There’s a feature on Goodreads to set a challenge to yourself about the number of books you will read in a year. I read a fair amount, and it’s pretty mixed up what I read. I have set myself a challenge so I read more than I did last year, which is a bit under a book every week. I would say a book a week, but with university and reading books like Murakami’s 1Q84, Danielewski’s House of Leaves, or Zizek’s Living in the End Times, that’s unlikely.
If you’re keen to have a look, on Goodread’s I’m machinoir.
I’m always keen to hear what other people are reading, so here are a couple of gems that may appeal to you.
Turning Pro, and The War of Art by Steven Pressfield is a writer of screenplays, and novels, but sat down to give a clear account of his interpretation on what it takes to get things done. Speaking at length on personal hardships and dedication, both books are quick reads that might just get you to harden up and finish those back burner projects.
The Myth of Sisyphus by Albert Camus. Often quoted by others for various reasons, and a book I reread more than any other. I don’t agree with his conclusions in the end, but the arguments in the book are interesting clarifications to a lot of ideas including the lack of meaning in life. Managers take this book to talk about motivating staff I have heard, while others will take more personal meanings.
Junky and Queer by William Burroughs. Burroughs is known for Junky, but Queer is equally good. The books are direct and straight forward writing that are emotionally moving. I tried Burroughs other more postmodern works and was put off by the language, but these novels don’t reflect Naked Lunch and other works.
Post Office by Hank. Bukowski was said to be so easy to read that kids could get through it. The content however is very much adult. In reality this is a man you would absolutely hate, but through his words you are moved from laughter, to horrific sadness, and appalled in the space of paragraphs.
What I Talk About When I Talk About Running by Haruki Murakami. A novelist who used to own a club decided to write about none of those perhaps more exciting parts of his life, and wrote a book about running. Changing from a life of late nights, Murakami talks about his regiment, faults, failings, and ultimately the dedication he has to achieve goals when it would be so easy to give up.
Jimmy Corrigan by Chris Ware. This will take multiple reads to get it all. Chris Ware gives graphic novels a literary quality, with his intensive obsession to detail inked painstakingly on every page, in every footnote, and to each moment. Quite depressing in content, but inspiring in seeing what went into the creation of the work and dedication of Ware.