What Makes It A “Must-Read”?

Today’s Daily Post prompt asks how we pick what blogs and books we read, and if there’s anything that makes it a “must” to click that link or pick up that book.

I probably read a hundred or more articles a day, and by “read,” I mean everything from glancing through for keywords to devouring with zest. When we’re talking about social media posts that make me stop and participate, they either have to be funny and simple, like a GIF, photo, or cartoon, or else appeal to my empathy. Posts about dogs, cats, animal abuse, and animal causes are all big on my newsfeed. A few of my favorite animal and nature-related FB pages include Sir Stuffington, Give A Shit About NaturePit Bulls Against Misinformation, and Wild Wonders of Europe.

I also love Colonel Meow and Grumpy Cat (but who doesn't?)!

I follow Colonel Meow and Grumpy Cat, too. But who doesn’t?

Also, I dig anything about personal growth, spirituality, and connectedness. A few of my favorites in this category, like Humans of New YorkFat Girl, PhDThe Order of the Good Death, and MindBodyGreen.

Col. Chris Hadfield is a total rockstar, too!

Col. Chris Hadfield is a total rockstar, too!

But don’t assume that I spend all my time being a helpful, caring grown up. I definitely keep up on worthless celebrity gossip, and I follow a few FB fan pages of famous people I just lurve – like Kris Holden-ReidJoseph Gordon-LevittNorman ReedusSimon Pegg.

In addition, there are a few pages I follow for entirely escapist reasons, like Legal Nomads, Tiny House Listings, and TripTrotting.

When it comes to blogs, my favorites to read on a consistent basis tend to be pretty personal. I love “memoir” sites and journals, but typically the ones that are more truthful. I’m not as much into DIY or stories about being a happy homemaker as I am stories about depression, relationship issues, work struggles, and other worries. Not that I want to read sad stories, exactly – I just feel like most people have something they’re worrying about or otherwise trying to figure out, and it’s nice to get to be the silent sounding board. I’m not going to specify my favorite personal blogs here, because you know if I visit or not 🙂

One of my favorite Jane Austen quotes, available as an iron-on from Etsy seller Digital Things.

One of my favorite Jane Austen quotes, available as an iron-on from Digital Things.

Since so much of what I want to learn is online already, my current reading list much simpler than my list of Facebook ‘likes’. It’s also stayed pretty constant over the years – and by “years” I mean since I was about 8 or so.

Back in the day I loved horror stories by authors like R.L. Stine, science fiction & fantasy novels, and historical fiction. Today I love horror stories by Stephen King, fantasy novels by authors like Neil Gaiman, Mercedes Lackey, and Glen Cook, historical fiction by authors like Ariana Franklin (RIP – I can’t believe I’ll never read another Adelia Aguilar mystery!), and selected non-fiction. Most of my non-fiction falls into a few categories: self-help, food & cooking, spirituality & religion, and medieval architecture.

Are you devoted to Bones, murder mysteries and forensics stories? Even more, are you a fan of medieval history? If so, you're probably going to love these books as much as I do.

Are you devoted to Bones, murder mysteries and forensics stories? Even more, are you a fan of medieval history? If so, you’re probably going to love these books as much as I do.

Right now I’m reading Chasing Francis: A Pilgrim’s Tale, and Reveal: A Sacred Manual for Getting Spiritually Naked, albeit extremely slowly. The former is a fictional story (that reads like an autobiography) about a man who’s on a spiritual quest, who spends several weeks traveling Italy and learning about St. Francis. The latter is about celebrating sacred femininity.

So what do you read?

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