Thursday, May 10, 2012

Books I Want: Hooray Libraries!

I have not been reading enough. I intend to remedy this.

As a writer, one of the most important things for me to do is to keep reading. I need to see how other authors have done it in the past - how they've created worlds, characters, suspense, phrases, plot, and words. Aside from actually writing, it is the single most important way to improve my abilities.

I have read a total of six books this year - that's just more than one book per month. It's kind of pathetic compared to my usual track record. Along with that, I've had a pretty terrible case of reading apathy since the last book I finished. Thankfully, yesterday I got back into it again with Jem by Frederik Pohl, which won the National Book Award - one of few science fictions to do so.

But this book will only last me so long. Part of the reason I've been reading less is my new job, I think - it's the first bookstore I've worked at that doesn't have a check-out policy for its employees. Yes, I could take something home, but it's highly discouraged, and as a new employee, I don't want to put my employment at risk. (No, I would not get fired for something like that, but these are uncertain times. If I can avoid getting frowny faces from my boss, I will do so.)

What does all that mean? It means freakin' finally going to the library to check out a book. I've had a library card since we moved here, and I still haven't used it on books. For shame. I plan to check out a whole slough of books once I finish Jem, and hopefully one or two of them will stick.

Things I plan to bring home (provided the library has them) include:

Home by Marilynne Robinson

Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close
Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer

Passage of Darkness: The Ethnobiology of the Haitian Zombie
Passage of Darkness by Wade Davis

Kwaidan: Stories and Studies of Strange Things
Kwaidan by Lafcadio Hearn

Hopefully, this will get me back into the glorious habit of reading again.

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