So I have realised something important. I always thought I loved rules. But I don’t really. I like understanding what is happening, which is slightly different, I think. I am not bothered by a rule being broken as long as I understand.
And I hope you feel the same, because, as you can tell, I have pretty much sucked at following my 2013 rule. Now I can give three perfectly understandable reasons for this:
1) Sometimes people suggest really hard, challenging books. And I get bogged down. One of these is fine and kind of interesting, but a few in a row is pretty off-putting (what I call the quality issue)
2) Reading for me is such a whim-based activity. Sometimes I just need to read a certain type of book, and if none of that type is on my list, well, that’s a bit rough (what I call the range issue)
3) When both the above happen, I just kind of stop reading full stop, which for me is pretty depressing (hmm, no name for this one)
And when I fail I know two things… Firstly, I have a tendency to stop trying. But secondly, I am very good at apologising. So…. sorry.
But, what I do thoroughly enjoy is fixing problems. So, I have done a rethink and gone back to my Blogging the Long List roots. The whole premise of the blog is that those who select for book award lists are experts and seek to address issues of quality and range. They should be better at this than me, or anyone else I know. Now, although at times the Booker Long List challenged this assumption, I remain something of a believer.
Helpfully, the Women’s Prize for Fiction (formerly Orange) longlist has been announced in a timely fashion – just as I was wondering what to do next – so I shall be blogging that instead.
Now, historically I have really enjoyed most of the books on this list, so hopefully this should be a fun one. Despite, in general, avoiding “women’s” things I am pretty female in my taste in authors and topics and the books on this list tend to be at an easy, accessible, reader-friendly (though somewhat un-challenging) level.
My thoughts on the selection to follow shortly….