My nonresolutions

The only New Year’s resolution I think I’ve ever kept is the last one I made. Years ago, I resolved to not make New Year’s resolutions and have been very good at it since. (I don’t remember if that was before or after I decided that each Lenten season I would give up giving up things for Lent.) I do, though, have a few ideas I might pursue in the coming year.

First, I am thinking of striving more to read what I want when I feel like it. That would perhaps mean cutting down on reviews as they tend to dictate my reading schedule and habits. But it seems that with each year there are more books I read because “I have to” as opposed to because it’s the one calling to me at the time. This likewise means no reading challenges or the like. If reading is going to be true enjoyment, it requires whimsy and fortuity, not a road map.

That relates to another potential development. If I don’t do as many reviews, I may do more reading diary-type entires. These would lean toward shorter entries with my general thoughts or impressions of a book. I’m not quite sure if that will happen — what will be will be.

I’m also hoping to purge the TBR bookshelves. Seeing many of the same books on those shelves for months now, I figure it’s time to decide if I’m going to commit to a relationship with those books. If not, off they go to the used book store, the library or elsewhere. Any such commitments, though, will also likely stem from fortuity, not premeditation but or not.

As you can see, these are nonresolutions in more ways than one. No commitments or obligations. What could be better?

A man ought to read just as inclination leads him; for what he reads as a task will do him little good.

Samuel Johnson, quoted in Boswell’s Life of Johnson

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