Reading

"Labour without joy is base. Labour without sorrow is base. Sorrow without labour is base. Joy without labour is base."

John Ruskin, Time and Tide, letter V (1867).

"Writing without reading is base."

Me, just now.

Reading is an essential part of writing, and an essential part of my life. I read a lot, but still not as much as I would like. I try to make a point of reading widely and not tie myself to a specific genre. Not everything I read is good, but everything I read is good for me or my work.

52 for 52 in 2017

January
1. On the Lisbon Disaster, by Olen Steinhauer

February
2. Still Writing, by Dani Shapiro
3. The Pigeon Tunnel, by John le Carré
4. Nexus, by Ramez Naam

March
5. The Writing Life, by Annie Dillard
6. A Brave New World, by Aldoux Huxley
7. Norse Mythology, by Neil Gaiman
8. War Stories from the Future, (anthology)
9. All the Shah's Men, by Stephen Kinzer
10. Persepolis: The History..., by Charles Rivers Ed.
11. Crux, by Ramez Naam
12. Margaret the First, by Danielle Dutton
13. Apex, by Ramez Naam

April
14. The Sympathizer, by Viet Thanh Nguyen
15. American War, by Omar El Akkad

May
16. Deep Work, by Cal Newport
17. Sleeping Giants, by Sylvain Neuvel
18. Waking Gods, by Sylvain Neuvel

I've never cracked the goal of reading 52 books in a year. I always slow down during some part of the year and end up around 30+. This year is going to be different.

On the Lisbon Disaster, by Olen Steinhauer Still Writing, by Dani Shapiro The Pigeon Tunnel, by John le Carré Nexus, by Ramez Naam The Writing Life, by Annie Dillard Brave New World, by Aldous Huxley Norse Mythology, by Neil Gaiman War Stories from the Future, Anthology All the Shah's Men, by Stephen Kinzer Persepolis: The History..., by Charles Rivers Ed. Crux, by Ramez Naam Margaret the First, by Danielle Dutton Apex, by Ramez Naam The Sympathizer, by Viet Thanh Nguyen American War, by Omar El Akkad Deep Work, by Cal Newport Sleeping Giants, by Sylvain Neuvel Waking Gods, by Sylvain Neuvel

The world through books

What's better than an overly ambitious goal? Why two overly ambitious goals of course! I want to read a book from, about, or related to, every nation on earth. I'm not going to be too picky about my selection criteria here. The books I read can be both fiction and non-fiction, but I'm probably going to lean more towards non-fiction. There is no deadline on this project. But at 5 books per year it would take roughly 40 years. I have of course read some books already, and they might go up on the list as soon as I remember the relevant ones.

I haven't made up my mind about various sovereignty disputes. I figure I can put those decisions off for at least 35 years.