Reading, More or Less (Pt. 2)

January 16, 2011

Part 2: Reading Less

“Actually, reading is both a blessing and a curse.  It is one of the finest and most ingenious inventions of the human mind.  Used selectively it is a marvelous aid to growth.  But it can be overused until it dominates our lives, acting as a consumer of time that should be used for direct, firsthand experience.  With many of us, reading is an addiction.  We get the reading habit and it stifles our real lives.”
     — William S. Coperwaite, A Handmade Life: In Search of Simplicity

“Reading, after a certain age, diverts the mind too much from its creative pursuits.  Any man who reads too much and uses his own brain too little falls into lazy habits of thinking.”
     — Albert Einstein

“My days are not lived so much as wasted in compulsive reading.”
     — Kathleen Norris, Acedia and Me

My current pile of library books

I am addicted to reading.  Perhaps someone should stage an intervention.  When I was growing up, one of my mother’s common refrains was, “Get your nose out of that book.”  Now that I am a grown woman and in charge of my own life, I too often indulge my passion for reading to the detriment of other areas of my life. 

My problem is that my reading list mushrooms.  I decide to take a trip, so must research guidebooks, travel writings, and literature about the destination.  I read a nonfiction book, and the author mentions other interesting titles, which I add to my list.  I follow many fiction authors, and they release a new book every year, which I must read.  As I do my job at the library, an intriguing title or cover catches my eye, and I add that book to my list.  My friends recommend even more books.  And on and on. . .

7 Responses to “Reading, More or Less (Pt. 2)”


  1. I love this post. The quotes are perfect! I too always have a stack of books at home and the max allowed on hold. I love the library! Finding time to read them is the problem for me.

  2. Sandy Bessinbgpas Says:

    Your stack is bigger than mine. Its Sunday, a day of rest. What better way to spend the day than to open a good book. Its snowy out and zero degrees, so I’m going to curl up be the fire with a cup of tea and a good book-which one shall I choose?

    • Rosemary Says:

      What ARE you reading right now? I’m reading this year’s Newbery-award winning book, MOON OVER MANIFEST. I love it — it’s one of those books with a plucky young heroine that takes place during the Great Depression in Kansas. Another title to add to your list!

  3. Margaret Says:

    Whoa – those people have it right! Somehow reading always seems like such an indulgance. I too, remember walking home from the bookmobile in the summer and wanting to get to the pleasure of reading, despite Mom’s admonitions to get outside or to do some chore. The library is a dangerous place!

  4. Lorraine Says:

    Oh, yes! The old “nose in a book” comment– wish I had a dollar for every time I heard that one! The bookmobile was my favorite thing ever– I can still smell it! I thought life could not get any better– then they built a branch library in my neighborhood and that was truly bliss!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: