1. Let child get bored
2. Have lots of good books around
I just cleaned up our "library," putting away the picture books my seven-year-old has read in the past couple of days. The books she's perused in the past two days (without any input from me) include:
The Little Mermaid (Hans Christian Anderson, not Disney version)
Hiawatha (illustrated by Susan Jeffers)
The Twelve Dancing Princesses
Two different anthologies of Grimm Brothers fairy tales
Ishtar and Tammuz (a Babylonian myth of the seasons)
The Random House Book of Ballet Stories
The Elephant's Child
Black Beauty (adaptation by Robin McKinley)
The Steadfast Tin Soldier
The Ugly Duckling
All in all, she'd pulled down about forty books. She goes into the library and reads quietly to herself, sometimes for hours. Meanwhile, I bought the almost ten-year-old the omnibus edition of Star Wars, The Empire Strikes Back, and Return of the Jedi, and she's making her way through those.
I'm happy to see that so far I'm successful in my nefarious plan to brainwash my kids into compulsive readers!