Last night I was looking at the books I currently have on my nightstand and I had to smile at how every one of them represents one pocket of my life.
Now to be clear, I’m not simultaneously reading all of these books. Some I delve into for occasional insights, like when I need writing inspiration (Bird by Bird) or another perspective on how to parent my children (Hold onto your Kids.) Others I’m attempting to read from front to back within a reasonable amount of time (usually 3 weeks, given that I read in bed at night and tend to fall asleep with said book in hand, having only read 2 pages!)
But I’m smiling and shaking my head at the same time because in typical Claire fashion I’m trying to grow at a rapid rate in very area of my life and I appear to be going for all areas at once.
Here’s why I’m reading these particular books:
1) Tribes by Seth Godin (because I desire to build a strong writing community)
Tribes is about changing the world through leadership and building a community around something you are passionate about. As anyone who reads my blog regularly will know, I am passionate about building community around writing and helping others to achieve their writing dreams. This book is reinforcing my belief that leading such a community is not about micro-managing but rather inspiring, motivating and providing an engaging space for people to connect.
“The secret of leadership is simple: Do what you believe in. Paint a picture of the future. Go there. People will follow.”
2) The Dovekeepers by Alice Hoffman (because I love stories)
Okay, so I only just started reading this book but so far I find it to be an eloquent and fascinating read. Set in 70 c.e. (a.d), the book follows four Jewish women whose lives intersect during the Roman siege known as the Masada massacre. Within the story’s main framework lies the four fascinating subplots of each of the women and the events that leads their paths to collide in Masada, where they have come seeking refuge.
“I wept to think that life went on even when so much had been lost, that rain still fell and myrtle grew between the rocks.”
3) Girls with Swords by Lisa Bevere (because I desire to step into the space God created me to occupy)
Worldwide, women are the targets of prejudice, sex trafficking, abuse, and even gendercide. Lisa Bevere writes that these attacks say more about who women might be in the future than who they have been in the past.
In Girls with Swords Lisa explains that a spiritual enemy is seeking to disarm women on every level. It’s time women become the heroes God created them to be and stand—courageous, discerning, forgiving, and wise.
“If there ever was a time for women to be armed, it’s now.”
4) The Gifts of Imperfection by Brene Brown (because I need to be reminded that I am enough)
The subtitle of this book is this: “Let go of who you think you’re supposed to be and embrace who you are.“
Phew. Don’t we all need that? Someone to tell us we don’t have to be perfect and that there are opportunities for growth in being the imperfect people we already are?
This book is beautiful in its truth and simplicity and is based on years of research by author Brene Brown about the criticism that comes from within us and from the world around us.
“The dark does not destroy the light; it defines it. It’s our fear of the dark that casts our joy into the shadows.”
5) Hold on to your Kids by Gordon Neufeld & Gabor Mate (because I want my voice to be stronger than that of the boy who takes my daughter out on his motorbike when she’s
There’s a growing trend towards young people looking to their peers for direction, values and identity more than they look to their parents. That’s not okay with me, so I’m reading this book.
“We liberate children not by making them work for our love but by letting them rest in it. We help a child face the separation involved in going to sleep or going to school by satisfying his need for closeness.”
6) Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott (because I love to write)
This is just a great little book I think all writers should have on their nightstand. Packed with wisdom, humour and inspiration, Lamott’s book is a kick your butt road map to getting words on the page via life lessons and writing lessons.
“Don’t look at your feet to see if you are doing it right. Just dance.”
That’s it, friends. But tell me—which books are on your nightstand?Read More...