That’s a Wrap: Q1 Recap, Q2 Ramp-up

Broken record time: Where does the time go? April already. Gee-whiz.
A quick recap of March and the first quarter of the year, Q1.

First, March. 
At Emily Dickinson’s House

I’ve done some cool literary stuff this month–visited Emily Dickinson’s house in Amherst, Massachusetts and made the pilgrimage to Willa Cather’s grave in Jaffrey, New Hampshire. I can’t believe I haven’t blogged about these two adventures yet, but I will for sure in April. I’m also behind on book reviews. However, to make excuses, we did have out-of-town guests one week and then spent a week in Chicago. Adventures AND family & friends . . . can’t live without ’em!

And then there was Bloggiesta 

March 27-30 was to be spent doing some focused work on my blog for Bloggiesta. A bit of spring cleaning, a bit of catching up, a bit of connecting with other bloggers.

The first day I revised my “Book Index” page, which I had taken down last year. The link is back up there on the navigation bar it you’d like to check it out. What do you think?

On the second day I started several drafts of posts.

But then we went out and bought a new canoe and all of my blogging plans were sunk. Ah, life! To be honest, I’ll take a canoe over a blog any day.

I did manage to participate in two Twitter chats and that was pretty groovy. I am in awe of my fellow bloggers–their talent, their commitment, their willingness to share. What a big-hearted group. Thank you all for making this such a fun hobby!

From January 1st to April 1st, I was dared to read only books I already owned.
I have survived the dare! Thank you, James, for putting it out there.

So far this year I’ve read nine ten books and I’m happy to say only two three weren’t in my possession on Dec 31st of last year (two were review copies):

  1. The Count of Monte Cristo, Dumas
  2. Goodbye to Berlin, Isherwood
  3. Orange is the New Black, Kerman
  4. The Woman in White, Collins
  5. Hope Street, Jerusalem, Makler (review copy)
  6. Let’s Take the Long Way Home, Caldwell
  7. Taking My Life, Rule
  8. Louisa May Alcott, Cheever
  9. The Collector of Dying Breaths, Rose (review copy)
  10. Birds of Connecticut, Tekiela

Make no mistake, I have been buying books throughout Q1–in fact, I went on two book buying binges, mainly at used stores. As for the library, it was hard not to leave the place with my usual stack of impulse books (I did check out a few reference books). I must confess that I bought a copy of MFA vs. NYC in Chicago and started reading it, but when I realized what I was doing I stopped.

Oh, hell. I just realized I read a bird book that I bought in March. Oh well. It was small. Make that 10, not 9 books read.

For the rest of 2014 I plan on continuing to read books I already own. I will check books out of the library. And, sure, I’ll buy a book here and there. For example, Nevada Barr’s new release, which is out today! More likely, I’ll trade-in books at the Book Barn in Niantic, but my priority will to read books I own. What a concept.

Currently I’m reading Suite Francaise by Irene Nemirovsky, which was one of the last books I purchased at Borders, so that means I’ve owned it since September 2011. It’s also my Classics Club Spin book, which I probably will not finish by April 2nd, tomorrow, but I’m loving it so far.

And Ready When You Are, C.B. has a new blog, check it out:

What is it? From the website: “It’s sort of a reading challenge, only everyone participates at the same time. For 24 hours, we read books, post in our blogs about our reading, and visit other readers’ blogs. We also participate in mini-challenges throughout the day and win prizes.

This will be my first time doing Dewey. I’m knocking around ideas about what books I’ll read, if I’ll focus on a theme or genre, etc. I’ve never read for 24 hours, not even when I was in grad school. This should be interesting! Any advice?

April is National Poetry Month!

I don’t have any special plans for National Poetry Month, other than reading more poetry than I usually do, which won’t be hard as I hardly read poetry, which is a shame. Perhaps I’ll try to read a poem a day. I have some books of poetry on my shelves, Oh, I know, I could read Willa Cather’s poems. There are 37 of her poems in the Library of America volume that contains her poetry. I can handle that. Will let you know how it goes.

What’s going on in your reading life? Any big wins in March? Exciting things coming in April?

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