Not a new complaint…

Well…just as a preface, totally first world problem.

I want to read more. And yes, it’s a problem to find the time…or rather, more accurately, it’s a problem for me to make the time. I have the time. I just allocate it in a way that doesn’t allow me to read as much as I want to. But aside from that, I find it really hard to just stop and concentrate on reading…and not even just reading an actual book. Almost anything that’s not a quick skim or a tweet…makes me feel like a cliche for the times, you know? I am someone who read “War and Peace” when I was ten, okay? Did it make sense to me? Not really. I missed tons of serious stuff in that novel and for the next couple of years, I thought it was mostly a tragic love story between Natasha and Boris…all of the atmosphere, politics, and environment of the story, totally over my ten-year-old head. But the point is, I was interested and actually focused and read a lot of books when I was younger. Moby Dick was really awesome. I feel like a freaking idiot now.

Basically, I just tried to read a long article on design that seemed really interesting and my eyes literally wandered after about three paragraphs…and it’s not the writer’s fault! And it’s not like it was a boring read or I wasn’t interested in the topic and was being forced to read it or anything. Ugh.

In general, there just seems to be too much I want to consume…? Things to read, things to listen to, things to watch (ugh, things to watch…part of the problem with having all these lists of things to watch is that it’s actually all so accessible and organized for the viewer so there’s literally no barrier except my own damn time management…).

So yeah, I feel idiotic…and then stupid for feeling idiotic because honestly, these are not bad problems to have and I’m grateful that I can complain about it. I just want to fix it somehow…

resolution

Ok, it’s probably weird to make a resolution in the middle of October but I just wanted to start reading books again. I feel like all I read are articles, whether they’re topical or news, and that is just really starting to frustrate me. It’s not that I’m too busy or anything. It’s just easier to read these bites of material or watch a TV show or even just an online video than to actual read…

So…hmm, at this point, is a book a month too ambitious?…Hmm…going to try it. Need to pick something for November…

Ready Player One

I didn’t play, read, watch or listen to a lot of the games, books, shows and music referenced in Ready Player One but I still quite loved this book.

I liked the main character and…I liked that he was well-drawn but not too well-drawn, if that makes sense. I liked that the book as a whole allowed me to fill in the blanks about some of the characterization…it allowed the book to run at a pretty good pace without a lot of over-explanation. It allowed the reader to read into how the character reacts to things instead of having the character think “this is exactly what I feel at this moment” every single moment…I mean, there are moments where he’s thinking things through but I felt these scenes were at understandable moments. I think it’s a difficult balance because personally, I don’t like too much detail because, especially for books, it feels controlling and I loved imagining stuff as a kid…but under-characterization makes events and actions important to the story confusing and brings me out of the story.

Anyways, I liked Wade’s/Parzival’s reaction to the (first) attempt on his life and its aftermath. It said a lot about him but more than that, it said a lot about the world they live in, that he grew up in. I liked his interactions with his friends. I loved Aech. I liked Art3mis too. I loved Daito and Shoto. Again, the secondary characters were uniquely personable but not too well-drawn…I did think that some of the backstories were kind of wedged in there but I bought into the framing device the author used (i.e. by this point, the characters just wanted to talk, to spew…I know people like that…I’m a bit like that. It’s not even that in person, us nerds can be ramble-y…after various events in the books, wanting someone to understand is almost a compulsion).

I thought this book was really easy to read, well-paced, and I really liked that it was optimistic, overall, in tone. Not necessarily in the kid “love conquers all” sense, but in a “the choice is yours” way that contributed to the message of the book, if Ready Player One had a message. To me, it’s to enjoy life, don’t get cynical, and real people make each other better. Be a gunter, fight against the pursue of money and power, but also let your friends, your family, be your motivation. The quest isn’t the important part. It’s your crew, your shipmates, your party members. See? In that way, it’s “childish” but honestly, it really isn’t. People nowadays seem to think that growing up must equal becoming cynical…I feel like it shouldn’t. It relates to my mess of thoughts on being kind. It may be naive or whatever, but I think it’s all in how you view life…

Whatever. I enjoyed this book. I’m really glad I read it. I will probably try and look up the games, shows, books and music he wrote about in the book because I want to re-read the book 🙂 . I might re-read the book in the meantime anyway because…honestly, Ready Player One is the first book in a while that I got immersed in and I love that feeling.

Feeling threatened

“‘Why do men feel threatened by women?’ I asked a male friend of mine. … ‘They’re afraid women will laugh at them,’ he said. ‘Undercut their world view.’ … Then I asked some women students in a poetry seminar I was giving, ‘Why do women feel threatened by men?’ ‘They’re afraid of being killed,’ they said.” — Margaret Atwood, Atwood’s Second Words: Selected Critical Prose, 1960-1982