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Books...

So, I have joined the 50bookchallenge because I need a...community? prodding? goal? something like that. :) I have never logged all the books I have read in one year, but i figured this year might be a good idea... Anyway, I see myself probably making 50 quite easily, but I have a few questions... I know the FAQ and user info for this community say log what seems right to me, but...
1) Do audio books count?
2) Should I log books that are favourites that I read year after year?
3) Does fanfic count? Not short fanfic, but stuff that takes more than an hour or two to read? For me that would equal to about 120-150 page book...
4) Audiobooks that I have either read or listened to before?
5) How would you count short story anthologies? (its one of my larger collections i hope to get thru this year and read the ones i havent yet)
6) What if you start a book and don't finish it...can I count it as half? Audiobook too? (I am a big audiobook freak.) :)
Any other ideas from others? I feel guilty about including some of these, but I really want too.... The spreadsheet Im keeping my log in has a column for type (novel, anthology, etc) should i just log everything there and sort it out at the end of the year?
So far I've done 3 novels and 2 long fanfics (one i was at work reading until 1am one night it was that good...)

I would appreciate any input of these questions as I start a new challenge (its not so much the reading for me, as it is the logging of the books, and will I still log them two months from now...), I hope to finish. :)
Thanks.
x-posted to [Unknown LJ tag]
jennielf

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semyaza
Jan. 10th, 2007 05:41 am (UTC)
You should do whatever you feel comfortable with. If I were doing it I would say: no, yes, maybe, no, yes, no. I've been keeping a log of my reading for donkey's years and I don't record what I don't finish. It has to be a book (i.e. something published between covers or the online equivalent). Unfinished stuff gets recorded elsewhere (diary, reading LJ) so that I remember it. The unfinished books add up to quite a lot in a year, but I don't feel right about including them with the others. I suppose I'm still stuck on the idea of reading something from cover to cover. :)
jennielf
Jan. 10th, 2007 05:50 am (UTC)
So, why not audiobooks? Is it the whole between covers thing? I'm curious...
Also, i have found that I read mostly fantasy and sci-fi as books, but most of the regular fiction or non-fiction stuff ive read has been as audiobooks...Like the next audiobook on my plate is The Geographer's Library I almost picked it up in a bookstore, but decided to get the audio version instead... I read The Thirteenth Tale as an audiobook recently as well, I guess because I didnt want to spend the money on a hardback? So, seriously, why do audiobooks not count on your list? I'm very curious...
I mean, I'm hesitating more over whether to log fanfic than i am audiobooks...
semyaza
Jan. 10th, 2007 05:32 pm (UTC)
I suppose it would depend partly on whether the audiobook was abridged. If it's abridged, then it would be equivalent to reading part of a book. But for me, the experience of listening to something being read is quite different from the experience of giving my full attention--at my own speed and in my own inner voice--to the book between my hands. If the comm doesn't distinguish between the two, then go for it. :)
semyaza
Jan. 10th, 2007 05:51 pm (UTC)
I also meant to add that the brain processes spoken and written language differently; some people have better comprehension with spoken language, others with written language. The two aren't equivalent. So I don't think that listening to a book is "the same" as reading it. Better for some and not as good for others.
rwdrake
Jan. 10th, 2007 06:12 am (UTC)
50 books
You're going to knock out 50 books in nothing flat!

Were it me, I'd not count audiobooks. I do think listening and reading are different.

I would count books that you read even if read before. If you read it, you've read it.

Short Story anthologies are tough. Depends on whether it's "Best Sci-fi writing of 2006" or "The Complete Norton Anthonology of American Short Stories" When in doubt, every 300 pages counts for 1.

I do think Fan faction counts. In some ways it should count even more as it's likely tougher to read (unless you have a great e-book platform)

Go get 'em! I, personally, am on my 3rd book of the year right now.

jennielf
Jan. 10th, 2007 06:43 am (UTC)
Re: 50 books
Why is listening and reading different??
I enjoy audiobooks for the sheer pleasure of slowing it (the input of info (reading vs. listening) down and having to take in more details...
I have read more regular fiction books on audio than in "book" format, and i clearly retain and remember just as many details as i do from reading a regular book. Also, there are books taht I own both hard copy and audio of, but i prefer audio because the reading/performance is such a sheer pleasure... Audio also keeps me occupied on long trips...
I am very very interested in this...why do audiobooks not "count"????
tyleet1047
Jan. 10th, 2007 12:07 pm (UTC)
Re: 50 books
You're going to knock out 50 books in nothing flat!

LOL - i second that comment.

Were it me, I'd not count audiobooks. I do think listening and reading are different.

i think they are different but i don't want to chain jennielf to a chair/couch/partially-horizontal-surface for months on end either... plus audiobooks take so much longer to read.

I would count books that you read even if read before. If you read it, you've read it.

Yeah but in a lot of cases reading it the second time takes much less time and involves much less concentration... i dunno... elf=lady, i may amend my statement to this extent: rereading is OK if we're talking about something crazy like Ulysses (heck pretty much anything by Joyce) or Jane Eyre or Faulkner or even Michael Chrichton or Stephen King or Nora Roberts, but I would draw the line at annual re-reads. Somehow it seems like you've probably half-memorized those books already; i would count the annual memory-refreshing exercise.

