Discussion Post: Readers & Fitness


Ok, let’s talk about a thing that bothers me. (because what else is a blog for??)

You know this idea that readers/bookworms/writers are secluded nerds with no athletic ability or physical fitness?

[If you don’t know, it’s totally a thing. See pictures.]

Logically, this stereotype sorta makes sense. It’s not very easy to read while exercising (although the prevalence of ebooks & audiobooks has made it lots easier!). So when we grow up, we have to choose between reading or playing sports. And most people choose one and mostly ignore the other. It’s a real thing. Bookworms like their tea/coffee & blankets. Inside. Not exercising.

hermioneBut I have a lots of problems with this stereotype. Not because I don’t like blankets or coziness. (I don’t drink tea or coffee. I knooooow, it’s weird! You can stop throwing things.) Also, not because I think jocks/athletic people can’t be bookish (they definitely can be).

I’ve been very systematically observing bookworms for a few months now (maybe a year? what is time???) and I’ve reached a conclusion.

Ready?

Lots of readers and writers love moving and being outdoors. Like, really love it.

Writers talk/write/post often about how physical activity helps them sort through plotting/writing issues. They walk. They run marathons. They do yoga (or aerial yoga–looking at you, Gwenda Bond!). And I’m sure many of them are active but don’t post about it.

 

Readers are the same. I play soccer. I run. Have played sports basically my entire life. Readers carry huge stacks of books. Readers play with their dogs. Readers stand in long lines to meet authors.

But here’s the most irritating thing about this stereotype.

We–the readers, the writers, the lovers of books–perpetuate it. We embrace it. 

I’m far more likely to share a funny book meme than something about running. I’m more likely to post a picture of my book than a post-workout selfie. It’s time for that to change.

Can we make bookstagram/booktube/book blogs/etc. encompass all our interests? Can we stop pretending that we all live in book burritos all day?bookburrito

Can we ditch this idea that readers avoid outdoors and activity at all costs? We’re strong enough to imagine others complexly. (h/t to the Green brothers, obviously)

Writing Advice from Read Up Greenville


As a career writer and aspiring fiction author, I really enjoy the writing advice that successful authors offer at conferences. It’s equal parts discouraging reality (12 years to publish??) and encouraging normality (they’re real humans like me!).

I don’t want to recreate all of the keynotes/panels, but I jotted down a few interesting points.

Jay Asher

It takes years for the ideas to come together. Several authors have mentioned this concept–basically, the idea for a story starts many, many years before they’re finally able to write it. In some ways, that gives me hope, but Continue reading

Lyse Links: Snow weekend edition!


Here are some articles to keep you occupied until the snow melts away and you resume normal life.

Thoughts on these? Read something interesting that I would like? Let me know in the comments!

Book Review: Eat, Pray, Love


Eat,_Pray,_Love_–_Elizabeth_Gilbert,_2007Title: Eat, Pray, Love

Author: Elizabeth Gilbert

Type: Memoir

I’m clearly ages behind on popular fiction. Eat, Pray, Love was published in 2006 and released as a film in 2010 — 5 years ago! But I just read it for the first time, so here’s a review for the rest of you like me. 

Eat, Pray, Love describes Elizabeth Gilbert’s journey to find happiness, peace, and balance in her life following a divorce and nasty break-up. She spends a year living in Italy, India, and Indonesia (Bali), writing about her experiences along the way. In Italy she dedicates her time to pleasure — taking in the sites, eating delicious food, and learning the language. India is for devotion, so she spends her entire time at an ashram, meditating and finding her way to deity. Indonesia is her key to balancing pleasure and dedication, the place where she learns to love again.

I liked the book. Initially though, I couldn’t explain why. Gilbert’s entire journey is about spiritual discovery, filled with meditation, visions from gurus, and conversations with herself. Continue reading