I realised a few days after Christmas, that I've had my Kindle for a year now - it was a Christmas present from Graham last year. I keep my ebooks organised into folders: To Read, Currently Reading and Finished. My Finished folder had 71 books in it on Boxing Day, so that is how many ebooks I read last year. On top of that there were quite a few paperbacks - and plenty of textbooks - which I read too.
It surprised me to find out how much I read. I think that was a pretty normal year for me - I've probably read close to a hundred books in total, or roughly two a week. Many of them were quick trashy reads, and many more were well-crafted, intelligent books. I'm quite eclectic in my tastes. A quick flick through my Finished folder reminds me that some of the highlights in 2012 were:
- Sound of a wild snail eating by Elizabeth Tova Bailey
- The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
- The Partridge and the Pelican by Rachel Crowther
- The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh
- Jackdaws by Ken Follett
- Ed King by David Guterson
- If Nobody Speaks of Remakable Things by Jon McGregor
- The Kashmir Shawl by Rosie Thomas
- Almost French by Sarah Turnbull
All four books are now begging for me to make things from them. My menu plan for the next couple of weeks is filling up nicely.
But the one book I've failed to make any headway with today, is my reflective journal. A notebook (a lovely Rob Ryan notebook no less) in which I am meant to be reflecting on a regular basis about my experiences on placement.
A great deal of the writing we do on our nursing course is reflective - exploring what happened, how we reacted or behaved, and what we would do differently next time. We have to write reflective essays, as well as writing reflective pieces in our portfolio of experience, and keeping a reflective journal.
I am finding it ridiculously difficult - ridiculous mainly because I love blogging, and it struck me quite early on that blogging is a form of reflective writing. I can see how reflective writing would be useful for my studies too - there is so much to take in, and so much that is emotional and challenging on the wards, that it would be good to get everything down on paper and make sense of it. I often end a shift feeling like I need a pensieve like Albus Dumbledore's, into which I could dump all my thoughts and experiences until I was ready to make sense of them.
So I'm not sure why I have not got the hang of reflection yet. I have this little textbook to help me, which is brilliant, and I shall keep trying. Just as soon as I've spent a little bit longer with Hugh, Nigel and the others.