Molly Templeton wrote a post on Tor.com, "Every Book in Its Right Time," which resonated so strongly with me. It's about how books find us, or we find books, or sometimes books pass us by, only to catch up later.
"How does this happen? How is it that sometimes, a book that’s clearly meant for a reader takes so long to find them?
There is no answer to this question, of course. Books come to us when they come, and it’s either their time or it’s not. It’s very hard to manifest the precisely perfect moment in which to read a given book, though every so often, it can be done. You can pick just the right book for a trip, for a vacation, for a long weekend of doing little else..."
It is such a wonderful feeling, when I open the a book and it's the right book at the right time. There's a feeling of satisfaction, of something clicking into place, of recognition: this is the story that I need right now.
I have been thinking about this quite a bit lately, because I keep picking up the wrong books. I don't know quite what I want to read, though I have a better idea of what I don't want to read. It's the same feeling I get driving home after work, trying to decide what to cook for dinner. I am spoiled for choice, but I can't decide. Unlike cooking, I don't have to commit to a recipe and ingredients. And I've learned it's better to stay out of bookstores in this mood, because it leads to impulse buying (and not necessarily to reading). I did stop at the library one evening this week and browsed the science fiction/fantasy section, bringing home five books that I've been meaning to read (and may even have checked out before).
"I know that not everyone thinks constantly about what they’re reading when, and how it fits into the grand scheme of their reading life, or into the lineup of everything else they’ve ever read. But those patterns are there, all the same; those books we skip or linger over, the ones that come back, years later, looking shiny in a whole new way."
One of the joys of blogging was finding other readers who do think about what they're reading, and talk about their own books and other people's books, who notice patterns and make reading plans around them. I've missed that.