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Monday, March 03, 2008

Thoughts on Reading

My diary this year is one of those ones that includes little quotes at the bottom of the page ostensibly in an effort to give you more value (‘You see the tiny quotes, well that’s to inspire you every day and take up the little blank space, and for that little ink, we’ll charge you a whole bunch extra, oh and you don’t mind if we reuse them next year ‘cause you won’t remember them anyway’). Often I screech through the day without registering the helpful little excerpts dutifully pasted into the template, but once in a while one breaks through the mental barriers erected to block out intrusions on my time and gets noticed.

Anyway, marketing aside, the only one I paid attention to this week was ‘Reading is sometimes an ingenious device for avoiding thought.’ Well that just flipped my switch, I tell you. Television may result in hours devoid of original thought, but reading, never! Reading fiction should stimulate your imagination to fill in the blanks left by the description (a process more visual media completely obliterates). Reading non-fiction should be an active process of critique and assimilation, the ‘I see, I agree, I don’t get it yet, that’s daft, well maybe it could work,’ that gets dormant grey cells firing rapidly in an excitatatory display of neuronal frenzy. Reading stimulates thought, not causes you to avoid it. You can tell I love reading can’t you.
That’s my take on the issue, but I am interested in hearing yours, so post it here or email me. I faithfully promise not to bring the full might of my wrath upon you

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