Student Snippets A Window Into The Daily Life & Thoughts of SLIS Students

Comprehensive Reading List and Learning to Love Old Genres

Are you an avid reader and stuck in a genre? I certainly was before I attended Simmons. I have my preferred genre’s and have difficulty convincing myself to read something different. Especially when it comes down to books I read for pleasure.  In the Children’s Literature program, you will be reading a lot of books.  I was so overwhelmed at the beginning of the semester, the few books I brought with me from Texas to read in my “spare” time sat on my little bookshelf collecting dust.  Each week I had anywhere from two-five books to read. While these books are young adult books, some of them falling into my preferred genre, there were some I was not too excited for.  It had been quite some time since I read anything outside of fantasy so when books like The Boxcar Children (a book I loved as a child), Little House in the Big Woods, or Happy Endings are All Alike showed up on our reading list, I was a bit apprehensive.  However, as each week has gone by this semester I have diligently read through each of these books and been pleasantly surprised.  I knew I enjoyed reading a wide range of books as a child but reading some of these genres an adult didn’t seem likely to inspire me.  Boy, I was wrong!  All of these books have been great in their own right. I am so happy to have read them, especially from an adult perspective. Children’s literature is rich with complexity.

 Of course, I knew by coming to Simmons I would not only be reading Fantasy books, I would probably bet burned out on the subject if so.  All I knew is that I had a deep interest in reading, authors, and writing and that Simmons was the school that would offer me the most thorough education on all things Children’s Literature.  I was up for the challenge even if I knew I had to push myself a bit.  I heard on the podcast 88 Cups of Tea, an interview with V.E. Schwab, and she said that she reads about 100 books a year. At that, she reads ALL different genres. The point of this is that you cannot grow as a writer and a reader if you do not expand your knowledge of what it is in the industry.  I thought this was great advice.  It has proven true with my first semester here at Simmons.  My To-Be-Read pile has significantly expanded and I have rekindled my appreciation of long-forgotten genres. 

 P.S. I have found the time to read books in my spare time! I was too adamant about spending every waking hour reading for class that I had convinced myself I did not have time for fun books.  I have reconsidered this because I was going mad, and I believe it is important to allow yourself at least 10 minutes of free reading time with a book of your own choosing.

 Until next time!