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Thread: Retention Rate

  1. #1
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    Retention Rate

    I was just curious how well people's retention rates are on the novels they read.

    For instance, I read Anansi Boys ~ 1 year ago, and remember I enjoyed it, but neededa nudge from the Anansi Boy thread to remember the circumstances of what it was about.

    Please tell me I am not the only one!

  2. #2
    Registered User jchines's Avatar
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    I have similar problems -- my memory overall is pretty lousy.

    For the past year or so, I've been posting reviews of the books I read. I've found that this helps me remember them a bit more, so I don't humiliate myself quite as badly when my fellow SF/F geeks get to discussing books

  3. #3
    enslaved to my writing Abby's Avatar
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    I have trouble remembering details unless I reread the book 2-3 times. I have to really like it to do that.

    I read Gaiman's American Gods, but skipped Anasazi Boys because I'm not much of a Gaiman fan. I sort of remember some characters and scenes from American Gods, but not enough to have an in-depth book discussion.

  4. #4
    El-Prawno
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    I read American Gods about 6 months ago...and I can remember the characters, and a basic storyline.

    Generally my retention rate is pretty poor because I read quite a lot...And usually don't re-read stuff.....if it stands out, I'll remember it a lot better.

  5. #5
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    Woo I feel better now that I know that I am not the only one. I suppose I have lousy short term memory, plus I'm on information overload aka RSS feeds, books, other internet sites, etc.

  6. #6
    Just another traveler.
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    An interesting thread.

    Since joining this forum and reading through many posts, I've discovered that
    I've read and forgotten a lot more books than I've remembered.

    I don't feel this speaks to my lack of memory, but my lack of interest.

    I don't keep many books I've read - just the ones I really liked and knew I'd want to read again in time.

    There are books I've read once twenty years ago I still remember very well. There are books I've read two years ago I can't even remember the plot of.

    I guess it all comes down to how much you liked a book/author.

    Some are unforgetable.
    Many more, aren't.

  7. #7
    Reed-Sternberg Cell DrBloodmoney1's Avatar
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    If I read too much fantasy over a certain period, some of it tends to run together. Especially the more mediocre stuff.

    But works the aSoIaF and Malazan are so detail-rich, that they require multiple rereads to keep it all straight.

  8. #8
    Staff Banger's Avatar
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    It's funny - I'm re-reading Gaiman's Stardust in anticipation of the movie coming out this August. I read it a few years ago and recall enjoying it a lot, but I'm about halfway through my second reading now and I realize how much of it I have completely forgotten! It seems that all that I remembered were the hero, the wall, and the star, and that's about it

  9. #9
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    Having the opotrunity to read at work, I am constantly cycling through my library between new books to keep them all fresh in my memory.

  10. #10
    Something that I have started doing if I am reading a series is to have a look on wikipedia at the synopsis for the previous book to check I have remembered the plot.

    Might not be the best way but it works for me

  11. #11
    dw4rf thrinidir's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Macklyn View Post
    I don't feel this speaks to my lack of memory, but my lack of interest.

    There are books I've read once (twenty) a few years ago I still remember very well. There are books I've read two years ago I can't even remember the plot of.

    I guess it all comes down to how much you liked a book/author.

    Some are unforgetable.
    Many more, aren't.
    yes

    yes

    yes

    and f****** yes

  12. #12
    Wildrunner
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    From my studies in neuropathology I know that his is all pretty normal. Try putting youself back in the situation where you read the novel and see if you can't recall any more of it.

  13. #13
    I like spaceships cougs's Avatar
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    I'm the kind of person that can learn something, understand it in detail, and retain that detailed level of understanding for about a month or so. If i don't use the skill, talk about it, do it, etc I will lose the detailed understanding of and be left with a more general understanding of what I previously did.

    This caused me alot of pain during finals week in college.

    Books seem to be the same way as anything else with me, i'll remember them vividly for awhile (month, sometimes more depending on the book), and then my memory of them will eventually degrade to "generalness".

    Of course there are always exceptions, books that really clicked with me, I almost never forget!

    @errol

    Wikipedia rocks for that , its amazing how a short little plot summary can bring back lots of forgotten details.

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