I am not a speed-reader, a fast reader, or even at the slow end of fast. On the other hand, I do not use my right index finger to follow the text, hold the book upside down (I saw that on the NYC subway), nor do I move my lips when I’m reading.
I am familiar with the English alphabet, including the archaic æ and œ, and I know the meaning of a shitload of words. But despite some amount of intelligence, I remain a . . . medium reader. A middle of the roader. Neither for nor against. Joe Average. You get the idea.
I am not complaining, mind you. I am slower than faster because I love the act of reading—of allowing a few simple written symbols fill my mind with pictures that affect, and sometimes play hell with, my emotions.
I have a tendency, then, to dawdle occasionally when I read. Strike that. I am a terminal dawdler. I re-read sentences, or paragraphs, or pages that please me, as well as those I have trouble understanding. I use a dictionary (which I believe is becoming as archaic as æ and œ). I attempt to translate foreign phrases when the author doesn't do it for me. And I love reading accents ala Dickens out loud (Yorkshire accents are a killer—try reading Nicholas Nickleby). Reading aloud, by the way, is one of the things Martha does not allow in bed, unless she is out of town.
So I stay happy being medium because I am a happy reader. Even when the book makes me sad. Or mad—in which case I happily throw it in the trash.
How about some audience participation on this one? Are you a Wiz kid, a dummy, or somewhere in between?