So, on this day in 1975 I started my reading list
. The most recent entry thereto (Thursday the 15th) was book #II.3522 -- and that doesn't include the 536 books I read between August 1975 and April 1981, whereupon my list-keeping was disrupted, causing me to start over with a new numeration that August (August 15th 1981, to be exact. It was a Saturday).
When I started my list I was just about to begin my second year of High School (eleventh grade). My motivation was that I'd read a book and then later forget the author or title. Or I might read one work of a series (say, a mystery novel) and not be sure afterwards which books in that series I had and hadn't read. By writing down the title, author, and date I read it I was much likelier to be able to find a book again shd I need to.
Not everything I read goes onto the list. Things I left out include books I don't read all the way through, which are many, and audiobooks (despite several efforts to maintain a second list for audiobooks unfortunately it's never really taken). Short pieces are taken on a case-by-case basis, sometimes linked together as a single entry. The list doesn't include rpgs or magazines or correspondence or anything posted online (except for e-books of course, which are included in the main list).
Just for fun, here's a cross-section of books I've read.
The first book, forty-four years ago this week: Nicholas Meyer's THE SEVEN PERCENT SOLUTION
, the first of what wd prove a wave of new Sherlock Holmes novels not by Conan Doyle.
The next book that followed was THE SAGA OF KING HEIDREK THE WISE, tr. Christopher Tolkien, the first saga I ever read and still my favorite.
Forty years ago this week (August 18th 1979): EARTH AND SKY
by The Writers' Guild -- the first (and only) release by a writers group I helped organize while in college, an anthology of student-written poetry and prose.
The previous book before this was G. A. L. Burgeon's THIS EVER DIVERSE PAIR (which I later got autographed by the author, both under that name and his real one, Owen Barfield).
The following book was THE TOLKIEN SCRAPBOOK, ed. Alida Becker.
#II. 1175 & 1176 .
Thirty years ago this week (Fri Aug 18th 1989):
I finished up SOURCERY by Terry Pratchett
, not one of his best) and continued on to read that same day the whole of WYRD SISTERS
, my second reading of this much better book). I spent the next few weeks and again in December slogging through David Edding's utterly generic double quintology, finally giving it up after the eighth book in the ten-book series (and I've never been able to make myself go back and force my way through the last two books).
Twenty years ago this week (Sun 8/15 - W 8/18 1999): the SORCERER'S SHIP by Hannes Bok
(awful! just goes to show not every oldie is a goodie). Far more interesting were the books before and after it: a prose translation of Chretien's PERCIVAL (with the first two Continuations) and Stephen Jay Gould's QUESTIONING THE MILLENNIUM.
Ten years ago this week (in three spurts: M 8.17 - Fr 8/21, Sun 8/23-M 8/24, & Sat Sept 6-Sun 6th 2009): THE PLEASURES OF A FUTUROSCOPE by Lord Dunsany
(A posthumous publication of his last novel some fifty years after his death. Pity it's so very bad.).
Finished up three days ago (7/10, 7/19, 7/22, Sun 8/11 thr Th 8/15-19):
Jeffro Johnson's APPENDIX N.
Between the 500+ books on the First List and the 3522 books on the Second List, that's well over four thousand books. So far.
--Current reading: starting back on the third of four books that have been left hanging with on-and-off again reading the last two months or so -- two down (#II.3521 & II.3522), two to go.