Back in September, I talked about reading all the books I own because I tend to purchase more than I actually read. I did a running count last night, and I’ve read 101 out of 550 of them (excluding Bibles, dictionaries, encyclopedias and cookbooks). This is due to the fact that, in the last month or so, I acquired about 25 books for free from box lots, retiring pastors, and Christmas gifts. It was technically within the parameters I set out, as I didn’t buy any of them with my own money, but it put me in a one step forward, two steps back scenario. So…here’s how this is gonna work.
1) No buying books OR taking free ones. If you buy me one as a gift, that’s OK, but I’m turning you down if you’re looking to unload from your collection or whatever.
2) This will go until Christmas Day, so that gives me 358 days (or 51 weeks) of reading. In that time, I think it’s reasonable to expect about 100 books read, assuming I can manage 2 books a week. If not, oh well. Note: my original goal was Labor Day, but given my picking up a bunch of books for free, I think it’s only fair to extend my date a little.
3) The goal here is to gain understanding and apply it in some way. I buy books often just so people will look at it and go, “Wow, you own this!?” This is not the best reason in the world to purchase a book, unless we’re talking first editions of classics and such, and those are rare around here anyway. I want to take away greater knowledge and understanding from what I read. That being said, I’m going at this for no more than 3 books at time, and that only in the event that the other two books are short or really easy to read. Otherwise, keeping a pace of two at a time is reasonable enough for me. I have to read the whole thing at a normal pace, without skimming. I also would like to sharpen my actual reading skills during this time as well.
4) This blog is going to be a place for books reports, in a way. I’ll update every so often on my progress through whatever I’m reading, starting this Wednesday. I have the day off, so I’m going to catalog all the books I own (that could take awhile), give the blog here a new look, and, hopefully, start off on something new. I’ve got three books I’m sort of cycling through right now: Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (the whole collecton), by Douglas Adams (been kind of reading that series on and off); Man Is Not Alone: A Philosophy of Religion by Abraham Heschel, and the last book I bought, Fear and Loathing On the Campaign Trail ’72 by Hunter Thompson. Lord willing, I can be done with Heschel before Wednesday and back on track with Adams.
5) Here’s where you, my loyal readers, come in. If you’ve read the book before, I want your input and insights on things I’m reading (but don’t be a tool and give things away either). If not, I encourage you to jump in and give your thoughts on things I bring up!
6) As I have just decided, all of this will take place on my old blog, nietzschesdownfall.wordpress.com. It’s been in need of some attention anyway. So what’s going to happen with The End of Evil? Well, nothing really. Given that we’re coming into an election year, I’m sure I can pay attention and come up with fresh material here. I’ll keep things up to date and running as much as possible here as well as there, but my focus is going to be there and not on nonviolence as much (though that will come up in conversation.
I think that about covers it. Talk to you guys Wednesday!