When I was growing up, I was a reader. That’s how people described me. I could be content for hours to sit with a book and let myself slide into a world different from my own. I could read in cars without getting carsick. I could read by a window until the light was nearly a memory, not noticing that my face was six inches from the page, and I was squinting, until my parents came into the room and flipped on the light, their eyes aching in sympathetic pain. My bedtime had a built in 1/2 hour reading time. One of the greatest thrills of my life was when we moved to Portland and I finally had my own room. It meant I could sneak the light back on after my parents came in and said goodnight, so that I could read a little longer. I never traveled without a stack of books, and at just about all times, a book could be found on my person.
I remember once, being at a Thanksgiving potluck dinner at the Unitarian church in Portland when I was around 11. I was sitting at a table, waiting for dinner to start, reading a book. I was so absorbed in that book that I didn’t hear Lynn, a past Learning Community (the Unitarian version of Sunday School) teacher of mine, walk up to me and start talking. She had to tap my shoulder three times to get my attention, and when I gave a start that brought me back to the Parish Room, she laughed and said, “I can’t believe that in the noise and bustle of this room you are so totally engrossed in that book.”
I still love books and love to read, but as I’ve gotten older and my life has gotten busier, my dedication to reading has slacked a little. So I’m embarking on a project that involves both books and a blog. It’s My Book Project. I’ve made a goal of reading a book a week for the next year. It has to be a book that I already have in my possession, and one that I’ve never read. Since I have approximately 150 of those in my apartment (and I’m expecting another box of books via media mail from my mom any day), I’m not going to run out of things to read any time soon. I’ve started the accompanying blog because I need some sort of public accountability to keep me going. Also, I want to keep track of the books I read, record the experience and have a record of how the year went when 2007 comes a knockin’. Right now there’s just an introduction to the project up on the blog. I finished the first book last night, and hope to complete the second tonight (it’s a short book).
Please, check it out. I’ll probably post over there a couple of times a week. If you want to read along with me, let me know.