Musing Mondays—July 4, 2011

Musing MondaysThis week’s musing asks

Below is a link to an NPR discussion about the simple fact that there’s no way you can read, see and experience all the things that are available to be experienced. The two methods for dealing with it are culling (i.e., cutting out certain genres that don’t interest you, etc.) or surrender (i.e., just making peace with the facts and enjoying what you can in the time that you have).

http://www.npr.org/2011/06/27/137451477/you-cant-possibly-read-it-all-so-stop-trying

So, do you cull, or do you surrender? Or do you do both?

I think I do a bit of both. I am very selective about which books I will read in certain genres. For instance, my nonfiction reading is almost exclusively limited to history, education, and literature, although if a book looks interesting and doesn’t fall in those narrow confines, I will read it. I am fairly selective about fantasy and sci-fi. I don’t read a lot of it, but I am careful about what I do choose to read in those genres. My favorite genre is historical fiction, so I tend to broaden my scope and will often read historical fiction, even if I don’t think I’m interested in the subject. I have too often discovered that I can become interested if the book grabs me.

I set a goal to read 50 books this year. I keep a to-read list. I can feel the pressure to read as much as I can before I can’t read anymore, but I have also accepted that I just won’t be able to get to everything that is good and worth reading. So I also have made peace with the idea that the article calls “surrender.” Life is too short to read bad books, but I am determined to enjoy the ones I have time to get to.

2 thoughts on “Musing Mondays—July 4, 2011

  1. Thanks so much for this link. I used to listen to NPR all the time in the car, but now I just listen to books. -grin-

    I had a similar discussion with friends recently. If I never buy another book (like that's going to happen), I will never be able to read all the books I want to read. Heck, I might not even be able to get to all the books in my home library.

    I have to say I find that very depressing. Right now I am reading a Robert J. Sawyer book which is excellent, but it is not what I had planned to read next. That is the problem. I keep finding out about more and more books I want to read and I can never keep up.

    I also spend a lot of time rereading series books. When a new title is released, I like to reread the previous ones so I can remember what is going on. That is really a problem with series which have numerous titles.

    I'm going back to my book. Just thinking about this is too depressing.

    1. It is rather depressing, isn't it? I was culling books that I might be willing to donate for PaperBackSwap, and I kept saying, "Oh, I think I might read that one; better hang on to it." Then this pessimistic other voice in my head said, "*Sigh* Just get rid of it. You'll never pick it up. You know you won't."

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