Thursday, March 13, 2014

Book Buffet

I am happy to say that I'm having a lovely "breather" from work this week, as we are on Spring Break! Because I have different things going on during my break, I didn't want to get caught up in a long novel that would make me want to stay curled up under a blanket all week to read it. Yes, yes, I know that "normally" it's exactly like what I'd want to do - IS spring here in Texas, and we've had a few lovely days and more on the way. As much as I love to read, I also love being outdoors. Rarely do these two conflict but, when they do, I try to be outside as much as possible when the weather permits. (I mean, this IS Texas - which means spring doesn't last long, and we can go from a mild winter to 102 degrees in the blink of an eye.)

All that being said, I decided to stay away from long and in-depth books and do a little 'buffet' reading. You know, pick a few small, unimportant novels - a little fluff, so to speak. Now, I'm not a book snob, so I'm pretty much game for anything within reason. I skimmed my book shelves and my Kindle, but...I don't buy 'fluff,' so I shopped for some inexpensive ($1.99) reads on Kindle. After I thought I'd found a few, my book buffet began.

I enjoyed the first book. It was cute, simple. I had the plot pretty much figured out (including the ending) by the time I was done reading a fourth of it. Of course, I didn't want something too involved - I mean, wasn't that the point? On to the next book, the plot...pretty much played out like the first one. Don't get me wrong, I can find redeeming qualities about each, just...not very many. Quick, easy reads - isn't that what I wanted?

Here's the thing about a buffet, though. If you're not real picky with what you read, it seems to satisfy the need for reading, doesn't stick with you. I mean, it's fun in the moment (which is fine)...buuuuut, after the third one...I realized my brain wasn't really being fed. Is that so bad? Well, I guess it all depends. I thought what I wanted was to read but try to give my brain a bit of a vacation, too. What I realized is my brain appreciates a vacation where it can build its own world inside my head. That IS my brain's version of "fun" - which really means, it's also my version of fun.

What did I do about it?

Well, I got up this morning and looked at the calendar. I still have four days left of my break. I do have plans that don't involve reading, of course, but I've decided it's time to give my brain what it wants. It's suffered from malnutrition long enough. And if you're wondering if I'm aware that there are strong, powerful, well-written books that aren't the size of doorstoppers, I should acknowledge that I am very aware. I am including those when I say "in-depth" books. I do not mean size. When a book is good, no matter the size, it pulls me in and makes me a part of it. It engages my brain, my heart, and my soul. It takes energy and thought and, because of the way I am, usually involves additional research of some kind. I do not read just to follow words across a page and to mark it off my reading list. I read to add something to my life.

I guess...that's what was missing from my fluff reads. They didn't add anything to my life. It's like watching a sitcom just to have something blaring on the television. There's nothing wrong with that, of course, it...just...doesn't happen to be my thing.

I do have two other books I read before the break that I want to tell you about, but I'm not in the mood to write about them today. I guess I'm a bit anxious to have some reading time before I start my day's adventures. I promise to write about them in the next few days before I go back to work. Hopefully, I'll also have something interesting to tell you about the book I am about to start today.

Happy Reading! :)

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