For the past couple of months, I’ve been in a bit of a reading slump. I can only put this down to one thing, and that’s studying.
It’s not that I don’t enjoy studying, because I do. I love it. I am perennial student, currently doing an English Literature degree with the Open University. Each module that I study comes with a long reading list. I’ve just completed a module on the nineteenth century novel, which involved reading these books.
I’m now studying a module on twentieth century literature, which involves reading these books.
And while I love reading and studying, it doesn’t really leave much time for my own reading. It’s a long time since I read book after book just for pleasure, without having to analyse or write an essay on it.
I’ve missed it.
I’ve missed the freedom of being able to discover new writers. I’ve missed being able to choose what I’m reading. I’ve missed being able to explore my interests, my love of African literature for example.
I’ve enjoyed every minute of studying for my English Literature degree. The course has covered so much, including Shakespeare, romantic writing, realism, literature and gender, the Victorian novel, and now the twentieth century. But, after six years of having my reading dictated to me, I’m ready to have my freedom back. It’ll be like rediscovering my reading influences all over again. The hundreds of books that are in my book room just waiting to be read, will now have a chance of actually being read.
It’s my final module with the Open University, and I want to enjoy it, but I also want to get a balance with my own reading. I’ve picked out a few books to get me started.
At the back of my mind is the idea that eventually I would like to study for a master’s degree in contemporary literature. I’ve even seen a course that would allow me to specialise in African literature. However, before I get carried away and sign up, I want to get out of this reading slump, and get my reading back on track.