I can’t read fiction when I’m on a tight deadline. I can’t look through anyone else’s eyes but mine at anything if I have to do a significant number of pages a day. I’m too susceptible to other’s voices, and have to much trouble breaking away from someone else’s world to find my own. I don’t know if other writers face this, but it’s been true for me since the beginning. Up to about 1500 words a day, I can read anything without conflict because even with the length of time it takes me to escape from another writer’s work and find my way back into my own, I’ll be able to get the necessary pages done.
But not at the 2000-words-or-greater level. Doing what I’m doing now, I have to have my story in my head to some degree all the time. No escape. Yet I have to read. So, when I do read, (morning when I wake up before I get out of bed, on the couch after I’m done for the day, while I’m eating), I read nonfiction.
My current read-or-reread list is:
- The Holocaust on Trial, by D.D. Guttenplan
- Internet World: Hosting Web Communities, by Cliff Figallo
- Surfing Through Hyperspace: Understanding Higher Universes in Six Easy Lessons, by Clifford A. Pickover
- Design for Community: The Art of Connecting Real People in Virtual Places, by Derek M. Powazek
- Web Design Site Goodies, by Joe Burns, Ph.D
- Dreams of a Final Theory: The Scientist’s Search for the Ultimate Laws of Nature, by Steven Weinberg
Depending on what you’re looking for, I recommend all of them. Good books.