Monday, June 20, 2011

A Tortoise Reader

I'm a slow reader. This is a trait that never even occurred to me before I entered the blogosphere. It's not that I have a hard time reading, rather I believe it is the opposite. I read like I would speak were I reading the book aloud. It's just the way that makes sense to me. It's the emphasis of the phrase, the nuance of the prose that I savor and yearn for. When the action cranks up so does my lines-per-minutes. And when the piece turns contemplative, so do I. To me, the ups and downs, accelerations and braking are all part of the experience. It's what I paid my ticket price for, so to speak.

 I can read quite quickly when I need to. And I do sometimes. But not too often anymore. And I wonder anymore if I read too slow. I wonder this mostly when I come across another bloggers fabulously long 'Read so far this year" list. And I have like 7 books for an entire fiscal period.

My speed however isn't the only thing that keeps me from racking up the page counts and shifting my TBR pile to my TBR (To Be Reviewed) pile. Another is my time and the hardest to face, is my age. My TBR pile is huge! Much larger than I have recorded on my TBR tab or over at my Goodreads account. And I don't feel like I get to make much headway on it.

My reading habits are partially to blame. As a single mother of 2 teenage girls, I've had a hard time finding my time my own enough to read. Interruptions are usually the word of the day around here, especially while they were younger. When they became High Schoolers things changed a bit but so did some of my priorities. Then my oldest was diagnosed with Leukemia. Believe it or not I've gotten more reading done lately than in the past few years. Hospital time isn't too entertaining. Mostly I head off to bed to read before I go sleep. This time frame is usually rarely more than an hour. I'm trying to squeeze more reading segments in to my day too but that's where my other roadblock comes in.

I'm afraid, afraid down to my very toes in a paralyzed with terror sort of way, that I'm getting old and it's showing in my reading. I...gulp....have a hard time concentrating and remembering what's happening!!  Why??
Of all the cruel twists of fate.To love the stories but not be able to hold onto them. And not just that but since I picked up the habit of only reading before sleep, now every time I read I get sleepy!! Even in the middle of the day! I'm like a literary Pavlov's dog..or cat....or Bunny!! And I hate it! :(

Couple all this with the blogorific desire to compete with at least some of my fellow bloggers for tomes devoured or reviews posted and I wonder if I'm about to cut the fun out of my passion...the written word. I'd hate for that to happen, instead perhaps I'd be better of to take a Tortoise and Hare approach and be content with slow and steady. When I jack rabbit around I never do figure out what's happening.  But when I read as I read, bit by bit, I feel like I've taken time to smell the imagined roses, to look around the world that has been spotlighted for my perusal. It makes each thing I read that much more special to me.

I think I feel an urge to get moving because I want to have more things out there on my blog for my peers to see and read and hopefully comment on and .... oh ok... like me for. And I'm afraid if I'm a slow reader then my fellow book bloggers won't take me seriously or... oh ok... like me.

I do want to pick up the pace somewhat, especially before school starts again and I go non-traditionally chasing my BA. I'll keep trying to pick up a few more minutes here or there and get a little farther in what ever I happen to be reading while the sun still shines. Maybe a chapter at lunch. Read some instead of checking facebook for the 100th time. Perhaps TEACH myself to be alert.  After all even though it's a race with no winners and certainly no losers!!, it can't hurt to keep training!


  1. I think everyone wishes they could read faster. I know that I certainly do!

  2. There is not a single thing wrong with being a tortoise reader and enjoying your hobby. :)