Short Story anthologies are tough. Depends on whether it's "Best Sci-fi writing of 2006" or "The Complete Norton Anthonology of American Short Stories" When in doubt, every 300 pages counts for 1.

why wouldn't the sci-fi writing count as much as the norton anthology? especially given your fan fiction comment down below... i mean i imagine that neither anthology would be much fun... but hey, it takes all types. of course the only anthologies i read are written by Neil Gaiman, Ray Bradbury, or various trashy romance novelists. whee!

I do think Fan faction counts. In some ways it should count even more as it's likely tougher to read (unless you have a great e-book platform)

i think it's generally tougher to read because so much of it is SO BAD. see earlier comment re: general disdain.
jennielf
Jan. 10th, 2007 02:32 pm (UTC)
Re: 50 books
ok, so your general disdain of fanfic stems from it being bad... i have got to introduce you to some of the authors i read...they are better than some professional authors i have read.
This is awesome...and yeah, why wouldnt any of my sf/f anthologies count for robert, they are book size! :)
See, i have no problem with audiobooks, but i dont think i am going to count the ones (usually discworld) that i listen to to go to sleep....
tyleet1047
Jan. 10th, 2007 11:56 am (UTC)
hmm... this is how i would do it:

1 - count the audio book or the hard-cover, but only once per book. i figure it's the experience of the book that matters, not necessarily reading v. listening. also, audiobooks are a much bigger time commitment and allows you to 'read' while doing other things - like walking or driving or exercising - which potentially keeps you from being too sedentary.

2 - do not count the annual re-reads. you've experienced those books before, they do not count.

3 - fanfic absolutely does NOT count. why? b/c it's not a Book. I don't care how long it is, it's not a book. plus it's fanfic - may it cower in the wake of my general disdain

4. again, NO. First-time experiences only.

5. when you finish the anthology, you've finished the book. Voila!

6. NO. 50 books means 50 *finished* books. ok i say that now... you might keep track of them and see how many there are at the end of the time period you've set for this thing... maybe each can be a quarter of a book? i'm all about completionism... this is why i almost NEVER beat video games....

this is a cool idea, but i think this year is already going to be too crazy for me to join in... maybe i'll join you for a month or something. i pretty much plow through books like crazy and then rate them on amazon.com - in a few instances i even review them, but that's rare for me... good luck!
jennielf
Jan. 10th, 2007 02:22 pm (UTC)
ah ha! see, thats i think the answer i was looking for... i have several people tell me just generally no or yes to audiobooks...
I agree with you, i think it is definetly the experience of the book, not necessarily the form... hrm....


btw - why such a general disdain for fanfic?
tyleet1047
Jan. 10th, 2007 02:31 pm (UTC)
i'd say a good 75% of it (at least) is poorly written. that and it's sooooo close to copyright fraud it makes my head hurt. transformative use my ass.

although, to be fair, my friend Faith's IP journal note (which, sadly, we were not able to publish) was all about fanfic and the legal ramifications are muddy at best and kinda fascinating to work with... i think i'd rather prosecute fanfic than read it :P

(oh course there's no real $$ in prosecuting fanfic since no one really profits off of it and the people who get real tangible benefits tend to be the original authors)


joewent
Jan. 10th, 2007 12:02 pm (UTC)
Don't forget, you're also required to include a biography by Robert Caro, and Rememberance of Things Past by Marcel Proust among your 50 books. :-D
jennielf
Jan. 10th, 2007 02:33 pm (UTC)
oh. um. ok... WHY??? who is robert caro? :)
joewent
Jan. 10th, 2007 03:12 pm (UTC)
I'm just sayin...

Of course, right now I'm reading his biography of Robert Moses, who was New York's Parks Commissioner for about 30 or 40 years. The book is about 1200 pages.

Caro's other biography is three 1000+ page volumes about Lyndon Johnson :-D
jennielf
Jan. 10th, 2007 05:41 pm (UTC)
um, love you joe...um, no. :)
sorry.
maybe later? :) it sounds interesting, dont get me wrong, but im not a big fan of biographies or memoirs.
joewent
Jan. 10th, 2007 03:15 pm (UTC)
Oh yeah. And I agree with Cathy.

The Best American Non-Required Reading series is fun, and I certainly wouldn't exclude any of them from the 50 books list.
cathalexp
Jan. 10th, 2007 02:47 pm (UTC)
- I would count auidobooks, but that is just me.
- I would recount things you re-read, because hey you read them. Same with audio books
- I would count anthologies if you read the whole thing.
- I would not count half stuff.

But I think that since you are doing this for your own self-betterment, you can do whatever you want. It is a free internet :)
jennielf
Jan. 10th, 2007 05:28 pm (UTC)
woo-hoo! free internet from Cathy!

oh...no wait... :)
Spiffy. thats what i figured, but...
caseofme
Jan. 11th, 2007 05:24 am (UTC)
That is a good idea. Although the thought of reading 50 books in a year is daunting for me what with my busy home and work life. I might join the community but it seems fairly busy now that it has been in LJ spotlight.
( 19 Tummy Rubs — Pet Angela? )