In my book, ‘Diary of the Miaha’ (Read Leonard’s review here), I talk about my relationship with books. So I won’t be talking about the impact of reading here –you’re probably swamped with that information anyway! What with all the reading resolutions we’ve drafted for 2020!
I read about 57 books in 2019 and I suspect they’re more. This is the highest I’ve done in year, although I’ve not always been documenting. I congratulate myself for that, and it only seems natural that I should endeavour to read more books this year. Well, no. I’m dropping the number target for a few reasons.
Reading Sunny Bindra’s article; I read 80 books in 2019, I asked myself, is there ‘too much’ reading? I don’t know. But I know what reading ‘so much’ in 2019 did to me:
- It sort of paralyzed my writing. I would read on and on and on and feel like I was writing, but only in my mind.
2. I was intoxicated. I suffered terrible hangovers; especially reading Non-Fiction. I would hunt and hunt and end up doing very little about the information I gathered. It developed into a little addiction which made me feel that my solutions were in the next book. I became so good (theoretically) but not practically because…
3. I read even when I should have been writing. Now my writing sounds like the tired and boring ‘How are you-Fine’ greeting.
So, this year, I’ve decided to read a little less but more intentionally. To actually set reading targets, so that I don’t ‘overdo’ it and interfere with my writing. I’ll be making more notes/writing gripping sentences/marking paragraphs as I read. Obviously, this might slow me down a little. But of course, there will be books I will speed read. I will allow myself to savour; to reflect; to feel deeply a character’s journey or struggle. To let the books live in me. I also want to do more re-reads.
I’m developing my reading list thematically and by author – based so that I’m not just a tangatanga reader but an expert on say, Euphrase Kezilahabi’s writing (May his soul rest in perfect peace). Sounds fancy, yeah? Book people should also be allowed to be fancy *wink*
Other than books, I also wish to read more blogs, journals and newspapers as well as Facebook posts I hardly read past the ‘Long Post Alert’ (Yeah, I know). There’s a lot of good writing over there as well. And oh, there’s my husband who wishes that I ‘read’ him as dedicatedly as I do books. He’ll get a fair share on my reading list.
Most importantly, I desperately wish to review(and open up this space for more reviews on Kenyan books, especially those that many have no idea exist. A review every week is the target (I need prayers please).
Would you like to write a book review for this blog? You are absolutely welcome.
Are there books you’d wish reviewed? Kindly hit me up at firstname.lastname@example.org
Let’s review this at the end of the year, majaliwa. What are your reading goals this year, by the way?