I envy people who are fast readers. They start a book, whiz through it, and are ready for the next one. I joined GoodReads, and part of me wanted to hang my head in shame and shout, “I am not worthy,” because these people read books at an alarming rate. Most read several books a week. One guy said that on nights he’s not busy, he can read two books in one night. If someone locked me in my house and tied me in a chair, I still couldn’t read that fast. I tend to slow down at parts I like and go back to reread them. I savor word choices. I underline or highlight passages that take my breath away. (Yes, if I buy a book, I write in it. It makes it mine).
B.C. (Before Children), I read a lot. Something’s happened since then. Reading is the last thing I get to, and by the time I settle down with a book, I’m usually tired.
I’m lucky if I read one book every three weeks. For one thing, our house is busy. Kids come and go. I spend most of my day writing. I love to cook, so there’s supper to make every night. Our living room is just that–for living. After supper, the TV set is usually on. A kid’s usually on the computer in my office. Another one has friends in the basement, playing X-box or working out with weights. Before I know it, my favorite shows come on. I lose from eight to ten o’clock most week nights, I’m ashamed to say. I wish it were for intellectual pursuits. It’s not. I’m hooked on Dancing with the Stars and So You Think You Can Dance. I watch American Idol. What can I say? My husband and I used to drive two to three hours to see Bob Fosse shows. I’m a sucker for song and dance.
But GoodReads is going to be a motivator for me, I can tell. I want to up my ante, raise the stakes. No huge count, for me, but if I finish one book a week, I’ll be happy with myself. I don’t want to rush through the pages, but I’d like to turn them, from beginning to end. And I intend to.