So I’ve been thinking about this for quite some time now, and I figured today was as good as any other day to blog it. This may be a rather morbid blog post, but I’d be willing to bet I’m not the only one here who has thought about what I’m about to say. I’ve been a big reader for as long as I can remember. Growing up I’d consume at least 2-4 books per week. I still remember gaining access to the “Adult” part of the library and feeling relief that I could read “real” books now. I’ve probably read thousands of books over my life time. Outside of family and friends, books are my greatest pleasure in life. My eldest seems to be picking up the same habit. He is only 8 but has already finished the Harry Potter series.
Now that I’m older, my reading has slowed down quite a bit. I read next to nothing when my first child came home and slowed down more as my next two kids arrived. They have all been home for many years now though so I’ve slowly increased my reading. I’m now reading about one book every two weeks, which with my schedule, seems reasonable enough.
I’m currently enjoying “A Game of Thrones”, one of a 5 book series I believe, and my first time reading George R. R. Martin. The book is incredible (especially after the disappointing novel I read before it). Now that I’ve started a new series of books, I can’t help but thinking…
What if I die before I finish?
I don’t mean to imply that I think I actually will die, but I do wonder about it. Imagine that you are lucky enough to live a long and fruitful life. You are 100 years old and still mentally all there. Unfortunately you know that - at a 100, your time is limited. Would you even pick up a 5 book series? Would you only read short books?
I’m sure most of my readers have various ideas about what the afterlife is like and I won’t even pretend to know what to expect. I can say that it’s probably unlikely that I’ll be able to hop over to the local neighborhood Borders up in Heaven. (Who knows though - Amazon may service up there!) I mean - some folks think all you do in Heaven is sit and praise God. Frankly I’d be happy to have more time for loved ones and more time to read.
So given that you might not be able to read any more in the after life, and given that you have a small idea of when you will die, would you rush to finish your current book and simply… stop? Would you try to get in one more “classic” or instead decide to make your final book some romance or spy (trash) novel? Let’s make it more morbid. Imagine you did start some epic series (and I definitely recommend Martin’s series, it’s called A Song of Ice and Fire) and only get half way through. You’re in the hospital. Would you ask a loved one to quickly jump on Wikipedia so you can at least know how things end up? I mean one of my biggest complaints about SciFi TV shows is that when they get cancelled, you never find out how things turn out. I’d have the same disappointment with a book. Or is all this way too geeky?