Thursday, August 19, 2010

Literary ADD

Hi.  My name is Melody, and I have Literary ADD.

I've been diagnosed by a bookish friend (and since I have but few, her opinion is weighty.)

I know I'm not the only one.  In fact, I would venture a guess that many of you out there have at least a touch of it as well (at least I'm going to do my best to make it seem that way!)

How do you define Literary ADD? you may ask.  Well let's see.  I found a website that defines ADD like this:
Attention Deficit Disorder is a biologically based condition causing a persistent pattern of difficulties resulting in one or more of the the following behaviors:

So then, Literary ADD would be those things...but with books.  Right?

How does this translate to my reading habits and enjoyment of books?  First, inattention.  Why focus solely on blogging when I could be breaking it up by checking my email every other minute?  Sitting down to write (or blog) or even, sometimes, read...when there are so many things to be done occasionally takes super-human strength for me.  I get a fair amount of reading done as it is, but I'm sure it could be more if I'd simply stop checking Google Reader to see if anyone out there has a new blog post.

What about hyperactivity?  How does that possibly fit in?  Consider this: how many books do you read at a time?  Why read one book at a time when it would make much more sense to have something going for each mood: nonfiction, classic, book club, junior fiction, ARC, etc.  How many books are on your [virtual] TBR list?  Why confine a TBR list to 20 books when it could easily have over 200?

I don't think I even need to explain impulsivity.  I can't let myself walk into a bookstore unless I'm prepared for the inevitable impulse purchase.  I keep stacks of books around me, waiting for an impulse to hit me--demanding immediate reading.  My book selection process (deciding what to read next) is largely dependent on impulse.  I don't know if I'm capable of reading a list of books in order...the impulse is half the fun!

It's true, sometimes these issues cramp my style.  Sometimes I'd love to be able to just pick up the next book in line, and sit down for hours, completely absorbed in the book.  Sometimes I get frustrated at my apparent inability to stop following those impulses.  But then I'll finish a book and have that delicious feeling bubble up inside me.  I think, "Oooh, what should I read next?" and all dissatisfaction melts away.


  1. I am pretty guilty of inattention and lacking focus. I can easily sit at the computer and try to do a million things at once - blog, read posts, write posts, check emails, check the newspaper etc etc

  2. Haha, it is a delicious feeling, nice wording. I think I have literary ADD as well. I compulsively check reader and blogger and go through books and wonder what to read next and then get something out at the library and then not read it till it's overdue. And I agree, the impulse is totally half the fun :D

  3. I love this post and I think I have a literary ADD as when i reflect on it I know I have all the symptoms. I have compulsively check blogger, book blogs etc and whenever I am not doing that I can be found with a book in my hand. Also I totally agree as well that the impulse is most of the fun :)

  4. I stopped by from the Hop -- and then starting reading this post. And was smiling to myself, and nodding my head. :)

    Nice blog -- I'm looking forward to reading future posts!

  5. I actually have ADD, but oddly enough, it doesn't affect my reading as much as it affects other things. Blogging, though - that's a whole different story!

  6. Becky--I'm really bad when it comes to computer tasks. It can suck hours out of my day before I know it if I'm not careful!

    toni--sometimes I wonder if I spend more time finding good books than I do reading them...

    The Book Bee--I know, sometimes just reading a book isn't quite enough, I need to talk about them and read about them too!

    Jo--so nice to meet you, thanks for coming by and leaving me a comment. I'll head over and visit you too.

    Carina--that's interesting that your reading is unaffected by ADD. It seems like it would be more likely to be affected. Funny!


I'd love to hear what you have to say, leave a comment!