To help guide efforts to work toward New Year’s resolutions for 2023, this month the Moab Sun News is turning to local experts to give us all some advice.
This week, we talked to bibliophiles and hosts of Radio Book Club on KZMU Radio, Grand County Public Library’s Jessie Magleby and Back of Beyond Books’ Shari Zollinger.
So what’s the trick to read more books in 2023? Their answer: create a regular book-reading habit.
Zollinger said her New Year’s resolution is to reinstate her habit of reading in the evenings as “a much more civilized way to enter sleep.”
“Personally, I used to read at bedtime,” Zollinger said. “Slowly but surely that habit got eclipsed by watching films and episodic narratives on the oh so many media platforms.”
Maybe you enjoy starting the day with ten quiet minutes with a novel, or you prefer stealing a half hour at lunch to read a little history. “Most important part: make it a habit!” Zollinger said.
Magleby agreed: “Life can get so busy that sometimes one has to intentionally hold or create space for reading,” she said. “My best reading time is in the early mornings: I actually get up about an hour earlier than necessary to read before preparing for work.”
Her best advice for focusing during that time: put your phone in another room and remove yourself from distractions.
“Secondly, don’t force yourself to read or finish something that you’re not enjoying!” said Magleby. “It is so liberating to put down something that’s not working for me, and to reach instead for a book that actually gives pleasure.”
Two great places to find new books are the Indie Bestseller website (hot new titles chosen
collectively from the nation’s Independent Booksellers) at bookweb.org/indie-bestsellers or the Grand County Public Library, which highlights new acquisitions within the library and on its online catalog at catalog.moablibrary.org.
Magleby’s book recommendations
“The Art of X-Ray Reading: How the Secrets of 25 Great Works of Literature Will Improve Your Writing” by Roy Peter Clark: “This was a fun one, not too text-book-ish. Gave me fantastic insight and new appreciation for some old friends; made me go back and reread a few.”
“Tolstoy and the Purple Chair: My Year of Magical Reading” by Nina Sankovitch: “Nina Sankovitch loses her dear sister and turns to books for healing and comfort. A wonderful and inspiring literary journey, and a timely reminder to slow down and savor books.”
Books on Zollinger’s bedside
Zollinger recommends “The Handmaid’s Tale” by Margaret Atwood, “A Book of Days” by Patti Smith, and “Dreams” by C.G. Jung.
Radio Book Club is broadcast live at 5 p.m. on the first Monday of every month: listen on 90.1 or 106.7 FM or on www.kzmu.org. An archive of shows is online at www.kzmu.org/radio-book-club.