Goldilocks (BTT)

Here’s today’s Booking Through Thursday:

Okay, so the other day, a friend was commenting on my monthly reading list and asked when I found the time to read. In the ensuing discussion, she described herself as a “goldilocks” when it comes to reading–she needs to have everything juuuuuust right to be able to focus. This caught my attention because, first, I thought that was a charming way of describing the condition, but, two, while we’ve talked about our reading habits, this is an interesting wrinkle. I’d never really thought about it that way.

So, this is my question to you–are you a Goldilocks kind of reader?

Do you need the light just right, the background noise just so loud but not too loud, the chair just right, the distractions at a minimum?

Or can you open a book at any time and dip right in, whether it’s for twenty seconds, while waiting for the kettle to boil, or indefinitely, like while waiting interminably at the hospital–as long as the book is open in front of your nose, you’re happy to read?

I am absolutely NOT a Goldilocks kind of reader. I can read virtually anytime, anywhere. I can read for five minutes or five hours in an uncomfortable waiting room. I can read while I mine ore in Eve online. I can read while I wait for water to boil or my coffee to finish brewing. I can read in the two minutes while the microwave heats something. I can read in front of the active TV, while listening to music, or in silence. I can read at night or in bright sunlight, indoors or out. I can even read with a squidgy cat on my lap trying to get in the way. The only problem is that sometimes I get so caught up in what I’m reading that I lose track of what I’m waiting for or supposed to be paying attention to…


Speaking of books, today’s review is of Samantha David’s I Married a Pirate, while yesterday’s review is of Peter Reinhart’s Whole Grain Breads.

Posted in Writing
12 comments on “Goldilocks (BTT)
  1. Definitely the opposite of a “goldilocks” reader here.

  2. Mo says:

    That’s my problem too…I loose track of time, and don’t look up until I smell something burning. LoL

  3. ScottM says:

    I’m also not goldilocks; like you, I can dip in instantly for any length of time. Talking to me while reading is futile. I used to put the radio or a CD on while reading, but realized that after an hour I never could name more than one or two songs that had been on. I get lost way too easily…

  4. Stephanie says:

    And I’m absolutely like you!! Especially now that I have kids, if I had to wait around for the perfect time, I’d never get any reading done!! Great answer!!

  5. Daphne says:

    There definately seems to be a pattern here! That must be what makes us all such avid readers.

  6. heather says:

    robustyoungsoul & Daphne: Heh, this is the fun part of memes—finding out you aren’t so weird after all. 😉

    Mo: *grin* I’ve definitely had that problem. “Hey wait… didn’t my coffee finish brewing an hour ago?”

    ScottM: Oh goodness I do understand that problem. Mom used to have the hardest time getting through to me while I was reading when I was young.

    Stephanie: Yeah, I can imagine that kids must make that SO necessary!

  7. I generally can read anytime and anywhere, but sometimes not so much. If the volume is too loud, forget it. If it’s a book I really really need to focus on, I need time and quiet. Otherwise, I a quick peek while waiting at the drive thru or while my husband pumps the gas, is no problem.

  8. Chris says:

    Thanks for visiting my blog. Reading while walking is challenging in the new house. I need more practice.

  9. Mei says:

    Ha! I definitely have left things on the stove too long because I’m in a book!

  10. Aaron says:

    For me, it’s more about internal distractions than external. I can get wrapped up in something to the point that nothing else seems to exist. But my head usually doesn’t want to slow down enough for reading. Whether there’s noise or there’s silence, my mind’s just as likely to wander.

    So the trick is just to struggle through a chapter or two, until I finally become absorbed.

  11. Krones says:

    I’m moving away from being a Goldilocks reader, my reading habits are changing. I am dipping into numerous book all at the same time where as before I stuck with one at a time until it was finished and I had to be in the right frame of mind to even begin. My one place I can’t read is a noisy doctor’s office; with the kids crying, or locale mongrel chatter, etc. But that’s why audio books were invented! 🙂

  12. heather says:

    Literary Feline: It is harder for me to focus on non-fiction than fiction, but fiction… heh… doesn’t matter where!

    Chris: lol, I can see how an unfamiliar layout would confuse the issue. don’t fall down the stairs!

    Mei: Why am I thinking of the time a housemate’s mother stayed with us and suddenly we saw her running down the hall with a smoking pan trilling “coming through, coming through!” as the smoke alarms went off? 😀

    Aaron: That makes a lot of sense. Certainly if I’m restless, I’m restless! But luckily that happens less often these days.

    Krones: Glad to hear you’re finding it easier to read everywhere! 🙂

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