Tuesday, May 1, 2007

The Codex Infinitum. Sounds Borgesian, eh? The idea is that I am always reading and, therefore, I will always be reporting. That's the gist, the crux of the nub: for every book I read from now on, I will report back with at least a paragraph summarising the plot/themes/tropes/voice/etc. of the work in question.

You may inquire why I'd do such a thing, especially now that I'm out of school and safely with BA. There are several reasons, of which I will name two: 1) As you noted, I'm not in school anymore. I am not required to engage the text the way I was before, and so more often than not I don't. I hope to correct this and thus continue to enrich my mind so I don't end up a senile, insular old man who is deeply out of touch with his fellow man. And 2) I read an awful lot and have always wanted to keep a running tally of what I read and when I read it. I sometimes write my name and the date of completion on the inside back cover of my books, but I do it so inconsistently that it's hardly a dependable source.

I've read a few books so far this year. Here are the ones I've completed (that I can remember):
Great Pop Things by Colin B. Morton & Chuck Death
Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs by Chuck Klosterman
The Sot-Weed Factor by John Barth
The War on Cliché by Martin Amis
Kiss of the Spider Woman by Manuel Puig
Slouching Towards Bethlehem by Joan Didion
Will Eisner's New York: Life in the Big City by Will Eisner
A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again by David Foster Wallace
Six Memos for the New Millenium by Italo Calvino
Jesus' Son by Denis Johnson (finished 05/01/07)

Books you can expect to see reports on in the near future include:
Hopscotch by Julio Cortazar
The Anxiety of Influence: A Theory of Poetry by Harold Bloom
The Notebooks of Malte Laurids Brigge by Rainer Maria Rilke
The Uses of Literature by Italo Calvino
Girl With Curious Hair by David Foster Wallace

Of course, you know how it is with books. It's possible that I'm going to pick up, say, Darkness at Noon off the shelf, somehow instantly be in the mood for it, and see it through to the end in one night. In which case, expect some Gulag action.

I'll report back soon. Stay tuned.