I read even fewer books in 2019 than the year before, but upon reviewing my Books Read in 2019 list, I realized that for the first time–ever?–a full third of the books I read this year were non-fiction. Even more to my surprise was that only one book was remotely science-fiction, a light-steampunky book I read only because the title was The Clockwork Scarab, and it was, unfortunately, not worth reading the sequel. It was going fairly well until the time traveler from the alternate future showed up. *facepalm* But I digress.
Regaining my appetite for reading has been a long-term goal and something I’m still working on. There are books by new authors I really enjoyed this year, such as A Trail of Lightning by Rebecca Roanhorse, and old favorites that soothe the soul, like The Tombs of Atuan by Ursula K. Le Guin. Despite myself, I have enjoyed getting to know Jane Austen through an audiobook biography I listened to when I had difficulty sleeping (I have had a long misunderstanding of Miss Austen, largely due to how she was presented to me when I was in high school and undergraduate; if my peers hadn’t gushed over her characters as if she wrote chick lit, then she and I might have been acquainted much earlier). One of the last things I learned this year was that Austen also had a chronic illness, probably an autoimmune disease, and died from it. This makes my heart break.
Another reason I have read more non-fiction this year is because I have been researching the eighteenth-century, and yet another reason I have not been reading is because I have been writing. Slowly, bit by bit, building my little mountain range–I do not know what to call it yet: more than a novel? But I do not want to call it a series. I do not know what it is. The project over all is being called WINTERS for now for the character who ties it all together is Tess Winters (yes, that’s her, but events have changed her since that post).
So I’m in the process of turning myself into an amateur generalist eighteenth-centuryist in order to write a eighteenth-century arcane-steampunk fantasy.
Here’s to a narrative-filled 2020: from books in print, on audio, from my own mind, at the rpg table, or elsewhere.