I’ve felt a touch overwhelmed a few times with my reading this month. See, I’ve completed all of 2 books so far this month, and that’s likely the way January will end. When, in 2010, I averaged 8 books per month. (In 2009: 7.4 per month.)
While I wouldn’t say I’ve spent a ton of hours reading, this month, I don’t think it’s been that much less time than normal, although it may fall a little short.
I’m placing the blame squarely on the shoulders of all the books I’m in the middle of. I kind of forced myself away from my serial book monogamy this month, and that, I think, is why my numbers are short. Specifics? OK.
Before the first of the year I started a collection of P.G. Wodehouse short stories, The Man Upstairs. My thinking was that the short stories would be more easily set aside than a novel, and I wanted to, once it was 2011, start one of the books for my list swap with My Friend Amy — Middlemarch by George Eliot. I wanted to get started immediately on the list books because I know my reading later in the year will be weighed down with other obligations. And I knew Middlemarch was intimidating, if only because of the page count, so I decided to start with it.
- Middlemarch is going great. I’m still not half done with it, but I’m really enjoying it. It’s not the simplest read, is all.
- The Man Upstairs is brilliant, funny. But it’s been ignored for several weeks now.
- Certain Women by Madeleine L’Engle is the latest addition to the in-progress pile; I’m reading it for the Faith & Fiction Round Table discussion, which starts February 6. It, too, is really good.
I really think the multiple-books-going-at-once scenario is part of my reading failure this month. I’ve sworn off the approach in the past, but here I am again, aiming to avoid it, at least.
In the end, though, it’s not about the fact that I’ve only completed 2 books in 30 days. Nope. Instead, it’s more about the fact that I want to be OK with that. I’m meeting my commitments, my obligations and promises. I’m reading good books, that matter to me, and I’m enjoying my reading. Shouldn’t that be enough? I want it to be, for me.
I’m a little scared that I picked poorly on one of my challenge books, though. Maybe Les Miserables was a bit much for 2011?
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