Writing it down
December 2, 2013 § Leave a comment
For a while now, I’ve been keeping record of words I come across in my reading and don’t know the meanings of — everything from peregrination to gallimaufry — and making notes about the books I read so that I can later review them, but I so often don’t. So often my scribblings just sit there, little more than wasted ink. Enter Junot Diaz:
For the last three or four years or so, I was trying to read a book every other day and I would write the book down and what I as a reader took away from it — I still have the notebook.
While finishing a book every other day is a little beyond me, keeping a record of what I’ve taken from it isn’t and if I never do write that review, at least I can refer back and remind myself why. My capacity to retain information, store lessons and glean meaning is comparable to that of a goldfish (I was a sponge as a child — a sponge — where did that go?).
When reading, I am so in it, so involved and then, when the last page has been turned, I forget everything. I stop reflecting. It’s like a switch has been flicked and nobody’s home. What’s the point if I don’t absorb anything, turn it this way and that — am I just filling the hours?
So much of what I do seems to be passive: I read something, I watch something, I see something and then I leave it. Even my journal is a mess. By no means is it as reflective and revelatory as this guy’s, which I totally want to read by the way. Usually, I just use the space to whinge and then upon reading it back with a clearer head feel compelled to kick my past self in the shins.
At least this is a way of me doing something with the stuff. Yeah, that’s as articulate as it’s going to get, folks.