I’ve just discovered a site called DailyLit, which will send you books in daily installments so you can read them over time through email or an RSS feed. From their FAQ:
Why read books by email?
Because if you are like us, you spend hours each day reading email but don’t find the time to read books. DailyLit brings books right into your inbox in convenient small messages that take less than 5 minutes to read. This works incredibly well not just on your computer but also on a Treo, Blackberry, Sidekick or whatever the PDA of your choice. In the words of Dr. Seuss: Try it, you might like it!
I tend to do a pretty good job of finding the time to read, but there’s something about this that appeals to me. I like to read serial webnovels because the anticipation of the next chapter really heightens the experience, and this will add some of that feeling. I also find that I read in big spurts, where I’ll read a book (or more!) every day, and then go months without reading at all. This could keep me from becoming totally illiterate during those dry months.
It’ll make it easier for me to blog the books as well, I expect. I tend to have trouble with books, since I devour them all in one go– I can’t figure out how to write about them, except by trying to tackle the whole book at once, and that’s not a good strategy. Blogging a book as I read it will slow me down enough to look at individuals characters, quotes, or storylines, and make the whole things easier to digest.
I’m also really intrigued by the book club possibility. If two (or more!) people arranged to have the same book arriving in the same-sized chunks at the same time every day, and then there was a chat room or something to talk about it together, it could be a really fun shared experience. I’ve never had much success with communal reading experiences in the past since I tend to be an extremely fast reader, but this would ensure that everyone read at the same pace. It also makes it possible to have in-progress conversations without having to worry about spoilers; I find those are a lot more fun to have than after-the-fact conversations, just because of all the wild speculation you can do, but it’s hard to time it…UNTIL NOW!
Does anybody have any interest in a sort of Gender Goggles book club? They have a pretty wide selection, and all the public domain books are free. I’ve signed up for The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes and I’m eyeing The Count of Monte Cristo, but I’m very open to suggestion. It looks like the individual installments aren’t too long, so we probably won’t want a daily post, but what about a weekly open thread, to discuss everything that happens until the next week’s open thread is created? We could pick something fantastic and geek out about it, quoting the best lines and all that, or we could pick something terrible (they have Skinny Bitch!) and rip it apart, quoting the best lines and all that.