Thursday, February 23, 2012

200 Books or Bust

This year I'm going to read 200 books. This is my new Project. 2011's Project was to gestate, bear, and maintain in general health a baby. 2010's Project was to write a novel about dystopian, demon-invaded New England. But for 2012 I want to read 200 books. I plan to do this while also keeping my house more or less running and my one-year-old more or less tended. Luckily I have long years of book-related multi-tasking experience from which to draw.

Things I Have Done While Reading a Book
  • practiced the piano
  • shaved my legs
  • Pinterest
  • talked on the phone (but not with you, I swear)
  • folded laundry
  • cooked bolognese sauce
  • eaten bolognese sauce
  • applied mascara
  • pushed a baby-filled stroller
  • jumped on a trampoline
  • pushed a stroller on a trampoline
  • no, I made that last one up
  • scrubbed a bathtub
  • camped with Bedouin in the Syrian desert 
  • vacuumed
The Kindle makes much of my multi-tasking simpler. I pity Younger Me and her unwieldy tree-corpse books. (Pro tip: a tube of toothpaste is ideal for keeping a book open while hands are occupied. It's small enough to leave most of the page readable, and smooshy enough to allow customized weight distribution across the pages. This has helped me through many a blow-dry.) But how did so many parents survive infant-rearing before e-readers? They must've had freakishly strong one-handed grips. Or else their sleeping/breast-feeding/fussy babes would've been constantly peppered with falling paperbacks. This only happened once or twice to my startled baby, and if I hadn't been Kindling, his adorable little nose might no longer be so adorable.

But I think outfitted with both Kindle and low standards of housekeeping, I miiiight be able to make it through 200 books this year. At any event I'm going to try. I'll recap the books I read here, on my poor neglected blog. Come join the party.


  1. I bet you thought no one checked this thing anymore. also, you made me laugh repeatedly. Also, you should try reading a book in Senegal. How does April sound?

  2. Hahaha, so glad you're blogging again! This was just the laugh I needed this morning. While you shaved your legs?! While jumping on a trampoline. You are talented my friend, very talented indeed.

  3. Oh you nice people. Rebecca, Senegal sounds great. . . I've actually been looking at ticket prices. And then shuddering. I'm not sure which is more daunting - the price, or the toddler travel time.

    Emily - the real surprise of course is that I shaved my legs at all! How on earth do you juggle two kiddos? One has already pushed me into "mascara is for special occasions only" territoy.

  4. Love it Laura! And good speedy reading to you! I am a binge reader- I start a book and the world stops until the book is done. So I have to be careful what I start and when. Also, I do have a freakishly strong left hand from reading through the night when Charlotte was a baby. (I don't do that much anymore since I learned to sleep while nursing without dropping the baby.)

  5. So, Laura-on-your-birthday: do audio books count? If so, you can "read" many that way. I just read 5 PG Wodehouse books (The Return of Jeeves, Bertie Wooster Carries On, Spring Fever, and two others whose names escape me) plus a Tess Geritsen book (The Sinner) and Gary Schmidt's The Wednesday Wars. I bet you would enjoy that one. I was able to download them from the library website.

    Hope you are successful in your reading go. Have you tried publishing your novel? I knew you had written it, but...