Read On, MacDuff…

Yes, well, we know we’re misquoting the Bard.

But, should you think that the quote should be “Lead on MacDuff” you would also be in error.

Look it up. It will do you good. That’s what I have to do.

In my continuing 2018 quest to Get Things Done I am now somewhere in the range of 12 out of 50 books read thus far in the year . According to my Goodreads challenge (as of this writing) I am on track.

I recently finished The Story. As noted, I don’t really consider it Scripture. But it’s a good retelling of the Bible story. I am now back into the actual scripture and reading each morning from the Gospels. I don’t include that reading on my reading challenge. So, technically I’ll read more than the equivalent of 50 books, but that’s not the point. My plan is to spend the rest of the year reading and re-reading the Gospels.

Current books still include The Bard and the Bible. That won’t be finished until December 31. It’s a daily devotional guide that talks Shakespeare and scripture and sometimes the connection between the two.

I’m a little more than halfway through No Man’s Land by Simon Tolkien. Simon writes well, but his pattern follows much of his grandfather’s writings…as in a lot of pre-story before getting to what you believe will be the action. For Tolkien fans you’ll understand what I mean when I say that it took almost 300 of a little less than 600 pages to get to Lothlórien. Or, in this case, to the front in World War I. Don’t get me wrong. I’m enjoying the book, I just expected it to get to the war a lot more quickly.

I also picked up Neil Gaiman’s The View from the Cheap Seats: Selected Nonfiction. It’s a collection of Gaiman’s writing and speeches over the years. It’s an easy read, and pretty inspirational for a writer. Okay, it’s also a long read, but I’m appreciating the larger type size and the “bite size” nature of the articles that allows me to move at a pretty steady pace.

Finally, I’m reading…or at least I’m carrying around Bearers of the Black Staff, part of the Legends of Shannara by Terry Brooks. You may recall that I’m reading through the series based on the reading plan put together by Brooks.

How do I find the time to to all of this reading? I don’t. I have to make the time.

I carry a book with me for the down times. I keep a book in the family library…if you get my drift. I read at bedtime until I’m too sleepy to stay awake. And sometimes I just sit in the comfy chair and read. Admittedly, those times are rare.

But, I understand that, as a writer, I need to also read.

I need to read what others are saying.

I need to be inspired by their ideas and their imagination.

I need to watch how they create characters, how they paint a scene, how they tell a story.

Reading makes me a better writer.

It’s like Stephen King said:

“If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write. Simple as that.”

I need more time to read and write.

Simple as that.

Speaking of reading Edition Guard has a great article about The 13 Best Books for Aspiring Writers.


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