6 October 2015 28 Comments
Because i’m terrible at quitting books (more on that later), this list is mostly a list of bookish habits I already have, am trying to, or plan to, quit. I find it harder to consciously make an effort to stop doing things, i’m more likely to just phase something out as I get less bothered about it. Or, the opposite, and just do more things instead of stopping anything i’m already doing.
But anyway, on with my quitter list.
Terry Pratchett – As I write this I have less than 50 pages left of the first discworld novel. I won’t go into details, because I sure as hell will in the review i’ll write in a day or so. I’m just… disliking it enough to know I won’t be reading any more.
Caring about the condition of books – This is something I have slowly managed to quit. It started off gradually with spine cracking and the like, but has now escalated to marking passages with a pencil. Considering I used to place books in sandwich bags before taking them out of the house, i’ve come pretty far to now be able to just chuck a book in my bag and not worry about it getting beaten up a little.
Not writing in books – Linked to the above, this is something I want to go further with. I currently add [these kinds of brackets] around passages and lines I particularly like, and mark the corner with a star, for easy reference later. But I want to make notes, write down thoughts and add commentary right there in the book. It will happen.
Buying books on a whim – More often than not, this ends badly. A book might catch my eye because of its cover or its title, and the synopsis sounds fun or intriguing or whatever… but 75% of the time, once I get around to reading it, it just isn’t that great. Instead, I should take a photo of the book to look it up later and read some reviews to figure out if it’s worth parting with the cash for it.
Having high expectations – There have been quite a few books lately that—for reasons I can’t even fathom—i have had very high expectations of. So much so that, when i’ve read them and they’ve been three-star good, i’ve actually been disappointed. I reckon I would actually enjoy these books more if I had little to no expectations of them. Not sure how to go about quitting expectations, but it’s a thing i’m going to attempt.
Finishing books i’m not enjoying – I’m already failing this one by continuing to read The Colour of Magic, but it is exactly books like this that I find difficult to give up on. I’m not loving it, but i’m not really hating it either. It’s passing time easily enough… but I want to want better than that. There are so. Many. Fucking. Books out there, why do I spend time on books that are “okay” when I could be moving on to books that are amazing!?
Not lending books – This links back in to me quitting caring about the conditions of books. I used to worry about the way other people would treat them, but now I don’t care as much. Now, instead, the only thing I worry about is never getting them back! So, a work in progress.
Needing time to read – I have been the kind of person who needs [read: wants] a large chunk of uninterrupted time to myself to read a several long chapters of books. And, while I don’t want to give up needing [wanting] that, I also want to make the most of small moments of time to read, even if it’s only a page or two. I’ve been doing this for a while by reading on the bus to and from work each day, but again, it’s something I want to do more. If I arrive early somewhere, instead of finding something to do for 5 or 10 minutes, I want to read a few pages.
Forgetting about my e-reader – A large part of the appeal of owning so many unread books is looking at them on my shelves and getting that feeling of anticipation. It’s like foreplay for reading. It’s also the reason I don’t use my e-reader anything near as much as I should—i can’t see the books. However, the fact that I keep buying the amazing sounding book sets at Story Bundle, it would be good to actually get around to reading them. So, i need to stop forgetting they exist!
Amazon – I have had a lot of issues with Amazon Logistics delivery service this year. In a word, it’s shit. They have twice left parcels in my household waste bin, once being on the day the bin was being emptied. I complained, of course, and was assured it would never happen again. Then, at the weekend, it did. This time the delivery person left it next to the bin. Not hidden, not safe from the (increasingly bad) weather… just on the floor near the bin. So, Amazon’s promises mean less than nothing—third strike and you’re out. Instead, i’m moving my business to Wordery and Hive.