SDThe pressures of Ms. Prose notwithstanding (yes, she has a point; she’s just sending me in the wrong direction), my goal with this blog was to slow down my reading. To allow myself to digest what I am reading. To pause and enjoy each story for itself, as a journey instead of a notch on my bookshelf. Though it may not seem like it, I have actually slowed down considerably.

I still read a lot because reading is what I love to do. It’s what relaxes me; it keeps me sane. It makes all that time spent inside my own head not only normal but productive. I used to think I was weird, but I’m beginning to realize I’m not abnormal. Just perhaps in the wrong profession. I’m sure I would love to hang out with popular fiction writers (except Robert B. Parker who is a notorious – and arrogant – non reader. Could be why his books stink). Earlier this week I read an article about J.K. Rowling and her words only solidified my love for her:

“I never need to find time to read. When people say to me, ‘Oh, yeah, I love reading. I would love to read, but I just don’t have time,’ I’m thinking, ‘How can you not have time?’ I read when I’m drying my hair. I read in the bath. I read when I’m sitting in the bathroom. Pretty much anywhere I can do the job one-handed, I read.”



Part of reading is, of course, re-reading. There is so much to read that re-reading often feels like a chore, or a luxury ill afforded, but it is important and necessary (p.s. for a good book on re-reading check out this book). Jesse and I have made note that we aren’t going to reread for this blog unless it makes sense in the context of current events. We also agreed that we would try to be more timely about our posts. For these reasons (and one other important one I’ll get to in a second) I picked up Stardust Thursday morning for my commute in (which is just one example of how writing this blog has informed my reading choices as of late. Mostly to my advantage.).

OK but here’s the real reason. I’m embarrassed that despite my intense loyalty and love for Mr. Gaiman, I watched the trailer for Stardust the movie (which opens August 10th) and couldn’t remember much about the story except the basics (falling star, evil witches, evil lord, boy on an adventure). This wouldn’t have happened to Jesse; he’s a better reader. Though he might have taken several weeks to read this book (any book), he would remember the story whereas I read it and it inevitably (and soon!) gets lost among the avalanche of the books  that succeeded it.

The great thing about a Gaiman book is that it can suit any kind of reader. Slow(er) readers can thorougly enjoy his vivid language and nuances (and very witty asides, of which there are many). Faster readers can barrel through his intricate plots and still (somehow) follow along. Either way his stories flow like strong currents, and a reader of any speed can effortlessly swim through the pages, often surprised that they are already finished.

The other great thing about a Neil Gaiman story is that it somehow works its way into you, without you even knowing it and then it sits there waiting for you to remember it or for the spark of another story to ignite the memory. I had forgotten this and happily, within a chapter I remembered almost the entire story, making the re-read irrelavant.

I read it anyway.