Thursday, February 20, 2014

When you finish a novel late at night... long do you let yourself wait before you choose the next novel you're going to read?  (I'm talking here only about fiction; non-fiction is a separate reading category.) 

For me, the answer depends on two factors:

  1. How good the novel I just finished was
  2. Whether the novel on top of my mental to-read stack still feels appropriate
If the novel I just completed was marvelous, as last night's James Lee Burke (The Glass Rainbow) was, I will sometimes turn off the light and go to sleep not knowing what novel I will read next.  Should I do that, though, I will always determine my next novel the first thing in the morning.

If the novel I was planning to read still feels appropriate, I will get out of bed, take the just-finished book out of my book cover, and put in the new one.  If that novel no longer seems appropriate, then I will usually hunt for a new one right then and actually start it.

Obsessive, much?

Not I.


steveburnett said...

I also will sometimes bask in the wonder of a brilliant work before deciding which of the unread works on the shelves I will start next. Generally I have the next two to four after the current already chosen. Every time I finish one I ask if there's a reason since the last decision point to modify (recent topic of interest arisen, for example, and a loan from a friend always goes to the top of the stack so it gets back to them timely) and if I don't have a strong reason to change plan, I don't need to.

(This is the long-winded version of "I understand.")

Mark said...

Thanks, Steve, though in the spirit of friendship I must note that the fact that you share these traits with me does not make them any less weird.


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