Sunday, January 6, 2013

Reading List for 2013

Not only is 2013 going to be a year of focused writing for me.  It's going to be the year I start reading like I used to before I had kids. 

The bulk of the reading I've done since my first baby was born has been children's books and technical documents and IT certification manuals.  I prefer the children's books. 

This week I have an academic advising appointment for graduate school.  I may be able to start taking classes as early as this month if they have an opening.  If not, I'll be back to school in the fall.  My guess is they'll be expecting that I remember a good percentage of the reading I did as an English major.

But it's been a long time - 22 years - is that possible?  In the last 22 years I haven't slept much.  I had one bad concussion (that I remember).  The details of the literature that I love were replaced with first aid for babies, programming syntax, class libraries, three versions of the .Net framework, SQL query language, SQL analysis services, CPT codes, ICD-9 diagnosis codes, the hospital billing system, charge pathways, and on and on until the only things left are shreds of memories of the literature I love.

*Sigh*

So, today, right now, I'm making a reading list.  Actually I started it yesterday using Goodreads.  My reading list is kind of hilarious.  There are children's books like Peter Pan, non-fiction books on Appalachia, women's fiction, dark comedy screenplays, a lot of Faulkner and Steinbeck, plus a book or two that some of you have written.

Mostly, I intend to read classic literature that I've already read to overwrite the bad sectors in my mind.  I'm hoping the reading will go quickly since it's all stuff I've read before at least once.  I wonder how long it will take before I have a good data restore. 

This might prove I'm crazier than the rest of you, but I dug through my bookshelf and found a fresh copy of The Norton's Anthology of American Literature - Volume D.  It covers the approximate time period of my current novel and includes stories  my characters would have been reading if they weren't isolated on a mountain.

The time period of the anthology is 1914 to 1945.  It includes some of my favorite authors and poets - F. Scott Fitzgerald, John Steinbeck, Ernest Hemingway, William Faulkner, Langston Hughes, Richard Wright, E.E. Cummings, Eugene O'Neill,  T.S. Eliot, Zora Neale Hurston and more.  (Note:  The only name in this list that spellcheck didn't recognize is Zora Neale Hurston.)

The thought of reading their works again, even snippets of them, gives me goosebumps.  It's definitely going to be a good year. 

28 comments:

  1. You can never go wrong reading the classics!

    I'm pulling for you in 2013! :)

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  2. Glad you're getting back into some enjoyable reading. And safe to say I've never read a book about baby care.

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    1. Not books about baby care - children's books like Harry the Dirty Dog and Where the Wild Things Are and Winnie the Pooh - read to the children. My little guy let me read the first two chapters of Peter Pan last night and wants more tonight. I'm in heaven. The other two couldn't stand it.

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  3. Good luck getting into class this semester! Though it might be nice to have a bit of time to reread the classics, eh?

    Lord, my to-be-read stack has dangerously increased since my mad birthday/holiday shopping spree(s). Golly. I'm really beginning to freak out about swinging my day job with reading with blogging and writing.

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    1. I'm sort of thinking waiting until fall when the little guy is five will be better.

      Good for you on the shopping spree for books!

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  4. Oh my, you're taking on something big by going back to school.

    Hugs and chocolate,
    Shelly

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    1. It's just one class at a time one night a week - and most of it is creative writing workshops.

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  5. I'm planning on reading more this year as well. I want to read a short story every day, plus at least one novel every month. I'm currently making my way through Stephen King's Dark Tower series. I'm including all of the books outside of the series that have connections to it though, so it will probably take me the better part of the year.

    Good luck with everything in 2013!

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    1. At first I read that as 'I want to WRITE a short story every day.' Good that you're just reading one. :) I don't like Stephen King's writing style - love some of the movies though.

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  6. A great plan. Sounds like fun. I hit some classics every so often so I know how much harder I need to work on my craft.

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    1. I'm excited after I opened up the Norton's Anthology - so much poetry that I love and had forgotten about. I'm in heaven.

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  7. ohhh...can't wait for some good book reviews!! keep me informed for sure!

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  8. I like to read in the time period, setting or genre of my stories too :)
    I'm also trying to include a lot more indie writers this year, to support my writing buddies.

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    1. Me too. I'm just a little more worried about grad school and having a blank stare on my face.

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    1. Thanks. I think my TV time needs to give a little to make room for it.

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  10. You prefer children's books over technical documents and IT certification manuals? I wonder why!

    If we're not connected on Goodreads, find me! Some of my books are all over the place too.

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    1. I didn't realize you could connect to people on Goodreads.

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  11. I applaud your efforts! It's so hard to remember things from school years long past, especially when children consume your remaining brain cells. :)

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    1. Honestly, I think the one concussion I had 6 years ago put me over. I don't remember what I don't remember but there are definitely some bad sectors.

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  12. I hope your reading list is even better the second time around! Happy reading! :)

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  13. You are off to a good start! Good luck getting through your list!

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  14. Ooh now there's an idea. I really should get back to reading classics. Really should look into it for this year. :-D

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  15. Those are all favorites of mine too. And reading those again in bulk will certainly put you in the mindset of a character from the era. I once read a book called Walking in Wales just so I could hitch a ride with the man who did the walking and try to see through his eyes for how to describe it. Gotta do stuff like that in the name of research! :)

    Also, I recently read Treasure Island. That was a fun classic. The language was a riot. :)

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  16. I wish you great and fantastic reading!

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