Last night, I had a meeting with my book club (not to be confused with DGLM book club, which meets next week). On the subway home, I was thinking how much fun it had been to leave work and drink wine and talk about books. The great thing is that while last night was for fun, it’s often my job to leave work and drink wine and talk about books. At my lunch meeting yesterday (no wine, since publishing’s moved on from the drinking lunch, sadly), we talked about our own lists and a novel I’m shopping that I think this editor will love (now on submission to her, so fingers crossed!). We also chatted extensively about books we’d read and loved that have nothing to do with either of our companies, which is pretty much what happens when I get together with friends as well. Sometimes my personal life and my professional life are similar in the best possible ways.
Reflecting on this brought to mind the debate those of us in publishing go through before every long weekend or vacation: work reading or pleasure reading or both? We breathlessly discuss which books we’re taking on our vacations. There’s intense analysis of the towering To Read piles and lengthy lists—what to bring? How many? E-reader or hard copy or both? What are you reading? Which of these did you like more? Should I bring some manuscripts or put all work aside?
I can’t recall ever hearing someone in publishing say, “I can’t wait for vacation! I’m not going to read anything.” A total vacation from publishing means cramming your suitcase with a huge stack of books that you don’t have a vested interest in, not taking a break from books.
It occurs to me that publishing is an industry all about the busman’s holiday. Frankly, I wouldn’t have it any other way!
Any suggestions for what to cram into my suitcase for my vacation next month?