Why Time Magazine?
I often get asked the question: “Why the Time Magazine list?”
That’s usually followed up with “Why not the Modern Library list? Or why not create your own?”
All fair questions.
The short answer: Time had the first list that popped up on Google when I was researching books for a summer vacation. Great SEO, Time.
The longer answer: I love lists. Making my own “list” is basically what I’ve been doing my whole life. I pick what I want to read, and I read it. Ironically, that approach had severely limited my reading.
Before this project, and despite being an English major, I felt my exposure to the classics was sorely lacking. So that’s why the Time list was appealing, as opposed to creating my own list.
Here’s a list of 100 novels that two esteemed literary critics thought were the best of the best. The Modern Library list is pretty awesome, too, but I thought Time’s list was more varied, a little more untraditional, and I liked that.
So that’s how my “association” with Time got started.
I use the term association loosely because Time Magazine hardly knows this little blogger exists. A couple of years ago, I landed an email interview with Lev Grossman—one of the two critics who selected the books on the list—so that was cool.
But, for the most part, Time hasn’t paid much attention to 101 Books. And why should they?
When I got started, I was just any other dude in America who clicked a button, created a blog, and started rambling off into the great internet abyss. There’s no telling how many people and PR hacks harass Time Magazine every day. They ain’t got time for that.
My hope is, though, with the longevity of this blog (getting close to three years now), and the closer I get to completing the project, that Time might take notice. I don’t know what that means. I don’t know what that looks like.
But I think it would be cool. So if you want to send them a note/email/tweet to tell them about this project, I won’t stop you!
I’ll be fine either way. I’ve said all along that I’d still be writing 101 Books even if only 10 people read it every day. But I’d also be lying if I said that some exposure isn’t exciting.
And that’s not just about me. It’s about promoting the idea that everyone has the time to read—even those of us with families and full-time jobs.
I write this blog AND I read every day, on top of living a fairly busy life. Anyone can do this. I’ve written about that in detail for Michael Hyatt’s blog.
Reading fiction shouldn’t be something you do in junior high and high school, then forget about for the rest of your life. You do have time to read. You just have to make it a priority.
Slowly, that’s what 101 Books has evolved into. I see myself as a sort-of reading activist, if you will.
Yes, this is about reading the Time list. Yes, this is about sharing cool stories about authors and books and reading. But it’s also about showing that we all have time to read. Those of us who say we don’t have time just haven’t made reading a priority.
So, maybe Time Magazine will eventually hop on board this journey with me. If not, I’ll be fine to keep on chugging along.
You guys are great company, and we still have a long way to go!
Note: I won’t be posting on Monday due to Memorial Day in the U.S. Have a great weekend!