Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Reading Challenges and More Shoulder Woes

It's official. I've completely lost my mind. Not only am I signing up for another challenge.....I'm signing up for 3!! Nuts, I tell you. My name is Stephanie and I'm a Challenge Addict! I seem to be struggling to keep up with the challenges I've already committed to. Man. I need my head examined. But they just seemed to fun to pass up! So....in no particular order, here they are:

The 1% Well-Read Challenge is hosted by the lovely Michelle from 1 More Chapter. I LOVE the concept of this one. "The goal of this challenge is to read 10 books in 10 months from the 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die list. For you non-math people, 10 out of 1001 is approximately 1%, hence the title. The challenge will run from May 1, 2008 through February 28, 2009." Go Here to sign up! I actually thought I WAS fairly well-read until I read this list. Apparently, I'm not!! Out of 1001, I have only read 38. Wow. That is not a big number at all!! Most of the ones I've read are Classics too. So....trying to get a big variety, I opted for books in all the centuries (except the pre-1700's!) And, as always, I reserve the right to change this list!

  • The Devil and Miss Prym by Paulo Coehlo
  • Atonement by Ian McEwan
  • Choke by Chuck Pahlanuik
  • The Robber Bride by Margaret Atwood
  • Less Than Zero by Brett Easton Ellis
  • The Unconsoled by Kazuo Ishiguro
  • Dr. Zhivago by Boris Pasternak
  • Far From the Maddening Crowd by Thomas Hardy
  • North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell
  • The Monk by M. G. Lewis

  • That's 10. I could have listed, like, 100 more!! But we'll take some baby steps here.

    Maggie, from Maggie Reads, is once again hosting the Southern Reading Challenge. I participated last year, but didn't finish. I'd love to actually complete my list this year!!

    The rules are easy. 3 Southern Setting Books by 3 Southern authors in 3 Months (May 15 - August 15). Sound like fun?? But, of course!!

    You would think that only picking 3 books would be easy. But it's not. Southern Literature encompasses a lot of books, and it was horrible trying to narrow down the list.

    The Little Friend by Donna Tart

    Garden Spells by Sarah Addison Allen

    Dead Sleep by Greg Iles

    • And finally, The Chick Lit Challenge. I don't read much "Chick Lit" any more. I used to bury myself in it. Truthfully, I usually like my books with a little more meat in them. Most Chick Lit is light and fluffy. But I have shelves of it taking up space in my house. And it really is a great way to relax. With the summer months coming up, I can always use a light read, so I thought I would join. Hosted by Journey to the End of my TBR (love the name!) it's only 3 books. Figured this challenge would motivate me to purge some things from my books shelves!! Here are my selections:

      The Pact by Jennifer Sturman
    • Tall Poppies by Louise Bagshawe
    • The Givenchy Code by Julie Kenner

    OK....enough with the challenges! In other random thoughts, I went to my Dr's appointment yesterday. He gave me the results of my MRI. I have a "frayed" rotator cuff. Not as bad as a complete hole in the cuff, but still kind of nasty. The worst part of it is that I have tons of fluid in the bursa, and a bit of arthritis near the collar bone. His recommendation is surgery. Ack. I did NOT want to hear that. He said I could try the steroid injections, but with an injury this bad, the chances of it working are only about 30%. I don't really like those odds. But the recovery time for surgery is about 3 months. At least 6 weeks off work. Right now, I can't really afford to be off that long. And we are so short-staffed, it would kill them to have me gone for that long. So.....I think I might see if the injections will give me a bit of relief, and worry about the surgery after summer is over. But that's how I feel today....who knows tomorrow!! I have decided I really am too young to be feeling this much pain all the time. Decisions, decisions. What's a girl to do??


    maggie moran said...

    Ya done good Stephanie, and I hope you get some pecans for the effort! :D

    Anonymous said...

    Glad to see you joining the 1% Well-Read Challenge, but sorry to hear about your results. Keep us posted!

    Stephanie said...

    Maggie - Thanks!! Although I consider myself a total Yank, I used to spend summers at my great-Grandmother's house in Kentucky (South of Bowling Green, right on the Border). I STILL won't eat grits, but pecans are yummy!!

    Michelle - Thanks!! And you have challenges that I just can't seem to pass up!! Hopefully, the shoulder will get better.

    Trish @ Love, Laughter, Insanity said...

