And now we're in February and I've suddenly lost my reading mojo. It's not that I don't have good books to read: I've got stacks of them (literally) both in real life and downloaded to my e-reader, all of which I'm really excited about. But for some reason I don't seem able to make the commitment to any of them.
Because reading a novel is a commitment. It requires you to leave your own world behind for several hours, and give yourself over to the author and their world. And right now I just don't seem to have the energy for that commitment.
'It's not you,' I feel like saying to my tottering To Be Read pile, 'it's me.'
Part of it is because I'm coming up with a story of my own, feeling my way into it, and I'm a little bit afraid of being too influenced by other writers' work. Part of it is because some of the books I have to read are books that I do *have* to read, and while I know I will enjoy them, probably a lot, the duty aspect is making me drag my heels, because I'm contrary that way.
Plus, let's admit it: when we writers read a novel that's really really good, that we wish we'd written ourselves, we run the risk of getting jealous.
Or alternatively, when we read a novel that's so-so, but it's sold in its shedloads and is on all the bestseller lists, we run the risk of getting angry.
Reading is fraught with emotional peril. It requires bravery and trust.
I'm still reading a lot; I'm just not reading novels. Short stories are perfect for when I'm in a commitment-phobic mood, reading-wise, and I'm making my way through a brilliant and thought-provoking Phillip K Dick collection at the moment. But I hope I find my reading mojo soon, because when you find a novel that really does sweep you away...you forget about being commitment-phobic.
Do you get into reading 'moods' like this? What do you do to jolt yourself out of them?