Actually, I read a book a day and have for years — but it's an audiobook, and most of this reading is done while asleep.
Do you have an reading-related New Year's resolutions? Let's think up some reading projects for the new year. We don't necessarily have to do them. Let's just contemplate them. I've already thought of 2, one of which I plan to do. First:
Maybe a good project would be those "History of..." pages, not just for their most common words — WAR! — but to have had it run through your head, at least once, what happened in all of those places. Do you know how many pages we are talking about? The number of members in the United Nations is not the right answer, but do you know that number? It's 193. Wikipedia lists 206 sovereign states (including those with disputed sovereignty).That will start on New Year's day. Don't worry, I'll make it amusing. Second:
Let's make a New Year's resolution: Each day, read one Wikipedia "History of..." page. Will you join me? We'll go in alphabetical order, and I'll prompt you with blog posts.
What I like [about "The Great Gatsby"] is that each sentence is good, on its own. Seriously. Test it out. "As my train emerged from the tunnel into sunlight, only the hot whistles of the National Biscuit Company broke the simmering hush at noon." Every sentence is a writer's inspiration....With commentary, of course. For example, here's my commentary on the hot-whistle-simmering-hush sentence (responding to a commenter who complained that "trains do not 'emerge' from tunnels. They blast, speed, rip, explode, hurtle. E.B. White and Orwell would have hated the verb 'emerge'):
I feel like starting a blog devoted to individual sentences in "The Great Gatsby," chosen randomly, and continuing until all the sentences have been used up.
Now, one reason the train can't "blast" or "explode" from the tunnel — and by the way, oh, you men, with your cocks — is that the "only" sound was the "hot whistle." Otherwise, there was a "hush." That's all very surreal, no? Why didn't the train make any noise? It emerged, because it wasn't a screaming cock blasting through a vagina tunnel, as happens in your (presumably) E.B. White-approved works of fiction. Why was the train silent, why were the whistles hot, why was the hush simmering, why was it noon, why were the whistles biscuit whistles, and why wasn't it the biscuit, rather than the whistle, that was hot?