Earlier this afternoon, I picked up Message in a Bottle by Nicholas Sparks. I haven't really read any of his other books--the fuss about The Notebook frankly put me off the whole idea. And I'd read a scathing review of A Walk to Remember several months back. But, as I've mentioned, I've been tired for a long time. I've got a stack of great books waiting for me to read them, and I'm eager to get to them. A few at the top of the list include the autographed copy of Elliot Roosevelt's As He Saw It that my sister gave me for Christmas; Sam Smith's Great American Repair Manual, which a friend sent me some time ago and I've simply been too immersed in chaos to read, and the former Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger's Truth and Tolerance. But I'm not QUITE ready. This afternoon, I was looking for a bathtub book to help me fully enjoy this first weekend of my new life (without, frankly, doing any hard work), and I loved the Kevin Costner / Robin Wright-Penn movie version a decade or so ago.
I'm a writer.
And even my days off don't really allow for things like this:
Since the divorce there had been only a handful of dates. It wasn't that she was unattractive. She was, or so she was often told.
I mean, what happened there? Did someone WRITE that? Did Nicholas Sparks write that? Or did some helpful editor change "it wasn't that she wasn't attractive" to "it wasn't that she was unattractive" WITHOUT READING THE NEXT SENTENCE? And how does it feel as a writer--especially as a successful writer who knows that millions of people are reading your books--to catch something like that later? ESPECIALLY if it wasn't of your own creation. This copy of the book is almost ten years old. Have that corrected that line in later printings? Do they do that sort of thing?
As you can see, concepts like "downtime" and "not working" are still very new to me. Is it possible that one day, when I've had enough sleep and enough time to walk around my neighborhood and play with my kid and hang my photographs on my walls and talk on the phone to my friends, I'll be able to read a book and gloss right over something like that?
I'm kind of thinking not.