As I was packing the last of our stuff last week and put July’s books from 100 in 2013 in a box to haul to our new place, I realized I’d only actually had time to read half of one of them. Half. Of one. Of eight.
A few days later I was sitting next to a friend and she commented something about my time and the commitments on my plate currently. “I’m convinced you wouldn’t be so pressed if it weren’t for a certain book project you undertook,” she said wryly. I don’t usually use adverbs after “said,” so you know it must have been said wryly. Point taken.
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At the beginning of this project I said, “I don’t have time to read 100 books in 2013. I didn’t have time in 2012, and I don’t foresee ever having the time to commit to such a project. If you know me at all, you know the possibility of failure is rarely a reason to not try something. Mumbo-jumbo about not setting yourself up for failure has never appealed to me much and so there is a very real possibility that I will hit March or September and get plumb tuckered out. I hope that doesn’t happen, but I won’t feel too badly if it does. The point is, I’m going to try (read full post here).”
Well, here we are, it’s not even August first and I’m plumb tuckered out. And I would like to feel badly about that, but I don’t. Since January I have read 56 and a half books. That might be small peanuts to some people, but it’s a treasure trove to me. I have discovered books that will go down as some of my favorite pieces of literature. I have been challenged, stunned, and bored, I have skimmed, reread, and underlined more sentences than I have since college.
But I’m tired y’all.
Not tired of reading. But tired of consuming. While reading Wendell Berry last month, I realized I wanted to give him my entire attention and I just couldn’t, not at the pace at which I was going. It seems somewhat unfair to take someone’s life work and give them a cursory glance.
So I’m pressing pause on 100 in 2013. I don’t think I’m quitting, but I might get to the end of 2013 and have renamed the project 67 in 2013. It doesn’t have the same ring, but goodness gracious, it’s still more than I’ve ever read in a year.
I know so many of you have loved the short reviews I’ve been doing and I have no plan to stop them. I may not do them monthly, or I may, but with less books, I don’t know. But I will continue to do short reviews as best as I can.
Thanks for following along on this journey—and if you bought me a book for the project that I haven’t reviewed yet, make sure you look back in the coming months—it will show up sooner or later!