Monday, July 28, 2008

Reading every day

Those of you who know me well will be shocked by this: I haven't been reading much lately. In fact, I've had to force myself to read.

As a child, I once (once!) told my parents I didn't feel like reading. They took me to the hospital. I had to have my tonsils out. I have always been a voracious reader.

But as a writer, I've been finding it increasingly hard to read. I see things that don't make sense, badly written passages and so on, in a different way than I used to, and I miss my old style of just tearing through books.

I've been trying to fix this by telling myself to read a book a week, but it hasn't worked. It's made reading a chore, and that's even worse.

So, I've made a resolution. I read a new novel for 15 minutes a day. I can read longer, of course, but 15 is all that's required. It can be an author I've read before, but only books I haven't read before count. I started the day after my birthday, and I will continue until my next birthday.

In those two weeks, I've read three novels and am partway through the fourth. True, some days I got the 15 minutes in right before bed (and I set an alarm on the Palm to make sure I truly did the full 15!) but I haven't missed a day.

Related, I'm also planning a 'three strikes' policy. I've always been one to finish books even when I hate them, but now that just doesn't seem to make sense. So, a book gets three strikes. If there are three separate instances of ridiculous characters or insane interpretations of situations or "too stupid to live" behaviour, the book is no longer worth my time.

My current book is at two strikes (one for a character, in one paragraph, going from "OMG they're demons you can't even be friends with one" to "you're pregnant by one? congrats" and being genuinely happy. urgh) and based on how it's going I anticipate the next one coming later today. :) SO then I'll just admit that this woman's best-seller status makes no sense and move on with my life.

I know I'm not the only one who'd like to read more than I do. Perhaps this resolution would work for you too? 15 minutes isn't that hard to find, but if it is make it 10, or even 5.

But do read.

2 comments:

Bonnie said...

Hi Heather, it's me, Bonnie. I came over looking to contact you for an address to send your present but I can't find the e-mail contact form!

But I just laughed out loud at your parents taking you to the hospital when you didn't feel like reading.

Maybe the present I am sending will cure you; nothing is lower pressure or more relaxing than reading weird old beauty books. Write me with your address. I am bondowning(at)gmail(dot)com

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