Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Stop Everything...and Read!

I'm a picky reader. I'm famous for not finishing books (why should I, when there are a hundred more in line that might be better?). I make a habit of reading 5 or 6 at a time...and taking months to finish just one. I read bits and pieces from one article or two from another. Web-zines, email, short stories, journals, news articles. You name it, I probably read it today (or at least a part of it).

So, even though I'm a picky reader, I'm an avid reader. It just takes A LOT to really impress me enough to make me STOP EVERYTHING...and READ.

A few books that have done it: everything by Dan Brown, Vanity Fair, Thirteen Reasons Why and Hunger Games (adolescent fiction), any and all by Diana Gabaldon, Prozac Nation, The Kiss, Kim Barnes' memoir trilogy, the diary of Anais Nin, and a host of others.

I gobble books of poetry (Sylvia Plath, Emily Dickinson, Richard Jones, Charles Baudelaire), devour memoirs, and dive into historical fiction. Psychological thrillers, suspense, and dramatic histories. I really love to read.

And buying books is like a drug all its own. I used to joke that Barnes and Noble was like my methadone clinic. But, it IS a sickness. I hoard them. I covet them. I make lists of the ones I have and lists of the ones I want.

List-making is another of my neurosis.

But that is neither here nor there.

My love affair with books has been a long and sometimes intense one. But, like any affair, it has had its ups and downs...its droughts...its moments of intense passion.

Like now. I am nearly 3/4 of the way through The Art of Racing in the Rain...and I actually considered, at length, not posting tonight. Instead, I would steal away to the corner of the couch in a soft, yellow blanket, and finish the whole damn thing (way more than my allotted and prescribed 20 minutes).

In fact, that's what I still plan to do. A cup of chamomile tea (a beautifully natural sleep aid, stomach soother, and headache reliever). A purring cat on my lap. A snoring dog at my feet. The tap, tap, tap of D. typing away on his computer in the other room.

Yup. I think I'm done here.

P.S. When was the last time a book completely owned you? Maybe you should search for a paperback mistress that lights your fire enough to make you turn away from at least a few of your less pressing obligations. Maybe Lolita? I'd certainly suggest it. And if you're looking for good reads, try Book Lust.

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