How do you read? Let me explain. I read authors like I eat beets.
We were practicing seasonal food this summer, so every Friday we trekked out to our local farm market and purchased what was in season. This began in April and ended on Halloween, as the market-we-know-and-love officially closes at the end of October for the winter. On the last day, all you can see are staff running around with silly grins and vacation stars in their eyes.
Early in the summer, I spied this slightly rounded, purple-red root vegetable widely known as the beet or beetroot and gathered about six of them into our shopping sack.
I admit. It had been awhile since I had eaten the beet. FYI — this little beauty, whose season runs from June – October, is packed with a bunch of nutritious goodies. Don’t take my word for it. Google away.
They’re ugly and not all that popular in my neck of the land, but that is part of their charm for me. I’m a sucker for the underdog.
I boiled, peeled and chopped that first batch of beets, and that was it. I couldn’t get enough beets. I cooked them every week, and we ate them cold in salads, hot as side dishes. I started buying them pickled in jars. We ate those, too. I was forever eating beets. Forget chips, nuts, pretzels — I was eating root vegetable junk food.
I have to tell you that Mr. G, honey was getting a little freaked about my beet obsession. With good reason. He caught me on more than one occasion, late at night, standing barefooted in the kitchen in my nightie eating cold beets. He freaks when I put cold, crisp bread and butter pickles on my peanut butter sandwich, too. In a word. Tasty.
My beet feeding frenzy is beginning to wane now, much to his relief.
By now, you’re probably wondering if this is going anywhere. I’m beginning to wonder that, too.
But I began thinking that I read fiction like I eat beets. I discover an author I’ve never read before — doesn’t have to be a new author, just a new-to-me author — and, if I fall in love with their voice, I read them like I eat beets. I read everything they’ve ever written that I can get my hands on. I read their list forwards and backwards from wherever I started. I’ve been known to buy used editions of books that are no longer in print.
I started doing this as a kid with Dr. Seuss and moved on up the line with Louisa May Alcott and Lucy Maud Montgomery and Beverly Cleary, and then Tolkien and Piers Anthony and…
Oh, I can happily move from author to author in between these reading frenzies and I do, but I can also be pretty single-minded about an engaging new author — just like beets.
So, I’m wondering, how do you read?
Heads up from your desks — it’s Friday!