On becoming a DNF-er

April 11, 2015

I have a problem. I finish books. All books.

In actual fact, it isn’t usually a problem, since I’ve picked the books and I generally know what I like, but sometimes I’m (hold on to your hats, folks) wrong. And when that happens I have the book-nerdiest of wars raging within me. On the one hand, I started this book and I’m not really enjoying it, but what if it gets better?! If I stop reading now, I’ll never know! On the other hand, I’m not enjoying it and there are so many other books that I want to read. There are times when I actually get sad thinking about all the books I won’t have a chance to read simply because life is too short.

So what’s a book nerd to do? Well, I’ve been tracking my reading for a while now and I figure that if I really wanted to (and if I was any good at math, but details) I could calculate a rough estimate of how many more books I will read in my lifetime. I have absolutely zero inclination to do this, but there’s nothing like the harsh reality of estimated numbers to spur a girl into action — even if that action happens to be the cessation of one (i.e. abandoning a book partway through and moving on).

Since coming to this realization I’ve only DNFed (that’s Did Not Finish-ed for those who’ve yet to memorize the book nerd code book) a couple of books. Being a bitter-ender is still my default and I find myself rationalizing and continuing past the point where I should probably give up time and again. But I’ll keep working on it. Who knew quitting took so much practice?

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