Besides being the year of D.E. Stevenson, 2010 is quickly becoming the year of the books I can label DNF - Did Not Finish. I've been casting things aside left and right.
I just like this cactus picture I took.
My personal revelations and goals for this blog have carried over into my reading in a big way. The older I get, the more I read, the more I expect from my books and the less of a chance I am willing to give a book that I consider to be sub-par. I want to read great books, amazing and moving books, that entertain or give me insight or just plain take me away. Friends, I have lost patience.
In years past I would plod through a book that I wasn't thrilled with. I'd sigh and moan and by the end, look at it with loathing. At least I finished the darn thing. Now I know that is no way to read.
How do I decide what I'm going to finish and what I'm not? I like the idea of the 50 page rule I read somewhere: Give it 50 pages to see if you like it. If you're over 50, do some subtracting and give it less pages. Presumably, you have even less time available in this lifetime for bad books. Often though, I don't even need 50 pages. One chapter can be enough to know I don't want to spend 350 pages with this story.
Sometimes it takes longer. A month or so ago I whined that nothing I was reading was catching my fancy. Kay told me to cast them all aside. What good advice! I stopped reading a 600+ page book 250ish pages in. I gave up on a 400 page book 150 or so pages in. The library books, I don't so much care about, but I get annoyed by the ones I've spent money on. How could you sell me this lousy book!
It's easy to tell when you've made the right decision about giving up on a book. It's when you look at it after you've decided and you feel great relief. A sigh of calm. You don't ever have to go back to that if you don't want to. There's a great book, and it's just around the bend. Or in that pile in the corner.