Ditch Netflix for a novel. And not just because a novelist is telling you to.
This is a New York Times opinion piece. It has that slow, overly-literary start, like so much of journalism and commentary. I’ve grown weary of this convention, and do not know how or why it persists.
I have to fight my way though so many of these openers to get to news and opinion I want to read. I did here too.
The premise of the writer is sound. He suggests that we read less, because reading books in short little snippets deprives us of the pleasure of reading, and our following decline in reading books follows. This is a good insight, and the writer offers what I feel is good advice (Frank Kaufmann – Editor, NWE)
What struck me more than the night’s general delightfulness, was how much my experience of reading the book was influenced by the speed with which I was suddenly moving through it. To that point, I’d been reading the book the way I usually read books, which is to say in five- or 10-minute snatches before bed. And I’d been more or less enjoying it — watching Rendell’s criminal protagonist get out of prison, following along as he searched for his victim — but I’d been enjoying it the way a person enjoys hors d’oeuvres at a cocktail party. Those cheese puffs are delicious; I just wish I could sit down with a plate of them. Now, by reading for an hour or two straight, I’d found my way into the caterer’s tent. I could savor the particular tart flavor of the author’s voice. I could admire the elegance of the trap she was setting for her doomed criminal.
Before my storm-induced Rendell marathon, I’d been reading the wrong way. John Gardner, the literary critic, wrote that the job of the novelist is to create a “vivid and continuous dream” for the reader, but I’d somehow developed a case of readerly sleep apnea. I’d gotten into the habit of consuming novels so fitfully that I was all but sealed off from their pleasures.
Read about Literacy in New World Encyclopedia here