The Pew Research Center reported last week that “nearly a quarter of American adults had not read a single book in the past year. As in, they hadn’t cracked a paperback, fired up a Kindle, or even hit play on an audiobook while in the car. The number of non-book-readers has nearly tripled since 1978.”
I can’t imagine life without books. Some of my best childhood memories involve books. The red Child Craft books full of poems and stories, Nancy Drew mysteries, the Little House series. I kept it up as an adult and now I usually read around 20 books each year, although in 2012 I burned through 41. Last year, however, I read a measly 12 books. What happened? Am I about to become a “non-book-reader” statistic? Never! I know exactly what happened.
First, our church had a “read-through-the-Bible-in-a-year” program in which I took part. (So I guess you could say I read 66 books.) Keeping up with that demanding reading plan did take a chunk of time, but it was so worth it.
Second, I bought an iPhone. I’m embarrassed to admit how much time that cool little gadget sucked up. Shudder. Facebook, Pinterest, Words with Friends. I am back in control now. Pretty sure.
Third, I subscribed to Gospel Ebooks. Every day these nice people send me a list of books that are dirt cheap or even free. Every day. FREE. Books. So my Kindle got loaded up and I’d read a few chapters out of a new book, but then would get distracted by the next day’s free offer. And so it went. I’m working on this gluttonous addiction.
I plan to pick up the pace this year. And I better. My current “Books to Read” list has 170 titles on it. Plus, there are 26 unread books on my Kindle, a pile of 8 books by my bed, and 13 must-reads on my bookshelf. At the rate of 20 books a year, I’ll be almost 65 years old by the time I finish. Then I will retire….and finally have time to do some serious reading.
“I still find each day too short for all the books I want to read….” John Burroughs