Beware the man of one book. September 20, 2007
I don’t read as much as I’d like to these days.
Last year I read 50 books, roughly one per week. That was a good schedule for me. I felt like I was accomplishing something. If I was reading something I didn’t love, no big deal. There’d be something new next week.
Back in April when I started my new job, I also started an ordination track. Every Wednesday morning for two hours I meet with the whole ministry staff and a few others to go though whatever book we’re reading that month. So far we’ve talked about church theory, comparative religion, church history and the origin of the Bible. Week after next we start Old Testament survey. It’s been really interesting… my brain is being stretched like crazy and I enjoy hearing everyone’s take on the reading.
But the reading? It’s hard work.
I’ve always been a big reader. But the reading for this class is pretty daunting. So much so that I spent the first five months afraid to read anything else for fear of knocking something out of my head that I would need on Wednesday. I think between April and August I read maybe three non-class books. And that’s just sad.
What’s especially sad about it is that I never read for class until Tuesday. I am a procrastinator to the nth degree. I would think about reading something for fun, but then decide against it because “I really need to read for class.” Then I would spent Thursday-Monday thinking about how badly I needed to sit and read and Tuesday night cramming it in for Wednesday morning.
But not anymore! Well, not all of it, anyway. I still only read on Tuesdays. But I have decided to be more honest with myself. I know that I am not going to read for class before Tuesday. So now I am allowing myself to read for fun between Thursday and Monday.
So far it’s working pretty well for me. The problem now is that I feel like my fun reading days are few and far between, even though they’re not. So I am finding book choice to be especially challenging. I don’t want to waste my precious fun days on books I don’t like! I’ve been playing it safe so far, reading Sense and Sensibility and Mansfield Park. But eventually I will run out of Jane Austen novels. Where will I go from there? I have no idea.