The importance of books

I was listening to local radio last week.

A guest speaker boldly announced, “I’ve just finished my seventeenth book.” He paused for the oohs and ahhs and congratulations to fade away before adding: “I enjoyed the experience so much I think I read another book sometime.”

Writers write – that’s a given principle.

I would like add that writers also read – voraciously.

Last year I read very few books. In fact, it was the fewest books I have read for four decades. (Yes – it’s a problem I have – I’ve kept a list of all the books I have read for over 40 years!) I try to finish two books a week; I’ve averaged over 92 per year for those 40 years. Last year I read only 25 books. (I did do an enormous amount of reading on the internet, however.) This year I plan to correct that and I’m already off to a flying start, on target to read over 100 books this year.

From time to time I’ll write about what I am reading.

In the meantime, what are you, my readers, reading? Leave your comments and insights below.

UPDATE: For a follow up article on this topic go to this new article: The importance of books – more comments.


16 Responses to “The importance of books”

  1. Rick Cockrum says:

    Was the guest being facetious? Did he mean he read 17 books in his lifetime? If so, that’s appalling.

    I only read about 30 – 40 books a year. Most is fiction, especially science fiction and fantasy. Some is on time management, mysticism, philosophy, the occult, religion, psychology, computer programming, and running small business. Over the years more and more of my reading has come from the internet. It’s amazing how many complete books are (legally) available. Then there are all the blogs and static site.

  2. Trevor says:

    Hi there Rick.

    How well do you understand Australian humour? This speaker is also a stand up comedian which explains this statement. Sarcasm is very much a trademark of our humour.

  3. Rick Cockrum says:

    That explains that.

    I’ve not had any contact with Australian humour. The only non-American humour I’ve had any contact with is British. The sad thing is I can picture a lot of people saying something along those lines and meaning it.

  4. Trevor says:

    You are frighteningly correct Rick. We might be horrified to know the true extent of the lack of reading done by most adults. Sadly, somewhere along the line in the school life of our children the love of books and reading is extinguished for too many. As a teacher I tried my hardest to encourage reading and a love of books. I rarely let a day go by without reading for 10-20 minutes to my class.

    Fortunately, both of our children are voracious readers, possibly reading more than I do. The parental example was there from the moment they were born. I have fond memories of nursing them both as babies and reading book after book.

  5. Nick says:

    Well, I read very few unfortunately. Many books bored me to death, especially fantasy and science-fiction( not all ). I eventually found that they were excellent soporiphics, so my money wasnt wasted afterall.
    But, the thing is, when I read I want to be absorbed by the knowledge, I want to learn and think immediately. This is the reason why I tend to read essays, philosphical ones most of the time. I want to see the world with a different perspective. Ideas must pour out of the words, and amaze me. I enjoy very precise and intelligent expression, metaphores. The whole must enlighen me, and push me to learn more. Only a few books manage to keep my attention in such ways, nowadays.
    Sorry if I make mistakes, im a french student in grade 11.

  6. Trevor says:

    Hi there Nick, welcome to my blog. I think that you have tapped into the real value of reading books.

    For the vast majority of people, books in the genres of crime, fantasy and romance (just to pick three that immediately come to mind) are read purely for their entertainment value. These books also provide escapism from the real world. Using books (and movies) in this way is quite valid and can give your life a much needed balance. It is refreshing to the mind and body to “lose” oneself in a story.

    The real life changing value comes from books that challenge our thinking, books that help us to develop a better world view, books that “rattle our cages” and help us to see old familiar things in new ways.

    Thanks for your thoughtful comments.

  7. […] few months ago I wrote an article called The Importance of Books. This article has had several people commenting on what I was saying. One comment that was posted […]

  8. […] The importance of books […]

  9. needhi says:

    i just love books to read

  10. Trevor says:

    That is really great Needhi. I hope that you have access to many good books.

  11. diana says:

    read twilight or harry potter.its cool

  12. Trevor says:

    Hi there Diana,

    Thanks for your comments. I have no time to read poorly written books like you mention when there are so many far better books that I wish to read.

    You obviously enjoyed the books you mentioned and that is great – they just don’t interest me.

  13. Oby says:

    That’s great! Good books widen our horizon. God be blessed for books!

  14. rishiraj says:

    i think books are our best friends i also like to read book

  15. trisha says:

    you are book worms i love read books too

  16. priyanka says:

    Well i don’t know why i read books, all i can say is when i read them i feel as if i am a part of those scene created by author. Completing a book in a day or in a night has never been my motto but when i hold them in my hands, i don’t feel like leaving them till i have reached to an end were i know that every thing is ok with the characters in it.