    I don't think I'm going to be able to resist the first two. I was counting my challenges yesterday--including the one that I'm hosting starting in July and it totaled to 11! Ahhh! Thank goodness for cross-posting, right? Great lists! I just finished The Robber Bride and enjoyed it. That Atwood is a great writer!

    Stephanie said...

    Trish - I saw that you were hosting a Classics Challenge. Man...you just know I'm going to have to join!! I love reading Classics!!

    Melody said...

    Great list, Stephanie! I'm trying to be "good" and not participate in more challenges, but who knows when if I'll change my mind next?! ;P

    That's a tough decision you've to made. I'd be caught in between if I were you too. I hope the injections works and that you don't have to go to the surgery!

    Stephanie said...

    Oh come on Melody!! You know you want to!! I'm hoping the injections work too. I hate shots with a passion...but I think it's a better alternative. Then again, with only a 30% chance of actually working, it might be an unnecessary course to go with.

    Debi said...

    Oh shit, Stephanie...I was really hoping you were going to get better news on the shoulder! I'll be keeping my fingers and my toes crossed that the injections do the trick, so you can avoid surgery!

    Aside from your bad news, this post made my grin from ear to ear...you joined 3 new ones and I only joined 2. See, my addiction isn't so bad, right?

    Kim L said...

    Wow that's a lot of challenges!

    Hope you get the shoulder situation figured out. That really sucks!

    Laura said...

    I just joined 3 challenges as well, and I'm considering the chick lit challenge. It's just so much fun! I just hope I can keep up! I'm sorry to hear about your shoulder. I hope the injections ease the pain.

    Iliana said...

    Ah man, I wish you'd had better news at the doctor but here's hoping those injections work!
    All of these challenges are so freakin' tempting! If I didn't have a crazy month ahead of me I'd jump right in but I'm refraining... Well, that's my thought tonight. Who knows I may cave in tomorrow - ha,ha...

    Amy said...

    Sorry to hear about your results but I hope that you find relief from the shots if that is what you decide.

    I am planning on reading Dead Sleep too. I got a copy from a bookstore that was going out of business. I will be anxious for your review.

    Stephanie said...

    debi - Uh...no. Your addiction is just as bad as mine. Sorry. That's that. No denial here!!

    Yeah. Thanks about the shoulder. It sucks getting old. I honestly see surgery in the future. I just can't do it now.

    Carl V. Anderson said...

    I am so sorry to hear that, I really am. I hope the temporary solution provides you much relief and that things open up for you to have the surgery quickly so that you can recover quickly.

    Ana S. said...

    I'm so sorry to hear about your shoulder, Stephanie. I hope the treatment helps even though the odds are not that good.

    As for the challenges, you're not the only one to have lost your mind :P

    Ladytink_534 said...

    Another really good southern author is Mary Kay Andrews. Hope you feel better soon!

    heather (errantdreams) said...

    Oh no... I'm so sorry to hear about your shoulder. I hope they find a way to make it better!

    The Bookworm said...

    hi, theres always so many challenges and not enough time :)


    Tammy said...

    Sorry to hear about your shoulder, Steph. I know that wasn't the news you were hoping for.

    I counted up my list of challenge books today and I have 41 to finish by the end of the year. So far this year I've only read 17, so I'm obviously going to have to amp up the reading. But will this stop me from joining another -- ummm, let's see, nope. The 1% challenge sounds too good to pass up! But if I get fired for reading on the job, I'm blaming you, lol:)

    Anonymous said...

    I'm sorry about the shoulder news. Be sure and do what's best for you no matter what. 6 weeks off work is tough (especially with a family), but you don't want to risk it being even more.

    Anonymous said...


    I'm a big fan of Paulo Coelho! You will love this! He's the first best-selling
    author to be distributing for free his works on his blog:

    Have a nice day!


    tanabata said...

    Sorry to hear about your shoulder. I hope the injections help a bit for the time being at least.
    As for challenges, I'm thinking of joining a couple more too! Craziness!

    Susan said...

    I'm sorry too, to hear about your shoulder. My sister-in-law is a nurse and she hurt her rotator cuff also, when trying to move someone heavy out of a bath during a shift. It took her 4 or 5 weeks to recover - she didn't need surgery - but her shoulder still bothers her. I hope yours is able to heal enough to get through the summer, but it sounds an awful injury to have. Hope you had a happy mother's day and your children are spoiling you today! and as for the challenges....I'm really trying to resist the southern challenge, but I joined the 1% challenge, that was irresistible!