Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Reading Depravation

Week 4 of "The Artist's Way".

One of the exercises that Julia Cameron suggests in the book is "Reading Depravation". A week long, deliberate fast from reading newspapers, magazines, books, and blogs. She explains her reasoning this way, "For most artists, words are like tiny tranquilzers. We have a daily quota of media chat that we swallow up. Like greasy food, it clogs our system. To much of it and we feel, yes, fried."

She goes on to say "Without distractions, we ae once again thrust into the sensory world. With no novel to sink into (and no television to numb us out) an evening becomes a vast savannah in which furniture - and outher assumptions - gets rearranged.......We gobble the word of others rather than digest our own thoughts and feelings, rather than cook up something of our own."
I don't know about you, but I carry reading material nearly everywhere I go in order not to get bored. I hang out at the bookstore for fun and peruse blogs daily just to see what's up. How is it possible to spend a week not reading?! Telling me not to read for a week is like telling me not to breathe for a week.

Fascinating idea, yet frightening for some reason I don't yet understand.

Which is exactly why I'm going to try it.

Starting today, I'm commited to one week of not reading books (not surprisingly, Ms. Cameron does allow for the reading of The Artist's Way), magazines - including the new version of O magazine I bought yesterday, no blog reading and putting most emails on hold (don't be offended if yours is one).

Not sure how to fill my time. What would you do if you gave up reading or tv for an entire week?

I'll read your answers when I return. ;-)

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