Lessons Learned

There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate’s loot on Treasure Island. -Walt Disney

With the 30 Day Book Challenge now done and dusted, I find myself missing the daily mission of scouring my bookshelves and digging deep into the recesses of my mind in a hunt to find the appropriate book for each task.  It was a literary treasure hunt for my book-lover mind, and I took great pleasure in reliving my reading history and rediscovering what books mean to me and the influence they’ve had on my life.

Throughout the challenge I contentedly reacquainted myself with some old favourites, relived memorable childhood reading moments, and crooned over some literary heartthrobs.  I confessed some secrets, pledged my eternal allegiance to a certain author, and had many an inner battle in futile attempts to choose ‘favourites’.

Frankly, I found the whole challenge a wonderful exercise and am happy to see so many of you taking the challenge too.

Before I leave you to it, however, I thought I might share with you the top three things I’ve learned about myself and my reading habits from this literary pilgrimage.

  • I read a lot of fantasy.  I mean, a lot.  I can’t remember the first fantasy book I read, but I do remember my reluctance due to having always associated fantasy with sci fi, which I was not at all interested in.  Even after having read a few fantasy novels, all of which I surprised myself in thoroughly enjoying, I recall it taking me a while to actually start looking forward to starting a new one or seeking out more.  For some time I had this unfounded suspicion that something resembling Star Trek was going to sneak its way into my impressionable reading mind, and put me off reading forever.  I’m still not a fan of Star Trek or sci fi, but I now know the differences between the speculative fiction sub genres, and can proudly profess my love of fantasy without fearing pointy-eared men and beam-me-up-scotty’s scaring me away.
  • My memory is as poor as I suspected.  I anticipated the challenge would be difficult for this reason, and truly it was.  I’m certain I’ve forgotten a great deal of the books I have read and am positive that many of them could have been used over the course of the 30 Day Book Challenge.  I have learned my lesson though.  As they say, ‘Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.’  As far as I’m aware, my memory isn’t going to improve any with age, so I’ve set myself an undertaking.  From 2011, I have started a reading list, documenting all the books I have read since the start of the year.  I am particularly interested to see how many it totals up to by December 31st, but mostly content to know that I will have something to refer to in the future.
  • I have a potentially unhealthy obsession with a certain author who has consumed the last several months of my reading life.  I mentioned her or her books in seven out of the thirty posts, have referred to her as She-God, Perfection, Wonderful, and Writing God, and suspect that many of you now believe me to be a Robin Hobb stalker.  I’m sorry about that and deny all such claims.  I am, however, seeking help for this matter and hereafter vow not to mention her name again for some time unless it is profoundly necessary* or unless a substantial Hobb-free interlude has passed.  *Profound necessity could refer to: Author contact; Financial ruin due to Hobb book purchases; Discovering the Farseer characters are real; Collapsing bookshelves due to TMHS (To Many Hobbs Syndrome).

So there it is.  My lessons learned in a nutshell.  Thanks to all of you who commented and participated in the challenge with me.  I’m looking forward to *one day* getting to all the books you’ve recommended, and eagerly anticipate the posts of those of you who are now taking part in the 30 Day Book Challenge.

Happy reading fellow bloggers.

~storytelling nomad~

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15 comments on “Lessons Learned

  1. Well done for sticking with the book challenge. About the reading list, I’ve taken up using Goodreads this year and it’s proving to be a really interesting way of recording what I read. There’s also a tool to set yourself a reading target for the year and it will show your statistics as you go. Might be fun?

  2. Yay! I have trouble remembering everything I’ve read too. When I joined Goodreads, I kept racking my brain for books that I should add to my finished reading list. There are still so many I have yet to recall. That’s one of the reasons I started posting reviews of what I read on my blog–I’ll definitely be able to keep better track. :-D

  3. Well done on the book challenge! I’ve enjoyed reading your posts. I’ve actually started mine today.

    I’ve been keeping a book list for two years now (I have it posted on my blog). It’s been really helpful. I like knowing how much I’ve read, and what I’ve read. Maybe next year I’ll start counting the pages.

  4. I love this post. Kudos on accomplishing your challenge goal. I’m still waiting on the new covers to Hobb’s Farseer trilogy because at this point I simply cannot concede and buy the original editions. In a way I’ve become obsessed with a trilogy I’ve never read (and an author I’m not familiar with!) And that credit goes to you. ;)

    • I can’t believe you still can’t access them! Totally bizarre! I feel like I should apologise for instilling in you this obsession with a trilogy you are unable to read. I only hope that when you do get the opportunity, that they will meet your expectations! It would be pretty awkward otherwise… lol

      • Granted, I can get the old editions without a problem. Sooo it’s really my fault for holding out. I think those new covers just aren’t available in the U.S. for some reason. But definitely do not apologize! I’m glad to know of other readers’ obsessions. And I really do like the look of the trilogy. I will let you know once I finally read it. :)

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