Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Stolen reading time

Profacero and some other bloggers keep up the practice of "reading for pleasure Wednesdays" posts. Although I'm not organized enough to do that, it made me think about stolen reading time.

Stolen reading time is the time you get to read when you're doing something else, although I guess it's technically multitasking reading time. Examples:
  • Reading a book while you're stirring risotto = stolen reading time.
  • Reading a book while waiting for the computer to boot up = stolen reading time.
  • Reading while you're waiting in a long, slow-moving checkout line = stolen reading time.
  • Reading while eating breakfast or lunch = not exactly stolen reading time, but one of life's great pleasures nonetheless.
The other day I felt as if I'd stolen some reading time. In the piece I was writing, I wanted to allude to a novel that I'd read years before but didn't remember very clearly. Ten seconds later, Google books had it ready for me. (For some reason, I'm getting fond of reading on the screen, sometimes even when I have a paper copy.) I got to the part I'd wanted to talk about but then just kept reading right past dinner, too absorbed in what was happening to stop; it was that good.

A few days later, still working, I pulled a book off the shelf that I'd always intended to read. It, too, was related to the project, and it was amazing. Are the books really that good, or are they just enhanced by the glow that stolen reading provides? And is it procrastination if the project is going to be much better for my having read those books?

4 comments:

Ink said...

I think the guilty pleasure factor of stolen reading time definitely enhances the reading experience...good call!

And yeah, I love the Google Book thingie, too. Especially for checking quotes after I (oops!) returned the book to the library...

tenthmedieval said...

Say not procrastination, but diversion merely. I now have to set up almost all my reading in this fashion, there being so much other non-reading crap I arguably ought to be doing at any given time.

Word verification is `adverbo'; how philological!

undine said...

Ink, guilty pleasure factor is key. Reading while stealing the time is like eating food without calories.

tenthmedieval, from now on "diversion" and not "procrastination" is how I'll think of this. Setting up reading in this way sounds like the way to go.

Motorcycle Clothing said...

sing with me...
stolen.. just like the moment...
stolen.. just like the moment..