Brit’s Book Beat

I collect a few kinds of things.

One of my favorite places is the flea market. I like unique chairs. I’ve inherited Pyrex in Amish Butterprint and continued the collection. You’ll also find books. Many of them have found me when I needed them. The rest are likely from when I was left to my own devices at the bookstore. #sorrynotsorry

The main reason I wanted to put together a reading list was to help me remember I have things to read already.¬† The full list will be on my Good Reads soon. ūüôā

I love books!

I love how they look. I love the different ways to organize and display them. There are never enough shelves for them. I think the main reasons I don’t have more bookshelves are:

  1. I have a lot of books.
  2. I am not good at putting things back where they belong.
  3. Empty shelf space = Buy. More. Books.

Now for the reading lists! I promise they’re short.


Next Up Reading List – A short list of books I’m reading next. I swear. Stop distracting me with sales, Various Book Stores of America.

–¬†Sunshine State¬†by Sarah Gerard
–¬†Naming the World¬†edited by Bret Anthony Johnston
–¬†My Life on the Road¬†by Gloria Steinem
–¬†Buffering¬†by Hannah Hart
–¬†Hemingway Didn’t Say That¬†by Garson O’Toole

Read These Books List- Books I really like and think you’ll like too… if you’re into that sort of thing.

–¬†One More Thing¬†by B.J. Novak
–¬†The Glass Castle¬†by Jeannette Walls
–¬†Grief is the Thing with Feathers¬†by Max Porter
–¬†Let’s Pretend This Never Happened¬†by Jenny Lawson

My Fave Classics –¬†Basically what I read in high school that shaped my understanding of the world.

Tess of D’Ubervilles¬†
The Great Gatsby
To Kill A Mockingbird
Fahrenheit 451


I’ve got a small favor to ask. Tell me about your reading (or writing) life.

If you enjoy it: Do you find yourself, with enough time, thinking about your world like one of the characters? Do you follow authors or genres?
If you don’t enjoy it:¬†How/When do you lose interest? What other hobbies do you have?

It felt like lightning.

Last night an artist that I am a fan of did a secret show. Josh Ritter took the stage at Analog, picked up an acoustic guitar and sang out love, excitement, and inspiration. There was a short question period and I asked the first one: How does your creative process work?

He talked through it, sharing how he gets a melody and then adds the words in his head. He writes it all down when he gets a minute, sometimes without with travel and parenting mercies.

Mid-discussion, he asked how I write. My heart fluttered and I felt a little bit of vomit in my mouth. This guy is in town to play the Ryman and asking about my writing process. I paused – Oh, what? He was still looking at me. I blurted a bit about my poetry, how the second and third stanza comes quickly, and how it’s usually never in order.

He understood. He quoted Cohen, “If I knew where the songs came from, I’d go there more often.” Sometimes we don’t know how long a piece will be, or how it will impact us.¬†He told me, reminded me and the room that the process really only matters to us and it can be different every time. Inspiration can often feel invisible to us but it’s there, waiting for us to make something of it.

After a few more questions and songs, I got pictures with him. He thanked me for the question. He asked more about what books I’m reading and what I’m writing. I gave him a witty line about how I write what paying my bills and the premise of my fiction piece. I was gobsmacked when he smiled and asked more questions about where I am with the fiction.

My husband was beaming with pride when shared how surprised he was that such a dark premise came from my head. He talked with him about his current hit and how I was shocked he knew the words without me sharing it with him. The three of us talked together about how nice it is to be partnered with someone smarter than you. He hugged us again and we left.

It was humbling to hear someone sing so poignantly and be invested in those he was singing to. I wasn’t the only one who felt this. The room was a buzz of adoration in every direction.

As I write this, I’m still beside myself with what could be some sort of external validation. It could be the residue of gratitude that experiences like this fill us up with.

I know it’s the pinnacle of every choice I’ve made up until that point but with more reflection, I get more questions. How do I continue the magic of that interaction? How will I know when it’s my turn to invest in someone, even if for a fleeting moment?

If you know, I’m here to listen and receive it.