Here’s something I don’t bother doing: lying about what I haven’t read. It’s my general feeling that even the most exhaustive readers have some major blind spots in their reading history. And I’m not saying something like, “Oh, I’ve not yet had a chance to finish the last volume Remembrance of Things Past.” I’m talking about things like, “I’ve never read Jane Austen. Or George Orwell.” Both of which are true for me. No Pride and Prejudice. No Animal Farm.
It’s not just adult books, either. I never read A Wrinkle in Time. Or any of the Narnia books. I’ve never read Judy Blume. Or Roald Dahl. For god’s sake, I’ve never even read The Giver.
I’m not saying I won’t ever read these authors or books. I just haven’t yet. And I think that’s fine. Better that than faking it, as far as I’m concerned. Not to say that anyone in publishing would ever fake having read something in order to sound smarter. (AHAHAHAHAHAHA)
So admit it: there are giant blind spots in your own reading history. Get it off your chest: what are they? What novel can you not even believe you haven’t read? What book has been sitting on your bedside table for seven years that you still haven’t picked up? Cough. Crime and Punishment. Cough.
And do you ever lie to save face, or does that feel like a fool’s errand to you?