July 9, 2009

Read What You Want

I am such a huge fan of reading lists that I've kind of overwhelmed myself with lists of books that I want to read. I have a "classics" list, and a "new classics" list, and an "ultimate teen" list plus the list that I kept while I was in grad school and had no time to read for fun but wanted to keep track of all the books that my fellow future librarians recommended. Whew! It turns out it takes a whole lot longer to read a list of books than to write or print it out (who knew). I also get frustrated because I'll be following a list and then want to read something off the list that just came out or was just recommended and I have guilt about it. Then I get stuck in indecision. Ugh.
I know it's a very petty problem to have, so I do sometimes have to remind myself that the world will not end because I read a few books "out of order". I recently found a quote by Samuel Johnson that says:
"A man ought to read just as inclination leads him; for what he reads as a task will do him little good."
While I think that assigned reading for a class may be an exception to that, I'm going to try to remember his words when I get caught up in silly fretting over what to read next. I'll read just as I'm inclined. The trick will be to figure out what I'm inclined to read.

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