Padding my Holiday Diet with Fiction

It used to make me terribly sad when I’d read an interview with an author and she made a statement along the lines of: “I just don’t have time to read anymore.” As a voracious reader, that seemed like a sort of death to me.

Yet, I became a writer anyway.

No one’s ever accused me of being completely rational.

Even now, I consider setting the writing aside (for all of 53 seconds) so I can become a pure reader again. Because I never have enough time to read all the amazing books being written. And when I have time, I struggle, eeny-meeny-miney-moeing through what I have stored up on my iPad.

But over the long Thanksgiving weekend, I’m hoping to gorge on a few fiction books while also working my way through several nonfiction.

On the nonfiction front, I’m currently in the middle of three:

Talk Like TED: The 9 Public-Speaking Secrets of the World’s Top Minds by Carmine Gallo. I’m addicted to the 18-minute TED talks as a source of inspiration and sometimes a swift kick in the posterior. This book happened to jump off the library shelf at me while I was there picking up another book, a book I probably won’t read now. That happens to me quite often. I go to the library to pick up the book I thought I wanted to read only to find the book I need to read. (Another time this happened is when I found The Luck Factorsuch a great book!)

The Lean Startup by Eric Ries. This book on entrepreneurship is slightly tougher reading, but it came recommended during a class I’m taking with Dan Blank of We Grow Media. I think a great deal of Dan so I’m tiptoeing my way through TLS, hoping to find wisdom I can apply to my business as an author.

Photo from:

Photo from:

The Prosperous Heart by Julia Cameron with Emma Lively. First, if you’re a writer, a creative, or a frustrated creative and haven’t read a book by Julia Cameron, get one. Now. The Artist’s Way was critical to rebuilding my confidence as a writer a few years back. The Prosperous Heart is a bit of a treaty on money management, but it’s more about learning what real prosperity is to me and how to foster the feeling of having “enough.” As an author struggling to build my business (thus The Lean Startup above), it’s critical that I figure out how to feel both hungry and satisfied at the same time.

On the fiction front, I’ve just started Caro Carson’s A Texas Rescue Christmas. I’m only three chapters in and had to take a break to finish making a Thanksgiving dessert with my son. But even now, the story is calling me from upstairs.

One thing has become clear to me over the past few weeks when I’ve been lamenting (if only silently) that I’m not reading enough: the only person who can change that is me. So in addition to my regular nonfiction reading, I’ll be adding in a generous diet of fiction over the next couple of months.

And something tells me I’ll be so much happier after treating myself to some fabulous stories.

Do you read both fiction and nonfiction at the same time or do you read in genre “waves?”


Padding my Holiday Diet with Fiction — 6 Comments

  1. I normally have 1 (maybe 2) non-fictions going at once – right now, getting ready to start Liar, Temptress, Soldier, Spy about women during the civil war; and then a few fiction – normally a romance (or 2), a mystery – something in print, as well as on my kindle (I can’t have kindle at work, so normally carry my print with me); and then an audiobook – I’m very well diversified

    • Oh, Dee – the civil war book sounds fascinating! And I love hearing that you read in so many formats. I want to listen to audio, but for the most part it makes me sleepy where as reading keeps me awake. Weird.

      Now I’m curious why you can’t have a Kindle at work!

  2. I enjoy non-fiction,too. While some books may be writing-business related, I read other non-fiction books strictly because I find them fascinating. The trick is to find non-fiction books that are both useful and interesting. It sounds like “The Prosperous Heart” may be one of those. Happy reading, Kelsey!

    • Jana – I definitely recommend anything by Julia Cameron. TAW is my favorite, but as I said, it helped pull me out of a dark place a few years back. I agree on the interesting and helpful – that’s why I love those books that jump off the library shelf at me! :-)


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