At the end of January, I was quite surprised to realize I had already read over 1,100 pages of books during 2008. (See here.) Well, 2008 is now halfway over, and while I cannot say that I’ve maintained the reading intensity that January offered, I’m pleased to report that I’ve now read 4,801 pages. And counting.
It’s interesting to look back at my monthly statistics. After a knockout first month of the year, you can see the numbers taking a steady dive. February, the shortest month of the year, still managed to accumulate 1,070 pages, but as we hit the midterm of the semester, everything changed. March came in with 833 pages, while April, the last full calendar month of the semester, churned out no more than 449 pages. It’s obvious that as the semester progresses, the time I have available for reading quickly dissipates. Instead, I find myself writing papers for the classes I’m taking while grading papers for the classes I’m teaching. It’s time-consuming.
I managed to read 628 pages in May, a respectable amount given that I had a baby at the beginning of the month and spent three weeks of the month teaching five days a week. Teaching so frequently probably helped me, really, because it meant I was spending roughly two hours per day on public transit. I think the fact that I am now finished with teaching and am working on a thesis almost exclusively from home explains why my numbers haven’t skyrocketed back up since school let out. June brought in an additional 700 pages, but surely it would have been more had I spent a few more days on the train.
This makes me question what will happen to my reading habits when I move to Tallahassee. No matter where I live in Tallahassee, I don’t expect my commute to school to be very lengthy. It’s sure to take a toll on the amount of reading I do, and oddly enough this almost makes me wish I could have a longer commute to look forward to. Of course, I could just invest that same amount of time into reading without being in transit. But somehow that’s not ever the way it works. When you’re on a bus or a train, you can’t help but have time to read. If it’s a matter of choice, though, reading for pleasure always gets low priority. Sad, but true.