The Life of a Wannabe Academic

Detail of the life a new academic. The progress from graduate training to professor. Includes reflections on the job hunting process, research in technology and education, and what it is like to be a new college professor.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Joys of Summer

Ever since I started college I have usually taken time during my summers to engage in activities that get pushed to the back burner during the school year. Typically the school year involves an extensive amount of reading (required reading in college, required and research reading in grad school) along with the other work that is involved with higher education.

As a child I was always a voracious reader. As a youngster my mom read to me and my sister every night before bed (usually a Nancy Drew, the Hobbit, or the LOTR trilogy). As I got older I started reading for myself (many of the same stuff but included book series such as Black Beauty, The Babysitter's Club, and other such young readers). In high school this continued to more advanced and adult literature. However, when college started and I was overwhelmed by the amount of textbook reading, I just didn't have the time or energy to devote to leisure reading.

So it has now become my habit during the summer slumps to read books for fun and I usually do so in great amounts. This summer has basically been devoted to reading The Dark Tower series by Stephen King( I have read the first 4 books (a series of 7) over the past 3-4 years. This is King's attempt at his version of a LOTR type series, but has that unique King flair. It is not only a fantasy baby. This book is an integration of many different genres. Old western, futuristic, time travel, horror, and apocalyptic all in one. A good series if you can get into it. Like many King books you really don't get into the good stuff until the last quarter of the pages. I have read books 5 and 6 and have just started the finale book 7 (an 850 page monster!).

Whenever I start reading for fun I always wonder why I let it slip during the majority of the year. I love books where I just escape and envision a world created by the author (so much better than the movie). Hopefully I will be able to continue, but if the past is any indicator, once school starts up for me again, reading (for fun) will dwindle once again. At least that gives me sometime to look forward to every summer, though. Perhaps I should just try less complicated stories during the summer (one where I don't have to remember what happened 1500 pages ago!).


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