|Where I live (taken on 19th November 2011) .|
On the whole, November was a good month in terms of productivity. I'm pleased that I completed NaNoWriMo, and am looking forward to start working on a second draft of my novel in the coming weeks. I've also read a lot, and enjoyed almost all of it. Clarissa was the largest of the reading products, and I was proud to have completed it, however I really did love it, and finishing a book you love so much is a little bittersweet! Also, with my cat dying less than a week ago, November is tinged with great sadness, despite the successes on the way.
November has been full of preparations for reading challenges in 2012, and I'm really very excited for the new year, however, there are still a few hours left of November, and I don't want to wish December away, so I'm going to focus on the month ahead, as well as these remaining hours!
Firstly, by the end of the day, I want to have finished Night and Day (Virginia Woolf) and one more Shakespeare play. My Shakespeare Challenge, in which I hoped to have finished the plays by the end of the year, took a massive knock with NaNoWriMo, so I don't have any expectations right now as to when I'll finish, though I think with Allie's challenge in January, it could be by 31st January. By tonight, I'll have read 15, so perhaps by the end of December I can get it up to 30. I can't say I'm completely enjoying it, however there are a few plays that I have loved. I read The Two Gentlemen of Verona last night, and liked it very much, particularly Speed and the exchange between Speed and Valentine in Act II Scene 1. Anthony and Cleopatra, Timon of Athens, and Julius Caesar are other favourites.
I think through December I would like to focus on Virginia Woolf. I have a list of sixteen of her major works, of which I've completed nine (ten by tonight), so I would like to complete the remaining six in December. I like the idea of working through an author's major works, so for the new year I would like to get another list for a new author together to work on through 2012, however I've not decided yet. And, if I am able to finish Shakespeare by the end of the year, my next focus will be the collected poems of Ted Hughes. I'm going to put up a page later, and aim to start it on 1st January (I'm going against what I said before about focusing on December - can't help it!).
Back to December: I've signed up for two of Allie's Reads - Sense and Sensibility, and Paradiso - the final cantica of The Divine Comedy. I need some incentive to read Sense and Sensibility, having never managed to get passed the first two chapters, and I've read Inferno and Purgatorio with her in October and November. Here is a good opportunity for me to say I'm grateful to her for these read-alongs for giving me the incentive to read The Divine Comedy. I loved Inferno very much, though I didn't much care for Purgatorio. I didn't hate it, I just wasn't into it as much as I thought I would have been. But I am very much looking forward to starting Paradiso.
I feel I can be fairly ambitious when it comes to reading this month because, firstly, Dead White Guys has a readathon on Saturday - (I'll pick my books either tomorrow or the next day), and secondly I'll have a lot of time to myself (Big C is a singer, so December is beyond hectic, and I won't be going to all of the gigs with him). So, aside from the above mentioned books, I would also like to keep on going with my Bible Challenge, as well as read one more title from my 100 Greatest Books. I would like one of those books to be Moby Dick, and am hoping to read along with a friend. Finally, I have signed up to read Middlemarch as it was published. The details are here, and it starts tomorrow.
So, to recap December plans:
- The Voyage Out, Virginia Woolf
- The Years, Virginia Woolf
- Between the Acts, Virginia Woolf
- The Common Reader 2nd Series, Virginia Woolf
- Three Guineas, Virginia Woolf
- A Haunted House: The Complete Shorter Fiction, Virginia Woolf
- Moby Dick, Herman Melville
- Sense and Sensibility, Jane Austen
- Paradiso, Dante
- Fifteen Shakespeare plays
- 'Miss Brooke' (first book of Middlemarch, George Eliot)
- Judges (Bible Challenge)
As for the remaining hours of today: Big C and I have been kicking around for days chilling out together before he starts his December madness (he's a singer, so he will be working a lot), and we've, once again, got the house a mess. I'm loathe to start a new month in a mess, so I'm going to get on with some housework! And then, as I say, read one Shakespeare play and finish Night and Day. Lots to do....