I started to read A Game of Thrones last year but due to work commitments I have not read a single word in over two months. I have said it before that when time is limited we have to prioritise aspects of our life and for me it was clear that reading and writing were two such things. But then, when we think about it, sometimes we take the easy option and remove those things that we love but we need to think about to achieve. I am starting to realise that reading and writing are two of these things for me. When I have spent a long day teaching, prepared lessons for the next day, cooked tea, put my son to bed and prepared my bag for the next day I feel truly shattered. My first thought is, ‘I wonder if there is anything on TV to crash in front of?’ At this point of the day anything that involves words feels like more of a burden than a joy. That was until I joined a book club at work. One person put out the suggestion of forming a club and eleven of us replied. From talking to some of the other members it seemed that not having enough time to read was an issue and joining the book club was an attempt to alleviate this and force ourselves to read.
So far we have only read one book, ‘We are Called to Rise’ by Laura McBride. The first thing I noted, and you may have done the same thing if you have read any of my work or parts of this blog, was that this was not my kind of book. However, like the open minded person I like to think I am, I went for it! We actually started it over Christmas but the new Star Wars film was out so I re-watched the six previous ones in-between yule tide with the family instead. However, I did start reading it in January. And you know what, it was a truly awful book. Well it was probably a good book to some people but I really did not like it. If you don’t believe me read my Goodreads review! But that was not the point, the point was that I had read something I would never pick up, something I would never even think about opening. More impressively I read it in three weeks and I consider myself a slow reader, one of those that needs to read every word and mull over even minute plot device. Yes, me, the one who spends months on a book read it in less than one! So maybe it was me taking the easy route all along. I was tired most of the time I read that book. It was late at night but I did it and I manage to work just as well as I always do and spend as much time as I always do with my family. But for me the biggest change is that I have started to get excited about writing again. If you have read previous post you will know that I always set myself writing targets that I spectacularly fail with so I set myself the simple target this year of doing some writing and, you know what, I have done some already! I have picked up that Movember story I never finished in time for Movemeber and I have added a few hundred words. Ok that is not much but it is a lot more than before I joined the book club. Even more, I am now inspired to finish it.
There is that saying that great writers read and I truly believe this. I do not believe I am a great writer, far from it, but the process of reading has made me want to write again. I am so pleased I said, ‘yes I want to join.’ So maybe there is something inspiring in this little mundane story for us all, what I would like to say to you is go for it and think about whether you are putting things off because you don’t want to do them or it is the easy option. For me it was clearly the easy option but writing is something I love doing. That said, it is still down the pecking order of things that need to be done but at least it is on my radar again. What’s more, we are now reading ‘Neverwhere’ by Neil Gaiman and that is right up my street!