"Immersion in the life of the world, a willingness to be inhabited by and to speak for others, including those beyond the realm of the human, these are the practices not just of the bodhisattva but of the writer." --Jane Hirshfield

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

One in four read no books...

According to an AP poll. Article from Forbes.com.

And the rest didn't read that many, apparently:
The survey reveals a nation whose book readers, on the whole, can hardly be called ravenous. The typical person claimed to have read four books in the last year - half read more and half read fewer. Excluding those who hadn't read any, the usual number read was seven.
Do they get extra credit if one of the books was Harry Potter VII?

This year, I decided to keep count of all the books I read (and movies seen, but that's another post). My total so far is 50, but keeping a list makes me competitive about it, makes me try to read as many as possible. Does it slow my writing down? Well, that's another possibility, but I'm sure I won't keep this pace up forever. Think of it as a reading vacation.


ana said...

However many books I read, it's never as many as I think I should. Or as highbrow.

Zen of Writing said...

It's that Catholic guilt! Oh wait, that was the previous post.

ERiCA said...

LOL. I just started keeping count this year, too.

The second I made the list public on my blog, I was instantly hyper-conscious about it. Not so much the quantity (I've got around the same amount as you) as the alleged quality.

Like Ana said in her comment, the majority of the books I read are not highbrow by any stretch of the imagination.

But I think that's okay!

I read for entertainment. If the book entertains me, I'm happy. And if it doesn't, I try to learn from it, by analyzing what went wrong.

...and once in a while, a "quality" book even sneaks in... ;-)

Zen of Writing said...

Most of what I read is probably "middlebrow" -- not Ovid in the original Latin, just literary and not-so-literary books, some commercial fiction. I'm not that interested in writing for *very* few people, but I try to be a little selective, learn something about writing, about character.

Plot-driven fiction isn't my thing, but I love it when a well-written book makes me laugh out loud.

Raspberry said...

I was curious to see how much I read so I started a list this year as well. Some I'm proud of and others I don't really talk about. Either way, it's interesting to see how many and how fast I read.

So sad that most in our society miss out on so much of the world by not reading.

Zen of Writing said...

I agree. I can't imagine not reading.