Saturday, January 24, 2009

"no time to read"

I've never understood it when people tell me they have no time to read. The busier I get, and the more swamped with various projects and deadlines, the MORE I find myself reading. Those are the times when I'm most likely to come back from the library with a stack of books... some biographies, some histories, travel writing, new bestsellers, old novels... The times when I feel most overwhelmed by deadlines and anxious about the obvious impossibility of getting everything done - those are the times when I'm most likely to have trouble sleeping and then, of course - what choice do I have? - I spend even more time reading.

My favourite low-tech library technique (which I think began when we lived in Colombia, as I made my trek once a month to the English language library in the north end of Bogota for my "fix" of English reading material) - once I've found the book or books I came looking for - is to just walk down the aisles and read titles and grab whatever looks interesting. I used to be amazed at how much fascinating stuff I found this away. I'm no longer amazed - now I count on it.

Anyway, this well-worn pattern is definitely re-asserting itself. No sooner had I finished The Omnivore's Dilemma and the Long Emergency, with a Townes Van Zandt biography and another Robert Charles Wilson novel thrown in, than I find myself racing through that Obama biography in order to get to the new stack I brought home from the library today... all the while continually revising my list of train reading for the upcoming tour...

What's not so clear is how this fits with blogging, for which I am far more likely to use the "no time for..." line. Since blogging is a newer discipline and indoor sport for me, I'm still liable to be tormented by the "blockage" phenomenon that used to affect my reading too - I'd get bogged down with something but feel badly about not finishing it, so I'd end up not reading much while I tried heroically to get through whatever it was that had lost my interest. It was a breakthrough when I finally told myself that life's too short and there are too many good books out there to get bogged down by one (even a "great" one) that's not grabbing me - so I gave myself permission to put it down and start another one. While flipping through 3 others. And adding to my longer-term list of "next ones"...

I suspect I need to do the same with blogging. I'm finding it hard to let go of the backlog of bloggable ideas and musings that feel time-bound to specific reading or events (Obama inauguration, anyone? I know... shame on me, and my blogging license is again under review...).

Anyway, just wanted to reassure you that I'm still here... and to give myself permission to move on... consigning with some regret (and also some relief) all those undoubtedly brilliant and eminently bloggable thoughts to the shadowy realm of the un-posted...

Besides, I've got some work - and a whole lot of reading - to do.

4 Comments:

At 11:38 PM, Blogger Colleen Taylor said...

I can soooo relate ... to every single thing you've said here.

 
At 3:51 PM, Anonymous joseph said...

"I've never understood it when people tell me they have no time to read."

I see from your bio that you have one child... ;^) Personally, I've always understood when people tell me they have have no time to read.

(father of 4 & 1 of those with special needs)

blessings,

 
At 5:01 PM, Blogger Bryan Moyer Suderman said...

Indeed, indeed... point very well taken...! Thanks for adding your thoughts.

 
At 6:15 PM, Anonymous joseph said...

Bryan, since all of them are under the age of 10, we do have lots of time for music, though!

 

Post a Comment

<< Home