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Tuesday, October 09, 2007

The Tortoise

I updated my completed reading list the other day, but didn't change the post date so it was still showing up in the August update slot. So, through September -- I've finished 84 books and and approximately 29,388 pages (who knows what mistakes I made punching in the numbers).

There is no way I'll read as many books as I did last year; at 146, it was an unusual year. My normal is around 120 books a year, not sure that will happen either.

The difference? Two things:

1) I'm reading much more nonfiction, which I read more slowly and which are often 400-500 pages, and

2) Until late last year, I rarely turned on the television, but this year I get my hand quilting or embroidery pieces and make a point of watching certain tv shows and my Netflix movies.

Right now I have 4 books started, but 2 are set aside for only occasional sessions (The Habit of Being- Flannery O'Connor's letters and The Art of Eating- M.F.K. Fisher's essays). I take Flannery outside and read a letter or two when I'm taking porch breaks. I read an essay of Fisher's sometimes before going to sleep; as it resides on my nightstand, I can reach over, grab it, read an essay, and put it down again.

Slow and steady.


  1. Last year, I read the most books I'd ever read in a year: 60. This year I'm already at 77. I was kind of hoping that I would be able to get that number up to 100 by the end of the year, but I'm not sure if I'll make it.

  2. I've read fewer pages but slightly more books, but I noticed I've been going almost entirely light on my reading, this year. I'm not sure why, but my ability to concentrate has gone out the window in 2007. You're doing fantastic.

  3. MM - I'm not sure why keeping track is important, but each time I see that someone has totaled their reads, I'm compelled to see where I stand as well. :) You are well ahead of last year and that is an accomplishment!

    Bookfool - My reading varies that way from year to year. My memoir/biography goal has had a lot to do with my more serious reading this year, but mysteries, fantasy, and science fiction are never far away!

  4. I usually cannot read an entire collection of essay all at once because each piece is an individual entity. I need more time to think through the essay. So essay collection is usually on the nightstand.

    Non-fiction is a rarity for me. I probably don't read more than 5 a year, and it's usually history.

    The whole idea of TV seems so distant and foreign to me! I'm not familiar with most of the sit-coms now! :)

  5. Matt - And that is part of the pleasure of essays -- they are self-contained. Read one, close the book, let it simmer.

    Most of my non-fiction reading this year has been biographical, but I do enjoy history, science that is written for the general public, and books about different cultures and specific aspects of our own culture.

    My husband finds it hard to believe that I watch television most nights now, but I find it difficult to just sit down and watch, I need my handwork.