READING IN THE AGE OF COVID-19
Like many friends, I thought a small silver lining of the COVID-19 shut-ins would be a chance to do a lot of reading. I was wrong.
I’ve been shut in for about 6 weeks now, and I’m still only on book number two. I haven’t made much progress on my backlog of magazines and journals either.
It’s Not Just Me
It turns out I’m not alone. Many friends have reported the same problem. They have plenty of time, and yet it seems to be consumed by Zoom calls and cleaning, daily walks, and the treacherous task of getting groceries.
It’s hard to keep your mind on the books when CNN keeps featuring Dr. Fauci.
Plenty of Books
Part of the excuse is that libraries are closed. If you order books online, you feel guilty for subjecting front-line workers to shipping anything other than food and medicine. Plus anything other than food and medicine is often delayed. (Yes, I know books are in many ways food and medicine, but Amazon doesn’t agree.)
That’s really no excuse though. I live in a house with plenty of books that deserve reading or re-reading. I can access books on my phone, and my computer.
My 88-year-old mother is gobbling up books on her phone.
My excuse is that I spend enough time at the screen, and the last thing I want to do is spend even more when I can turn real pages. But still. It’s just hard to concentrate on books that take me outside of the immediate concerns, as much as I’d like to be taken.
How Has COVID-19 Affected Your Reading Habits?
These musing all lead me to this month’s questions: How has the COVID-19 pandemic affected your reading habits? Are you reading more? Less? Different kinds of things?
Please let me know via the comments section below, the contact form on my website, my Twitter account (@terraziporyn), or the Late Last Night Books Facebook page. I’ll share the results in next month’s blog!
TERRA ZIPORYN is an award-winning novelist, playwright, and science writer whose numerous popular health and medical publications include The New Harvard Guide to Women’s Health, Nameless Diseases, and Alternative Medicine for Dummies. Her novels include Do Not Go Gentle, The Bliss of Solitude, and Time’s Fool, which in 2008 was awarded first prize for historical fiction by the Maryland Writers Association. Terra has participated in both the Bread Loaf Writers Conference and the Old Chatham Writers Conference and for many years was a member of Theatre Building Chicago’s Writers Workshop (New Tuners). A former associate editor of the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), she has a PhD in the history of science and medicine from the University of Chicago and a BA in both history and biology from Yale University, where she also studied playwriting with Ted Tally. Her latest novel, Permanent Makeup, is available in paperback and as a Kindle Select Book.
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