Thursday, December 15, 2016

My Reading Life

I just finished reading a book called The Little Guide to Your Well-Read Life by Steve Leveen. It's been sitting on my bookshelf for the past ten years. I read it once when I first bought it, and I picked it up again yesterday because I plan to be more intentional about my reading life in 2017.

In the book, the author suggests three actions to take to create a more intentional reading life:

1.  Create a list of candidates (books you want to read) and group them under topics you are interested in. For instance, your topics might be authors you like, places you plan to visit, professional development, biographies, history, etc. Without a reading plan, we tend to read in a random fashion.

2. Keep a list of books you've read that have meant something to you. He calls this a Bookography which is sort of a book biography. You can look back on the list and recommend books to others or give them as gifts.

3. Retain what you read. In order to remember what the book was about and to be able to tell others about it, begin by writing a quick review of the book shortly after you finish it. As you read the book, make notes in the margins and mark pages you want to go back to. Talk about the book with others to help solidify the impact it made on you.

To begin my list of candidates, I will start with the category of Books and Reading. I'm kind of nerdy in that I like to read books about reading. Here are a few to start with:

How to Read Literature Like a Professor by Thomas Foster

You Must Read: Books that have Shaped Our Lives by various authors including Alistair Begg

100 Christian Books that Changed the Century by William J. Peterson and Randy Peterson

A Lifetime of Fiction by William Patrick Martin

Book Savvy by Cynthia Lee Katona

Read This Next by Sandra Newman and Howard Mittelmark

Read it and Eat by Sarah Gardner

Honey for a Woman's Heart by Gladys Hunt

The Maximum Security Book Club: Reading Literature in a Men's Prison by Mike Brottmann

How Reading Changed My Life by Anna Quinlin

The New Lifetime Reading Plan by Clifton Fadiman

My Reading Life by Pat Conroy

How to Read and Why by Harold Bloom

I could go on, but I won't. I need to get reading!

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