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Poll: How many books do you read per month?
Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff
ProZ.com Staff
Local time: 07:36
SITE STAFF
Nov 17, 2006

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "How many books do you read per month?".

This poll was originally submitted by Siti Nur Aryani

View the poll here

A forum topic will appear each time a new poll is run. For more information, see: http://proz.com/topic/33629


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Sonia Hill
United Kingdom
Local time: 15:36
Member (2010)
Italian to English
Bookworm Nov 17, 2006

I take it we're talking about reading for pleasure here!
I'm a real bookworm and probably actually read at least 7-8 a month. I should mention here that I collect children's first editions i.e. Enid Blyton, Malcolm Saville, Lorna Hill, etc., and intersperse my "weightier" reading with these. They are great for relaxing and only take a few hours to read.
I always read before going to sleep and definitely prefer reading to watching TV.
This month I'm reading the new translation of War and Peace, after reading about it on ProZ, so that is going to bring my average down a bit:-)


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Anne Patteet  Identity Verified
Local time: 09:36
English to French
+ ...
I used to read a lot more... (I answered 1-2) Nov 18, 2006

...when I didn't have any children!
I would read 7-10 books per month then, but that's all over now... I still read a lot though, but it is much more about practical subjects (translation for insance ), or short texts.
I would love to be able to read long books again, but it seems that all my concentration goes into whatever is related to the children's education and translation, so at night I only read small articles (I used to read all night, now I just fall asleep VERY soon ).
I guess I'll have to wait that the children grow up a little more so I won't be so exhausted every night .


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Niraja Nanjundan  Identity Verified
Local time: 20:06
German to English
1-2 Nov 18, 2006

I recently read "The Mantram Handbook" by Eknath Eswaran, which is about how reciting mantras can help you in your daily life and am currently reading "Dance,Dance,Dance" by Japanese author Haruki Murakami, whose books I would highly recommend.

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JaneTranslates  Identity Verified
Puerto Rico
Local time: 10:36
Member (2005)
Spanish to English
+ ...
What about 9+? Nov 18, 2006

I'm always reading--right now I have 5 books in progress, for different parts of my life. One's on my bedside table, one in the house where I stay one night per week, one in my briefcase for reading on the commuter train, one is on my desk, and one is (of course!) in the bathroom. Three of the five are fiction.

I can't even begin to keep up with what I want to read. I'm only now reading (on the train) Freakonomics, which I bought about a year ago.

I read lots of history, and historical novels. Hardly ever read anything about translation or language, though. Hmmm.

Jane

[Edited at 2006-11-18 03:16]


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Portalkata
Indonesia
Local time: 21:36
English to Indonesian
+ ...
Mobility and book (or e-book) Nov 18, 2006

I realize it is hard for me to life without reading books. Reading books is different with reading any other texts, right? I proof my self that high mobility doesn't have to left our life empty of book at all, unless reading is not our hobby.
I think I should learn from Jane to spend more time for reading in any mobile conditions


Siti Nur Aryani

[Edited at 2006-11-18 07:08]


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Patricia Lane  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 16:36
French to English
+ ...
"Book eater" Nov 18, 2006

That what my husband calls me - not a reader, a devourer of books and printed materials! It has always been my passion, my escape, and I way prefer it to TV or videos. Can't go to sleep without spending at least an hour engrossed in somthing! Tend to read fiction (but not sci fi) and in both languages (FR and EN) in about equal amounts. I am lucky, there is a super public library right near me that has a good English section too and gets recent releases regularly. I just finished Joyce Carol Oats 'The Fall'. I also read a lot of periodicals, mostly on international affairs and business, and those are the only ones I can read concurrently. Contrary to Jane, I can't have several books going at the same time, I get too involved in them.

How about if we started a "best reads' list with a short description of the subject of the book?

Cheers,

Patricia


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Martina Höppner  Identity Verified
Local time: 02:36
English to German
+ ...
Still 7–8 per month but used to be more Nov 18, 2006

I was really surprised that so many translators read only 1–2 books a months! I thought most of us love reading… but I guess you don't have to if you are for instance a technical translator.
I agree it got a lot harder since I have a child because I do a lot of my translation work in the evening. But I still have to read – I couldn't do without. Since I do a lot of late night reading it's mainly fiction and especially crime novels (English if possible, otherwise German) which relaxes me a lot more than watching TV.

Best reads is something I can't answer. It changes so often and everybody likes different topics, styles, etc.
Recently I devoured "Nachtzug nach Lissabon" (don't know if there's an English version) – a great read!


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Andrea Quintana  Identity Verified
Argentina
Local time: 11:36
Member (2006)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Amazing! Nov 18, 2006

As I read your post, it was as if I was reading my own story, Sonia.

I also read children's books, since I've got a 3- and an 8-year olds. I go to their school's book fairs and come back home with as much as I can, both in English and Spanish.
Reading is my 'vice'. I also read before going to sleep every night, but the amazing part is I'm currently re-reading 'War and Peace', too -although it's the Spanish translation!
I guess that most of us translators are 'book eaters', as Patricia says.

Cheers!

Andrea


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Balasubramaniam L.  Identity Verified
India
Local time: 20:06
Member (2006)
English to Hindi
+ ...
7-8 in my case too Nov 19, 2006

I am a life member of the Gujarat Vidyapith Library established by Mahatma Gandhi, which allows you to take 4 books per fortnight. I never miss my fortnightly visits to this library.

I am also a member of the British Library and visit it quite regularly, though not as frequently as the above ibrary, mainly because this library stocks only English books, while I read in Hindi, Gujarati, Tamil, Malayalam and English.

I also have my own personal library of over 500 books, many of which I read on and off.

