An Apocalyptic Awakening…

So according to the Mayans in exactly a year’s time the world ends, or at least a phase of the world as we know it does. I am not sure of my thoughts on this (my main thought is don’t over think it too much) exactly, not much I can do about it if it’s true after all. Yet it did make me think now is as good a time as any to implement the changes I have been mulling over for a while in both my reading life and subsequently my blogging life. After all I am a reader who blogs not a blogger who reads, and there is a difference.

Plotting and planning has been bubbling away for a while. In fact I created a new manifesto for reading as if the world could end at any moment back in August, and promptly ignored it. However the other day I was looking at all the books that I had read in 2011 and while I think it has been a really strong year for fiction looking back through some silly choices on my part, the hype of books, feeling like I really should read certain books and reading the Orange Prize and Man Booker Longlists (which I will admit had some corkers in them if I am sounding grumpy) I actually missed out on lots of brilliant books out in 2011 I should have gotten to instead (oh those ‘should have reads’) and yet didn’t. Shame on me. And that doesn’t even cover the books that I have been ‘meaning to read’ for years or simply saved because I want to read ‘not so good books’ first.

It isn’t just me who saves an authors best novel (according to those we trust) to read last is it? Or the only one to rush out and by a book we really, really, really want to read only to then get home and leave as a treat? Why do we do this?

The other thing I noticed, and again wrote about a while back, is that I have sort of lost where my taste is as a reader. Again this possibly sounds bonkers as our tastes develop and change through our lives, but I do feel I have lost my way. I am often in awe of other bloggers and readers in general who know what their tastes are and in the main stick to them. This doesn’t mean they are boring by any means either.

The main thing I have decided is that over the next twelve months, and hopefully beyond, is ‘Read like its The End of the World’ – I think this will get its own page anyway at some point. This basically means I am going to start reading all the books I have saved for a rainy day and really should have just got on and read, I am going to keep on reading newly released books (though I was a little dismayed when I was flicking through the catalogues of January to July’s publishing catalogues) here are there too but just when they grab my fancy, not because I feel I have to. This in a way links into my ramblings about the relationships between bloggers and publishers, which I still haven’t made up all my feelings on, so I will drop that subject for now as I could go off on a ramble and actually that’s between me and them.

Nothing is going to change instantly, after all I do my reading resolutions on the first of January every year and I have a while to mull it all further before then, but when I finished a book last night I didn’t grab another. I am giving myself a few days of no reading before picking up some books to take to my mother’s over Christmas that I have been saving for a rainy day or as a treat. I am going to greedily gorge myself on books I have been hankering for ages whilst I gorge on turkey (actually we are having goose) and chocolates over the festive break. Hoorah.

Finalised definite thoughts will be announced on January the 1st 2012, until then I will be reading by whim and loving it. What reading resolutions have you made or are mulling over for 2012? Or will your resolution be to just not have any?

14 Comments

Filed under Book Thoughts, Random Savidgeness

14 responses to “An Apocalyptic Awakening…

  1. Pingback: Books of 2012 – The Savidge Reads Advent Calendar Day 21 | Savidge Reads

  2. mine is to read more of my own books less review copies ,also more translations and to hit 150 books I did 132 again this year so that’ll be target to read ,all the best stu

  3. My resolution is to stop buying books and to stop chasing down them down through the library until I’ve read and cleared out some of the huge pile of, mainly crime fiction, books I picked up through Freecycle. If the world’s going to end next year at least I’ll have a clear spare room! As for saving special books for a treat – no way! If it looks good, it goes to the top of the TBR pile.

  4. Ruthiella

    I never make resolutions, because I always break them. I do like the idea of reading all the books you have saved for a rainy day (or the apocalypse, as the case might be). Once I have a book actually on my shelves (not a library book), I loose some of my motivation to read it because I know it will always be there. And it is so easy to get distracted by something else. I love reading book blogs, but they do distract me!

  5. michelle

    I understand what you mean by having the books you most look forward to reading, somehow unread. I tend to do that too. It’s like saving the best for last, and somehow it prolongs the pleasure of the whole “book experience” with that particular book. Something like a long courtship with our beloved book, in a way.
    But like you, more and more so too I am feeling the need to change that approach abit. It will be a pity indeed if we never get to the day which we so imagined is there waiting for us to savour the book.

  6. gaskella

    All these good intentions – even if they only work for a short while before petering out, that’s still an achievement! 😉

    I shall try to get off to a good start just reading from the TBR until April as part of CB James’s TBR Double Dare, (which I achieved last year, but the moment it was up, I read far too many new books again). My main aim shall be to get more books going out of the house than in (I will probably be moving in 2012 to a smaller house). I am making progress with my out of hand TBR – but it’s slow going – hope to speed it up a bit!

  7. Last New Year, I vowed to read from my shelves and not buy a book for as long as possible. I made it to the 4th…how hopeless is that? And I’m guilty of saving much admired books to read for just the right time as a way of rationing them or some sort of delayed gratification episode. The phrase ‘it is what it is’ seems to help most of the time.

    All the best for a very merry Christmas, enjoy your books!

  8. With a baby due on January 25th my reading resolution is to simply read as as and when I can! I think it may be a little ambitious of me to plan anything other than that!

  9. Joan Kyler

    Many of us seem to have the same goal: to try not to get buried in books, although sometimes that seems like a delightful end! Other times, so many books and choices give me reading gridlock.

    I tend to save books that require peace and quiet for better concentration, so there are many classics that I haven’t read. I don’t know when exactly I think I’ll have that ideal reading situation. When I was younger, my concentration was much better and I could fly through classics, and I’m glad I read so many then.

    By the way, I’m enjoying your and Gavin’s podcast, which I discovered through another favorite podcast, Books on the Nightstand. After a year or so of reading your blog, I was thrilled to be able to LISTEN to you!

    Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

  10. Mine reading resolution is to read my own books by joining the TBR Double Dare from January through March and to get through my library hold list (without adding hundred’s of new titles)! Have a wonderful holiday, Simon.

  11. I often read an author’s best book first so that I can get a good sense of their work, but in regards to getting a book and then leaving it, always. And always when I finally end up reading it I tell myself how silly it was to wait. Reading a book you’re excited about when you’re excited tends to make it better.

    Merry Christmas!

  12. Jenni

    Hear, hear! In the spirit of “Read like it’s The End of the World” I’m going to start the year 2012 by reading Peter Høeg’s Borderliners. I own the book and I’ve been wanting to read it for ages, but I’ve been saving it for a rainy day. Just like I’ve been saving the last unread Ishiguro novel, Timothy Findley’s The Wars and all of Joyce Carol Oates’ production. I might even go totally crazy and read Ian McEwan’s Atonement!

  13. No reading resolutions for me (surprise). I have just completed my second year in which I bought no fiction – this is not intended as a smug boast (I expect you are apalled), but just shows how far I can get these days by borrowing. I will admit to having suggested to someone a novel published this year that I’d like to receive on Christmas Day, so we’ll see.

    I hope you have a very Happy Christmas and a calmer, less stressed 2012. Happy Solstice from Dark Puss!

  14. I have to admit I almost solely read by whim. I figure life is too short to read what I think I should read rather than what I feel like/want to read. I read somewhere the average person reads about 3000 books in their lifetime. I want to make them books that I have been drawn too because they appeal to me at that particular point in time.

    Good luck with your reading like its the end of the world, I hope it brings some good books into your world.

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