Books, Books, Books!

It’s many a year (decade) since I bothered to keep track of my reading — how many books, and which titles. But that subject has popped up so many times lately, including on one of the Scribophile forums, that it’s become an infectious meme. So I’ll give it a try this year. Goodness knows, it would be nice to have one project that I stick to religiously.

I read somewhere between 50 and 100 books in 2016, going from weeks-long binges where I did almost nothing but read, to weeks when I read hardly anything at all. That pattern isn’t much different from my writing, come to think of it, and there’s no reason to think that will change.

When I moved back to Michigan, what was left of my library filled about half of a three-shelf bookcase. That was almost a year and a half ago. Today, that bookcase is overflowing, with books behind the top shelf books, and books stacked on top of the second shelf books. Books are in the amusing niche built for a long-ago telephone and phone book, and beginning to stack up on the bottom shelf of the end table/tacky cart beside my comfy chair.

Blame Amazon. Blame my son for getting into the book business and giving me the opportunity to scour the shelves of Goodwill and the Salvation Army way too often. When books are just a dime, or even as cheap as a nickel in the SA’s desperation to get rid of their overflow, there’s no reason to resist trying out novels that I might not otherwise bother with. Of course, the books I’d like most to replace aren’t likely to be found in thrift stores, so actual replacement is going on at a slower rate. Quite a few are out of print and now unaffordable, unless I have a real need for the information they contain.

The meme that will never infect me is “I’m going to read xxx number of books during the year. So many responses to How many did you read in 2016? indicates that even writer don’t necessarily read a lot, which was fairly surprising. Twenty or thirty books in a whole year? Would that have something to do with the poor quality of so much indie writing?

I guess I’ll go start my new Scrivener project: 2017 Reading List. The first one will be Women From Another Planet?, which I started yesterday (a reread). But I’m not that far into it yet, so it’s legitimately a 2017 read.

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One thought on “Books, Books, Books!

  1. I can’t do anything constructive in the heat, so tend to get a lot of reading done in summer. Just read Thea Astley’s novel, The Slow Natives and her short story collection, Hunting the Wild Pineapple. While it was great for me, who’s virtually a Queenslander, tho born in Sydney, to read about Qld country towns, I wouldn’t recommend the books to anyone overseas. They are very dense with metaphor, which I found too much after a while.

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