I am an avid fan of children's books too and vie with my daughters for reading them first. I have the full set of Harry Potter books, both in English and Hindi (the ones that have been translated so far), Tolken's trilogy, all the Sherlock Holmes books, scores of Enid Blyton books (all the sixteen in the Fatty series), etc. I pick them up when I need relaxing.

I still find book-buying costly and do not buy as many books as I would like to. Also finding a space for them in my home is a problem. My cupboards are already full and the books are fast taking over all the available space in the house. Since mine is a family of book-readers, no one complains, thankfully.

I have discovered several ebook sites and have downloaded quite a few ebooks. But I find reading books on the computer screen stressful. I have still not been able to buy a good ebook gadget which I believe are available and are hand held and can be manipulated like paper books. But I think the software for these gadgets is available only in English, which limits their attraction for me.


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Riccardo Schiaffino  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 08:36
Member (2003)
English to Italian
+ ...
5 to 10 books each month Nov 19, 2006

Down to 10-15 a month when I was not working full time.

Big advantage: no TV in the house... when we want to watch some video we look at it on the computer.

Other big advantage: Denver and Arapahoe libraries, where we can borrow up to 100 books, 25 CDs and 7 DVDs at a time.

Big problem: not enough room in the house for all the books we have (several thousands). We are currently planning to expand the shelf space in two of the rooms, but we are also starting to consider moving to a bigger house.


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Sonia Hill
United Kingdom
Local time: 15:36
Member (2010)
Italian to English
What a coincidence Nov 19, 2006

Andrea Quintana wrote:

As I read your post, it was as if I was reading my own story, Sonia.

I also read children's books, since I've got a 3- and an 8-year olds. I go to their school's book fairs and come back home with as much as I can, both in English and Spanish.
Reading is my 'vice'. I also read before going to sleep every night, but the amazing part is I'm currently re-reading 'War and Peace', too -although it's the Spanish translation!
I guess that most of us translators are 'book eaters', as Patricia says.

Cheers!

Andrea


That's quite a coincidence
My sister and I were actually named after two of the characters in War and Peace - Sonya and Natasha (although my name is spelt differently).


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William [Bill] Gray  Identity Verified
Norway
Local time: 16:36
Member (2006)
English
+ ...
PDA e-books Nov 19, 2006

Balasubramaniam wrote:

I have discovered several ebook sites and have downloaded quite a few ebooks. But I find reading books on the computer screen stressful. I have still not been able to buy a good ebook gadget which I believe are available and are hand held and can be manipulated like paper books. But I think the software for these gadgets is available only in English, which limits their attraction for me.


Interesting point! Many people find it difficult to read books on a computer screen, because our eyes scan text differently when on paper or on screen. (Aside: therefore we who are translators ALWAYS check our work from hard copies??!!).

I have become a fan of PDAs, and use a Palm Tungsten T3 (which allows for extension of the screen). I now try to do all of my reading on this Palm. Because of its size, and the hard protective cover I use which opens like the cover of a book, I can happily sit and read for hours! (And the books are a lot cheaper!) I am also involved in Christian preaching and teaching work, and have various versions of the Bible on my Palm, which I use when speaking. The only negative aspect is that with only 20-30 lines of text on screen, scanning backwards or forwards to recall or refer to something, is very limited, when compared to how much text is visible on a double page spread in a paper book.

Any others with experiences with PDA reading preferences?



[Edited at 2006-11-19 10:37]


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Clare Barnes  Identity Verified
Sweden
Local time: 16:36
Swedish to English
+ ...
A book for each room... Nov 19, 2006

My book reading follows the same lines as Jane's - a book in each room plus one in my bag. The nearest town is 90 minutes away on the bus, which gives me plenty of reading time! (We don't have a TV at the moment, which gives the whole family more reading time).

I'm currently eating my way through Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles, but I'll read anything I can get my hands on really, with the possible exception of Terry Pratchet... (sorry...!). A recommended read is "James Miranda Barry" by Patricia Dunker - a fantastic book, but make sure you don't have anything else to do for two days or so once you start reading it...


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Andrea Riffo  Identity Verified
Chile
Local time: 10:36
English to Spanish
1-2 per month... Nov 19, 2006

... but it used to be around 7-8 back when I was a student.

Martina Höppner wrote:

I was really surprised that so many translators read only 1–2 books a months! I thought most of us love reading…


I do love to read, but I have little time compared to 3-4 years ago. Add that to the fact that I have (mild, but still) ADD and it becomes extremely hard for me to find the time to read nowadays, because if I have something remotely important to do, I find it impossible to focus.

That's not to say I didn't have stuff to do back when I was a student, but, let's just say they weren't as important to me as my current work is. Back then, if I failed to deliver good quality work, I only got a mediocre grade... nowadays, if I fail to deliver top-notch work, I lose a client. My standars -and the time required to meet my own expectations- have changed significantly.

... but I guess you don't have to if you are for instance a technical translator.


I have to say I disagree with you here, Martina. I do mostly medical translation (from general health, to clinical trials, to SOPs) and accuracy is of the utmost importance. I know that "medical" isn't the same as "technical", but my guess is that anyone who translates instruction manuals for electrical appliances must be extremely careful with the wording and general writing.

Riccardo wrote:

Big problem: not enough room in the house for all the books we have (several thousands).


I have the same problem. I had to get rid of the extra bed in order to fit all of my books.

I have never been able to read 2 books simultaneously like Jane and Clare do, because I get everything mixed up. And, due to the aforementioned ADD problem, I have also never been able to read while commuting... that's a lot of wasted reading-time

Still, that led me to discover the joys of re-reading... whenever I'm swamped with work and therefore unable to focus on a new book, I grab an old favourite to savour it again. Currently, said "old favourite" is Milan Kundera's Immortality (in Spanish).

Greetings!


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