Thursday, August 16, 2012

The Importance of Being a Reader...

I'm very excited to have joined an online book club - Edie from Lifeingrace has started one for the classics! It will be great to read along and join in conversation with other like-minded people. So if you are interested, click on the pic below (Edie's gorgeous office/library/laundry room). You can also join the forum to follow along with the conversations - links are in the blog post. It will start in September, so you have enough time to contemplate, decide and order the first book. :)

In Edie's first email/post to introduce the book club, she links to this LA Times article The lost art of reading by David L. Ulin, from August 9, 2009. It highlights the current struggles to sit, focus and read, in today's society. The "book" is now in direct competition with the iPad, texting, the mobile phone, TV, the Internet.

What I'm struggling with is the encroachment of the buzz, the sense that there is something out there that merits my attention, when in fact it's mostly just a series of disconnected riffs and fragments that add up to the anxiety of the age.
The article highlights the importance of refocusing back to books. To quiet the mind, envelope ourselves in the written word, on real pages. Take the time to absorb the different experiences, emotions, and characters books expose us to.

. . . The real world dissolved and I was free to drift in fantasy, living a thousand lives, each one more powerful, more accessible, and more real than my own.
It takes willpower, dedication and commitment to read, especially the classics with their more complex language and subject matter.
In order for this to work, however, we need a certain type of silence, an ability to filter out the noise.
So I am ready to start filtering out the noise, the busyness of my everyday life, to expand the horizons of my mind. Even though I do read and have read a lot of the classics, they are still so many more I wish to experience.  I have not yet read The Odyssey, so as the first book on the list I am excited to start off in the book club with something new and challenging.

What are you reading? Want to join us?

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