Of course, this year had to turn out worse than the last in terms of pages tackled and read. I managed to cover about 3000 pages this year, and there is no word appropriate enough to describe this “achievement” (or rather the lack of). I had thought last year’s “only about 4500 pages” dismal. Calling this year’s count “abysmal” hardly even comes close.
So I am at a loss for words. Haa.
To be honest, this happened but not without reason – I attribute this to the change of environment both on the personal and professional front: it has been a very busy year at work, no thanks to a new job description and additional tasks and responsibilities; and at home, all of my books have been sealed up in boxes for the last six months, and I was simply not bothered to rip them open to choose a book to curl up in bed with.
I really should stop with the excuses.
What I did miraculously find time to do, however, was this: quickly put together a few of my previous writings, painstakingly trim them into readable (and not so vague) chunks of text that would still make sense just to a selected few, and get the final edit published in a book. The result is The National: Experience, a compilation of stories put together by The National fans for both the band and their fans from all four corners of the world.
The actual book, edited by fellow fan Jayne Yong, will only be posted to me next month, but I have already read the digital copy twice and I get goosebumps at every single page. Every one of us fans may have a different story to tell – the amount of talent and honesty poured into each and every piece is simply staggering – but ultimately, we are all united by our love for the band and their music, and that is all that matters.
Plus, having band frontman Matt Berninger publicly acknowledging our efforts at the final show to wrap up their High Violet tour last weekend was another cherry on top – granted, the book may not find a spot among the Tenneesee Williams and Joan Didions in his bookshelf, but I believe it will still be one to be cherished by the band in years to come.
You can call it self-gratification. I call this the makings of an obsession. So why, yes, thank you, The National.
The Black Magician trilogy, Trudi Canavan
The Magicians’ Guild
The High Lord
The Opal Deception, Eoin Colfer
A Game of Thrones, George RR Martin
Kraken, China Mieville
The National: Experience, Jayne Yong
Warehouse sales attended:
Big Bad Wolf, 9 October 2011
(See previous years’ list: 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010.)