With so many books and stories out there to choose from, have you ever found yourself wondering:
‘What should I be reading?’ or ‘Which books merit a place on my bookshelf?’
I love reading interviews with writers and my favourite response to that question has to be Kafka’s:
I think we ought to read only the kind of books that wound and stab us. If the book we are reading doesn’t wake us up with a blow on the head, what are we reading it for? …we need the books that affect us like a disaster, that grieve us deeply, like the death of someone we loved more than ourselves, like being banished into forests far from everyone, like a suicide. A book must be the axe for the frozen sea inside us. – Franz Kafka
I can think of many books that ‘woke’ me up. Books that affected me. Almost all of Alice Munro’s short stories for example move me deeply and Virginia Woolf’s way with words let’s the light in through the cracks in my head. Can you think of a book or a writer whose work has made you a better writer; a better reader; a better person?
I hoped to include a ‘bookish’ pic with this post but here’s what one of my favourite trails looked like yesterday.