|Spot Trot :)|
(This picture has next to nothing to do with the contents of this post, unless you're curious about what my desk is like and where my budgie sometimes sits when I'm writing!)
It doesn't feel like Monday today because yesterday I was pretty active, determined that I would do everything I set out to do. And I almost did - did two hours writing (well, one hour fifty minutes, but I'd reached the right time to stop), got the exercise in, got the reading in, was up early, in bed early, did the boring household chores... In fact, the only thing I didn't manage to get in was the Greek, but the boring household chores took ages and were very necessary.
So, today, I'm planning more of the same, only with some Greek!
And yesterday, I also started The Mill on the Floss. I'm not far through by any stretch, I don't think I've even read thirty pages yet, but so far I'm really enjoying it. I'm not surprised as such, but it makes me think about giving authors or books a second chance. You may remember I read Middlemarch in March and it was an absolute disaster. I could not engage with it, I couldn't find it interesting, it left me absolutely cold. And The Iliad - I hated it. The best review I could manage was "it was gross" (and parts of it really are gross). The Iliad made me feel stupid, and sadly, The Odyssey didn't go terribly well either. This means, one day in the next year or few years, I would like to return to them both. Give them, or me, a second chance.
I don't want to curse it, but I think giving George Eliot, or myself (perhaps that's more fair) a second chance is going to work out well. I say with great caution, I do believe I will really love this book. Like Elizabeth Gaskell - I did not care in the slightest for The Cranford Chronicles (giving it two stars on Goodreads showed enormous generosity on my part), but I absolutely loved North and South.
The first Virginia Woolf book I read was To The Lighthouse and I loved it, and went on to develop quite an infatuation with Woolf in my twenties, read her major novels, and yet, when I finally came to it, I didn't like Between the Acts at all. And Charles Dickens - I'm a big fan of Dickens now and am working through his novels, however it took years to get into him (regretably, this is the most popular post on my blog). On the other hand, Jane Austen has almost entirely run out of chances: I've read all but one of her best known novels (Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice, Emma, Northanger Abbey, and Persuasion, with only Mansfield Park left) and the closest I got to "vaguely liking" was Northanger Abbey (which made me look forward to The Mysteries of Uldopho). So second chances do not always work out.
Yet, I'm a firm believer in them now. There are some authors, maybe all authors, who will write something that leaves one cold, but I have too much experience now in surprise turn-arounds. I would now never write-off a writer because of one bad experience, and I'm glad I'm enjoying George Eliot at last.
Does anyone else have an author who they hated but now love?