The Year of Not Reading or Writing

Based on the results from 2018, I set an ambitious goal for this year’s Goodreads reading challenge—52 books or one per week.

At this point, the third week of August, I would need to have read 33 books to be on track. I have read 19. I’m actually lagging behind last year’s pace, when I managed to read 40 (with a goal of 32). To hit 40 I’d need to read 21 books in about 17 weeks.

That ain’t gonna happen unless I cheat and read a bunch of 50,000 word NaNoWriMo novels.

Why am I reading so much less this year?

Before answering that, I’ll note that my writing has stalled out, too. I’ve been keeping up on the blog, but the fiction writing has sputtered like a campfire in a rain shower. In the last few months, even the blog writing has suffered.

So here it is, the latter half of August and I’m not reading much and I’m not writing much.

Why?

The answer is: It’s not any specific thing, it’s a series of things. Mostly it’s me.

As ridership continues to increase, it is increasingly rare that I get a seat at the start of my morning commute (which begins with a 30+ minute train ride), so I don’t start reading until I get a seat, as I am not comfortable reading while standing up. I could read while standing, so this is kind of on me. But it still means I don’t read as much.

But there are days where I could read and don’t, I just put on my headphones and try to blot out the sound (and world).

I sometimes read at home, but it’s rare.

For the writing, I enjoy the irony of The Journal, my unfinished novel, in which the protagonist struggles with writing, knowing all the ways to get going, knows that you don’t wait for the muse to arrive, that you make time to write, that you sacrifice and force yourself to do it.

And then still struggles. As I do. Why? Ennui? Laziness? I’m not really sure, anymore.

Also, I’ve been playing a lot of City of Heroes again and until the shine of that wears off, it will continue to occupy a chunk of my free time (I had a seven year gap where I didn’t play after the game was shut down).

There are other things I intend to do—draw me, look into meditation, stretching and more—and I dabble, but ultimately don’t follow through.

Maybe I just suck at time management.

I’ve looked at time management apps and have yet to find one I really like and click with. Maybe I’ll look again. I’ll just pencil the search into my current non-existent time management/to-do app, ho ho.

Anyway, I’m writing this on my lunch break and running out of time, so I need to wrap up in some clever way or come back to this later. Or both.

Or neither.

More later tonight. For real. (Probably.)

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