Fandango continues his Provocative Question series by noting the ways we spend our free time ~ blogging, Facebook, Twitter, TikTok, Netflix binges, etc. Some people even go to the gym! I’ve heard of folks who still go on dates, though that may be just a rumor…
With all of the distractions mentioned above, do you read books as much nowadays as you used to ten, twenty, or thirty years ago? Why or why not?
As a teen and a 20-something, I probably read around a book a week, usually a romance or mystery. Thirty years ago, I had a toddler and a baby on the way, so I barely remember anything from then. I’m sure I read a romance novel occasionally, but mostly I zoned out in front of the TV when I had a minute to spare. It’s hard for me to recall movies and shows I watched in the 1990s though, since I often dozed off after five minutes. And twenty years ago, I’d just gone back to work full time, so I don’t think I read a whole lot.
But somewhere between 20 years ago and now, I began reading more. It’s probably largely due to the convenience of having countless books available on Kindle. I’ve read a zillion new romances and mysteries, and I occasionally branch out into other genres too. Last year I read 116 books! Not all were novels ~ some were novellas and others were short poetry books. But there were a lot of full length books in the mix. This year so far I’ve read 71, with the same distribution. I’m almost done with a novel and I imagine I’ll read a few more before December 31. I’ve recently discovered the used booksellers on eBay, where you can get some great deals.
There are a lot of shows and movies that sound good to me, but the reality is quite different when I begin watching. Most bore me to bits immediately and I reach for my phone to read something instead. The last show I enjoyed was the first half of the final season of Manifest. I totally gobbled up the 10 episodes in one weekend. I don’t know why that particular show grabbed me, but it’s one of the very few that has.
I spend a lot of time in Blogland, but barely any on the (anti)social media sites. More and more they’re a huge turnoff with their nasty politics and stupid memes. In fact, I’ve dumped them all except Facebook. When I’m doing “real writing” (novels as opposed to blogging) I read much less, but I’ve been neglecting that. It’s simply too unrewarding.
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