harder.
I guess that I talked about this once but I will talk about it again just in case you don’t remember…
Before 2013 I hated to read because I never liked the way books were translated to my native language and a lot of people on Instagram told me the same about their “reading habits”… my godmother would give me a ton of books every Christmas and every year on my birthday and I need to be honest, in 50 I probably read 10, not even that I guess. My mother, my cousin and my godmother said a million times that I should read but I never wanted to because it was boring and portuguese books are huge because in a phrase we use more words than “english” people use to construct their phrases.
In November of 2013 (I am not sure if it was in November or in December actually) I was really bored because I was waiting for a class and I had nothing to do and I asked my mom “What can I do? I am bored”, and my mom said “Read”… and I was like “yes mom, thank you so much, you want to kill me with boredom”… and my mom said “You have an iPad, there’s a thing called eBooks… there are FREE eBooks on the Internet… give it a try… they are written in english and since you don’t like to read in portuguese…” and I actually did, I gave it a try, I downloaded an eBook and it was a New Adult story and I totally loved it. I read that book really slowly because my english was REALLY bad… and that’s basically where this post should begin (I am sorry, I know, I talk too much).
I was really bad in english, at school it was probably my WORST subject, so when I started reading that eBook I knew nothing about the language, I mean, I knew some little things here and there but my ability to conjugate verbs was HORRIBLE, I didn’t know how to construct a phrase, I didn’t know how to pronounce most part of the words… I was a disgrace. BUT I don’t know what happened, that changed, dramatically. At the beginning I had to ask my mom about the meaning of some words, I had to search some stuff around and I was really slow reading in english, I had to read out loud sometimes to try to understand some stuff. Somehow I started reading faster and faster and understanding everything… my accent was still a disgrace and my writting skills were a shame but I was getting better and I was finally understanding this awesome language.
There’s something I guess that is REALLY important to you to understand and that is “you will not learn a language fast… not as fast as you wanted to because it is a process and it takes time, you are always learning and that’s why reading is so important”… It took me a lot of time to learn how to write correctly, my first reviews are a SHAME, I was a shame, I wrote those reviews and they were full of mistakes, everytime I finished writting a review I had to show it to my mom so she could correct the mistakes because it was really bad, and also, those reviews are really small… we are in 2016, I am reading in english for 2 years and something now and now I write my own reviews, I don’t ask my mom to read them and to correct them because I already know how to write correctly but it took time, in 2014 most part of my reviews were revised by my mom, then it changed but I was still “writting mistakes”… sometimes I still do.
I have now some tips for you so you can read and write fluently in english
1st. Follow book blogs
2nd. Write your own reviews (Goodreads)
3rd. Don’t be afraid to ask Google for help
4th. Don’t be afraid to ask any kind of help
5th. Create a bookstagram so you can communicate with other book lovers
Now some tips for your accent and so you can talk more fluently too
1st. Watch a lot of TV Shows and Movies with the subtitles in ENGLISH
2nd. Go and watch videos on Youtube (Booktubers are really awesome so you can get more “bookish” words)
3rd. Read out loud, it will help you a lot with your accent/pronounce
4th. Talk with your parents or friends in english
5th. Take english classes
If by change you don’t know where you can buy your books in english I will just leave the links bellow (note: TBD is international with free shipping, I order most part of my books from there, Amazon exists in a lot of countries BUT not every country has it – Portugal doesn’t have Amazon – and, the shipping for foreign countries can be really expensive on Amazon, so just think wisely.)
Thank you for reading this post and I hope I helped you somehow, friday I will be talking about “Deciding What To Read Next”.