Books, January.

There are more books waiting to be read than I am happy with, January.

When I’ve got writing projects, I have a hard time focusing, even though I can only write a couple hours each day, if that. I struggled at the beginning of this quarantine time to have brainspace for reading, then that went away, but it is back now. I wonder sometimes if I have ADD. I do.

I’m in the middle of 45 different conversations with people, that are all in my head. The real number there is maybe 5. But still, that is plenty.

And there is a bag of Cool Ranch Doritos over there that is calling for me, even though my teenager and I just feasted on some lovely scrambled eggs.

The coffee is weak today and I have no one to blame.

I spent a lot of time in class last week thinking about personal integrity. How to live within one’s own sense of that. Having standards, and the like. I think sometimes I confuse being non-judgemental with giving wide and fast permissions to any kind of treatment of myself.

For instance, I have dated all kinds of people. Tall, skinny, tubby, handsome, not especially handsome. I don’t judge a man by the size of his penis, or his belly. it is character, compatibility, fun.

And in that ‘remaining nonjudgmental’, I can do too much compromising, and I get out of line with my integrity. I want to be treated a certain way, and how far will I let that go before my whole body reacts like a coo-coo bird, shutting the door with a clap?

Integrity. How do I line up with my own standards? What the hell are my own standards? I know I have a lot of fear about a lot of things. (i understand vaguery very well, see?) I cannot let that run the race.

But lets get back to books, see? Because it is another place I am out of alignment. The books are piling and I am not reading. Let me show you what I’m trying to read, and what is waiting for me, and what i am excited to investigate, while I percolate on my ideas about my own integrity.

OK! GO! always and forevermore, be in love with OK! GO!. (together in the chrysalis.)

but okay, here we go.

  1. The Invisible Life of Addie Larue. VE Schwab. This one I have started and its rich with possibility. Addie made a deal with a devil to escape a trap of a marriage, and now she’s just about immortal, but no one can remember her beyond a few minutes. Imagine that.
  2. Boule de Suif, Guy de Maupassant. My father-in-law brought this over to me when I wasn’t terrified of killing him and wanted me to read a particular story. I can’t remember which one now so I’ve got to read the whole thing. Its a series of short stories, and the copy i have is an old red-covered thing with beautiful endpapers and I’m vaguely in love with just holding it, and telling people i’m reading Maupassant.
  3. To Night Owl from Dogfish. Goldberg-Sloan and Wolitzer. A series of letters back and forth from two girls whose dad’s are getting married. YA, I think. Haven’t started it because brain fog, nut house. But! My friend Laura who is a reading maniac, and also writes a mean and fantastic review has recommended it and so I’m awaiting its pickup with baited breath.
  4. Waiting for a Star to Fall. Kerry Clare. My god, i shame myself. I still haven’t read it. I shame myself. But I know how much I like her writing, so I know some of what awaits me. For good goddamn, kate, get on it.
  5. And last but not least, The Adult Years, by Frederic Hudson. Sigh. This is for my coaching class, and my choice to read, and I’ve started it, and I will appreciate it once I get into it, but for now, it just sits there. waiting for me to adult, i think.

Guys, thats just the pile i want to get to first. How can I call myself a reader if I am not, in fact, reading?

It all comes back to integrity. Who the hell do I think I am, man?

low light photography of books
Photo by Suzy Hazelwood on

4 thoughts on “Books, January.”

  1. I wasn’t reading at all. During this pandemic I somehow thought that busy was better than still. I now pair my reading habit with something else I love (and do every day) and I have read every day in January. I pair drinking my morning protein shake (which I really love) with reading. I don’t set how much time I am going to read or any other rules, I just do it. The only rule is it has to be a book, not news, not crap on my phone, just read a book. I couldn’t be more thrilled. Hope this helps in some way.

  2. Ok. I know I have a horse in this race… But truly, I think you should start with To Night Owl From Dogfish. 1) When I am having trouble focusing, turning to juvenile fiction has always been a bridge to “more serious” reading. And, yes, it is written for 8-12 year olds… Which doesn’t mean it’s not weighty, but the weight is delivered one scoop at a time into your bucket, so you are not overwhelmed by the burden (Have you filled your bucket today?) 2) It’s approachable, and quick to read. Therefore you will devour it quickly and feel accomplished (and maybe be ready to tackle something that requires more focus and attention). 3) Without a doubt, middle grade fiction always ends on a hopeful note… And don’t we always want a happy ending?

  3. Living the questions; needing some discipline. I love reading and feel better going through each day if I know I have a good book to crawl into at night. Still don’t read during the day; seems to be too decadent.

Leave me your words! thoughts! sweat, blood, and tears not really needed but okay, if you want... :)

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