Tuesday, January 4, 2011

The New Year

Everyone seems to be doing a "Plans for 2011" post, and I'm tempted to go with some of my favorite bloggers and say the plan is to not plan. This is going to be a VERY busy year, what with graduating law school (hopefully) and taking the bar (and hopefully passing).

But I think my plan will be somewhere in the middle - I will make no plans about what I'll read or how much I'll read, but I will keep better track of what I read. I'll blog more, keep my Goodreads updated and I'll keep my own stats spreadsheet.

Also, the more I think about it, I'd like to make some plans too. There's the Modern Library's 100 Best Books of all time. I've read about 15 of them. Embarrassing. Also, there's that list making its way around Facebook - something the BBC allegedly released - a list of 100 books or so. I've read a lot more of those (more like 53), but still they are all good suggestions and most have been on my TBR list for a long time.

Finally, my own TBR list is almost 1500 books long. That's ridiculous. My goal in the next month is to whittle it down into something more manageable - like 500 books. And I am going to be better about what I add to the list - I only want to add books that I actually want to read. I have always been a people pleaser, even in my reading. I have been guilty of reading to please others, and that cannot happen. I will read what I want, when I want. (But I'm always open to suggestions from close friends and family!)

And while I'm thinking about it, I'm going to have a little rant. When some of my fellow law school classmates hear that I read for *gasp* pleasure, I always get this condescending look and a sharp intake of breath from the person, followed by some variant of this statement: "I wish I had time to read for pleasure in law school." The insinuation is that I must be slacking in school or I must not care about my studies. I resent that. I work really hard. Reading is my thing. It's what I do to relax. If I didn't read something other than the (mostly) dry, dense material for classes I would want to kill myself.

Also, if that person really wanted to read for pleasure, he would. If reading is part of your life, or was part of your habits before law school, it should remain part of your life and habits. It is so incredibly important to take time away from the stress of school and the turgid monotony of reading case law. Some people jog (not me!), some people watch movies (I do that too) and others drink a lot (ok, ok, I do some of that too).

The point is that it is all about priorities. One of my priorities is reading, so I make time for it. If reading was a real priority for these people, they would have time to read. And this year reading is going to be even more of a priority for me.

Current reads:

1984 by George Orwell - listening on tape in 30 minute increments while driving to work.

Shalimar the Clown by Salman Rushdie - reading before bed.

Gulliver's Travels by Jonathan Swift - for my book club at school!

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