I sit here tonight, thinking about dipping my toes into the 2012 challenge waters. I’m just finishing up my greatest year of reading ever; do I want to chance losing that momentum because of challenges I might not complete? Do I want to risk being upset with myself about something reading related? Then a thought crossed my mind:
“BRIAN WYZLIC, ARE YOU TELLING ME YOU’RE AFRAID OF FAILING?!”
Oh, voice in my head. Such a kind guide you are. But you’re right. After constant urging of my students to “keep moving forward” if they fail, and to learn from their mistakes and move on. . .if I backed off from a challenge I had in my head just because I was afraid I might not succeed, how could I face my students when we return in January? Not with an honest conscience, that’s for sure.
My plan: read all the Michael L. Printz winners. Fortunately, there are only 12 (soon to be 13). I can do that. I have read 2 of them already: Monster (2000) and Looking for Alaska (2006). Will I read them again? Yes! Those books are amazing. I consider it a gift to be able to read them again.
“But Brian, what about the honor books? Shouldn’t you read those, too?”
You know, voice in my head, you can be pretty annoying sometimes, you know that? I would love to read the honor books. So sure, they’re in there, too. I’ve read some of them already, but there are a lot I haven’t read. I will be reading the award winners first, though.
“But Brian, what about all the other books you want to read next year? How are you going to have time for them?”
LISTEN, VOICE. Stop bringing up good points! I’m trying to feel competent here, you know? There are people who are going to read this, and I wouldn’t mind it if they were more on the side of “YEAH, let’s do this!” and not “whoa, that’s. . .kind of a lot. . .” But here’s the deal: I am going to try to read them, too. The summer is going to be a big help for this. More than anything, though, my love for reading is going to win out. ARE YOU HAPPY NOW, VOICE? ARE YOU?!
. . .
That’s what I thought.
So, here we go. I’m all in. I might not make it. That’s okay. It might take me 2 years. Or 3. That’s okay. I’m in: I’m going to read all the Printz winners and honor books in 2012. Will you join me?