so. Ahem. I have this sort of book blog, you know, but …er, I have finished exactly three books since January 2012. That’s three books in six months.
I have started more than 40 books. I have completed about the first 1/3 of all of these books and I fully intend to go back and finish them. I do! I will go back and finish these books because they’re well written and I like the characters and I want to know what hap…*yawn*…pens.
Is it me? Is it my concentration issues flaring up again? Is it my cynical intolerance for the same old shit over and over again that’s preventing me from completing a novel? Am I just a snotty asshole? Am I losing interest in reading altogether?
Like Sherlock, shooting holes in the wall: I’m bored.
I’ll tell you what I am reading. I am reading the short stories collected in Mike Allen’s Clockwork Phoenix anthologies. I am going out and seeking the books/stories/poems/art/podcasts/whatevers that these writers have gone on to publish since these anthologies were published. It’s tough to list these finds on my list of books that I’ve read (adding to that number “three” up there, I mean) because much of this material isn’t a book.
These are (note that I’m adding these links here with the intention that you will follow them and thus be able to help me figure out what I’ve found):
- short stories (Primo Levi),
- more short stories (Mike Allen)
- and more short stories (Shweta Narayan)
- poems (Catherynne Valente),
- umm…little single chapbooks sort of that were published in a hand-made, hand-bound book (several authors),
- collaborations between brush-and-paint artists/writers (Dragonhenge)
- (sometimes they’re the same person: Brian Selznick),
- podcasts (Tales to Terrify)
- beer labels (yeah, I said “beer labels”)
- and songs, songs, songs.
I’m working out why these stories and writers are so intriguing. I’m trying to put quantifications on how these writers are pushing boundaries. I don’t think I have the literature and vocabulary skills to be able to do that, but I do know that the beta-reading project I’m doing for Mike Allen is clogging up my brains and getting in the way of every other novel I’ve tried to read since starting that project in January.
I am devouring this new wave of story-telling-whatever-this-meta-trans-media-multi-genre-stuff. Not all of these are novels, or even written word, but they’re all new ways to tell a story. I’m excited to see how this develops as we shed the need for mass-market paperbacks. To make the food metaphor: just because it’s organic doesn’t make it appetizing.
Maybe I’m not book bored. Maybe I just have new appetites?