Books, Lists, Reading

I may have been too ambitious in my reading project

So, we’re less than three months away from the end of the year, and I’m not even to a quarter of my reading goal. Oops.

I wish I could say I had a good reason I haven’t been reading — a family emergency, a fancy new job, I was kidnapped by circus performers and forced to learn the trapeze  — but sadly my excuses are far more mundane. I fell asleep three pages into a book. I didn’t like the book and instead of abandoning it for something better, I stalled for weeks while slogging through. I watched “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” for the 18th time on Netflix. (To be fair to myself, I also watched a lot of really great TV and film, and because I love both, I feel little guilt for the new shows I tried out. I do feel guilt for the old shows I watched to simply avoid doing something more challenging.)

I have also run into the struggle of wanting to read the books already on my shelves, some of which have sat unopened for years. As I’m slowly working through them, I’m discovering exactly WHY I left them unopened for years — I purchased them on a whim, or at a particular period of my life, and the subject matter no longer feels relevant.

Here’s where I stand:

  • 19 of 100 books read
  • 2 books in progress
  • 8 books written by women
  • 2 nonfiction books
  • 2 books written by nonwhite authors

The truth is, reading should be enjoyable. So any time it becomes a chore instead of a hobby, a trial instead of a treat, my reading rate slows drastically. (I may have been better off saying I was going to watch more on Netflix as my goal, which inevitably would have made my brain want to read more instead of watch TV.)

So here I am, woefully behind. The good news is there’s still time to fit more reading, and now that the temperatures are dropping again, I am feeling the urge to lose myself in literature more than I did this summer, when the only thing I really want to do is nap until it was boots and sweater weather again.

I still think I can reach 50, and I can certainly reach my “diversity” goals. It’s just a matter of priority — and page turning.



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