Reading Is Fun(damental) Dept.


I have the bad habit of seeking comfort where I know I shouldn't. Viz.: re-reading a book, or just dipping back into one I've read many times to read here and there, instead of starting a new one that I know will be worth the while. Life being unpredictably short, it does you no favors to cheat yourself out of the chance to experience something new. Ebert once called that sort of behavior a crime against one's curiosity, and how many criminals of that kind are minted every day? 

Hence, I find, one of the major disadvantages with having most of your stuff in storage until you can find a house to put them in: you think that'll give you an incentive to seek out new reading experiences — that is, by being forced to pick up a new book instead of root around in storage for one of the old ones (or even one of the old, unread ones). No such dice. Instead, I ended up re-reading the same two or three books I'd brought with me. Finally I got real sick of this, went out and bought Kurt Vonnegut's Cat's Cradle  — which I'd never read cover to cover until now — and used that as the combo-breaker. It seems to have done the trick. (More about the book itself later, of course, but the short version is that Vonnegut is one of our most misunderstood writers, perhaps deliberately so.)

Starting any new reading habit is tough, for the same reason starting any new habit is tough. No end of excuses not to begin the new habit present themselves. The familiar, even if it's bad for you, takes precedence over the useful new, for no other reason than it is familiar. This hurts all the worse when you're someone who prides himself on being forward-thinking — it becomes a genuine blow to one's own pride to leave a 150-page book unread for months simply because it's new, and therefore involves effort and instead of promising comfort.

Small wonder my last trip to the store involved the new translation of Doctor Zhivago and Philip K. Dick's Exegesis (finally!). If forcing myself to smash through those doesn't get the reading fire re-ignited in me for keeps, nothing will.


Tags: readers reading writers writing




About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Serdar in the category Uncategorized / General, published on March 15, 2014 10:00 AM.

You can see alphabetical or chronological listings of all entries in this category.

» See other Uncategorized / General entries for the month of March 2014.

» See all other entries for the month of March 2014.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.

About Me

I'm an independent SF and fantasy author, technology journalist, and freelance contemplator for how SF can be made into something more than just a way to blow stuff up.

My Goodreads author profile.

Learn some more about me.

My Books

Coming Soon

Out Now

More of my books

Search This Site


Other People We Like

Fandom

Archives