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It’s the 1st of January and a brand new day of a brand new year! Like every year, this day today holds out so much promise of life and all that we wish to seek! So in the way of seeking new adventures,  I thought instead of doing resolutions of what I shall and most likely shall not end up doing this year, I would rather map out some reading projects for the year, inspired by my two blogy mentors/inspiration/guides Stefanie and Jane. (I don’t think either one of them signed up for it, but I kind of adopted and relegated them to that role!)

Prior to reading about their reading projects, (which I followed quite closely) I was always hesitant and uncomfortable with a reading plan – planning somehow meant work! Could have been a Project Manager hangover where I work through MS Projects and Project Plans through the day or it could have been a hangover from my undergrad days where a systematized reading of English Literature, almost killed my love for fiction and literature! (Hence I ran away to do a Masters and pursue a Ph.D in International Politics!) Needless to say I was not a project reader.

New Year is however about new adventure and so I take a leap into a new challenge and sally forth bravely with the following reading projects –

  1. 2014 Historical Fiction Reading Challenge – I have already gone yada yada about this project in my earlier post and I think I will spare you the tedium of re-reading about it all over again
  2. A Century of Books – This is completely Jane’s idea; I have been mulling over it for some time and some encouragement from Jane and a coincidence of ideas about the time period we both were contemplating, made this kind of like a prophetic  thing to take up! I mean this was like faith – here I was thinking about doing a Century of Books effective 1850-1949 and an hour later I turn on my laptop and Jane had written about the same thing! The rules are simple and extremely flexible – read a book published for that year with a different author and then you naturally post about it. So basis each year of the Century, one book and one author and one related post over a period of 2 years! 2016 should see me significantly more well-read!
  3. Books on History – I am not quite sure when and how did this happen; but until a couple of years ago I used to read History as voraciously as literature and was even contemplating doing a second Masters in History. Then all of a sudden I stopped – no idea why! But now is as good as a time to take this up and I plan to read at least a minimum of 12 history books this year – one book every month; not restricting myself to geography/country/politics!
  4. Poetry – I AM NOT A POETRY PERSON!!! I often get many astonished glances that a person who reads practically any written word should not like poetry; but somehow I never quite managed to gather my liking for rhymes and sonnets, except perhaps Emily Dickinson and Robert Browning! But new adventures means trying to develop new tastes and trying new things and Stefanie has shared some lovely works on Poetry – so poetry it is; but only 4 volumes in no order or preference. Will come to that later if and when I develop a taste, until then 4 volumes for 2014; what and who will I read, I still have to decipher!

That’s the agenda for 2014 – I promise to do a review of this plan on June 01 2014 and then December 31st 2014!

To end, it is always important to plunge right in after deciding on the plan of attack; I end this blog with poem by Lord Tennyson. I believe this one is quite famous. In fact a non-poetry person like me also knew it, but I love the theme, the optimism and the concept so here goes – Happy New Year and best wishes of all the good things life has to offer, hope they all come true in 2014!

In Memoriam,

by Lord Alfred Tennyson

Ring out, wild bells, to the wild sky,

The flying cloud, the frosty light:

The year is dying in the night;

Ring out, wild bells, and let him die.

Ring out the old, ring in the new,

Ring, happy bells, across the snow:

The year is going, let him go;

Ring out the false, ring in the true.

Ring out the grief that saps the mind

For those that here we see no more;

Ring out the feud of rich and poor,

Ring in redress to all mankind.

Ring out a slowly dying cause,

And ancient forms of party strife;

Ring in the nobler modes of life,

With sweeter manners, purer laws.

Ring out the want, the care, the sin,

The faithless coldness of the times;

Ring out, ring out my mournful rhymes

But ring the fuller minstrel in.

Ring out false pride in place and blood,

The civic slander and the spite;

Ring in the love of truth and right,

Ring in the common love of good.

Ring out old shapes of foul disease;

Ring out the narrowing lust of gold;

Ring out the thousand wars of old,

Ring in the thousand years of peace.

Ring in the valiant man and free,

The larger heart, the kindlier hand;

Ring out the darkness of the land,

Ring in the Christ that is to be.

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