posted on Nov, 17 2008 @ 04:46 AM
I am an AVID reader.
I read an average of 3 books a week. I started reading novels at age 10. I have done an honest estimate of the number of books I've read since I was
10 yeas old and come up with approximately 3600 books. It only takes me about 3 to 4 hours to read the average 280 page novel. I average about 80
pages an hour and it is more like watching the sentences than actively reading the words. I'm something of a book freak. Needless to say I believe
reading is very important.
It makes me sad to add the following information:
" The following statistics about book publishing and reading were found on www.parapub.com,
1/3 of high school graduates never read another book for the rest of their lives.
42 percent of college graduates never read another book after college.
80 percent of U.S. families did not buy or read a book last year.
70 percent of U.S. adults have not been in a bookstore in the last five years.
57 percent of new books are not read to completion.
70 percent of books published do not earn back their advance.
70 percent of the books published do not make a profit.
(Source: Jerold Jenkins, www.JenkinsGroupInc.com)
53 percent read fiction, 43 percent read nonfiction. The favorite fiction category is mystery and suspense, at 19 percent.
55 percent of fiction is bought by women, 45 percent by men.
(Source: Publishers Weekly)
About 120,000 books are published each year in the U.S.
A successful fiction book sells 5,000 copies.
A successful nonfiction book sells 7,500 copies.
(Source: Authors Guild, www.authorsguild.org
The consensus is that we as a nation (USA) are becoming less literate rather than more. I just can't really imagine a life without books, but
most of our population does it.
I have asked people that I know and think highly of why they don't read. The predominant answer is usually "Why should I?" I used to give
reasons like education, personal growth ect. but it never seemed to have any real effect. It has bothered me for a long time.
Now I have a new answer.
The average published writer spends about 8 months (estimated from many sources) writing a book. Wether it is fact,fiction, adventure, romance,
history, biography autobiograpy,how-too, science... no matter what... somebody spent 2/3rds of a year of thought,effort and personal drive into that
book. Many of those books are a culmination of a lifetime of writing and years of research. Include rewrites and editing and I believe a year would be
a very low actual time investment from the average writer. So lets just give it a year of effort as a nice even number.
Having read 3600 books myself. I can honestly say that I've had the benefit of 3600 years worth of other peoples efforts.
Think about that. 50 lifetimes of creativity, thought, emotions, wisdom, dreams, experiences. Let that sink in for a few .
Are most of us here on ATS nonreaders or readers?
Give me your thoughts on this if you like. Reasons why and why not are welcome. List your favorites if you like.
I'm looking forward to an interesting thread. Please add your favorites. Especially good books that we might be interested here on ATS if
you've read them and think they rate a nod.
I think my favorite writer at this point has to be Neil Stevenson. His Baroque Cycle books were great but Cryptonomicon gets my vote his
My favorite book recently has to be "Neverwhere" by Neil Gaiman.
My all time favorites are "The Killer" Angels by Michael Sharra
"Enders Game" By Orson Scott Card
and "On Writing-a Memoir of the Craft"
by Stephen King.
I encourage you readers out there to try them out. I will use your replies to make a list of some of my prospective future reads as well.
I'm only 41. If I keep it up, maybe I can get in another 50 lifetimes.
Is that a good enough reason to read?