Thursday, February 25, 2010

Things I've Noticed: My magazines are starting to stack up

Like lots of people, I collect a magazine or two a month, some with a high degree of regularity and others if the cover seems interesting or there is an article I'd like to check out. Usually I save my magazines for the end of the month - after I've read whatever novels I had planned and before the next month begins. At six novels a month this gives me somewhere between a week or two to catch up on my magazines.

Over the last year however I've started to fall behind - as a full time husband, dad, library technician and part time university student and blogger, my unread magazines currently go back to November '08. Since October of last year I've been a little more aware of my piles of unread magazines due to the fact I watch the show Hoarders on A&E with my wife.

So here is a quick break down of the magazines of Bookmonkey, and my (hopeful) plan to get caught up with them by July.

I started collecting Men's Health back in the summer of '08 - at the time I checked out both it and Men's Fitness, but this title seemed to be a little more focused on lots of aspects of men's health overall, and not just how to get more ripped - I'm in my early thirties - ripped is a younger man's game, my goal is to be in good enough shape to do the things I like to do now for the rest of my life.

This Canadian magazine focuses on the outdoors; backpacking, camping, canoeing, hiking, etc. I bought my first one due to the cover article - 100 things you must do before you die, (I'm at about 18 right now) I liked the fact that the majority of the list was things you could do in Canada, as well as things a regular fellow could do. Following the list I've howled with wolves, gone caving and read more by Farley Mowat - all very fun stuff.

Part of what I love about Realms of Fantasy is the short stories - they can be clever, frightening, and wondrous, and right now the idea of getting a story into this magazine is a really fun dream of mine (in the past I've sent off a couple stories to my local genre fiction magazine - hoping to work up to this one). Also I love the reviews and updates regarding Fantasy Books, Movies, TV and Video Games.

As my local magazine stores don't stock this title, I only pick it up when I'm in my cities magazine store, which works out to once or twice a year. The stories in this horror magazine are really good, and I'm a huge fan of the book reviews. Although I'm big into horror, it's not so much the gore side, so Fangoria just doesn't do it for me. Cemetary Dance, on the other hand, has lead me to some great new favourite authors.

5. Various / Comics
The Final group of magazines I have are singe issues of something where the cover caught my eyes (a couple issues of Vanity Fair) or comics (both in single issue or trade paperbacks). Due to the speed with which I can read a comic, they tend to wait until I'm done my monthly reading before I start with them - up next, I'm reading my BFF Mike's collection of She-Hulk comics.

So, in the end how do I get through these? Especially without taking time away from my other priorities? I think I'll work on the "article a day" theory, I'll take my oldest magazine, and check out an article every day - this works out to about 10 pages - for some magazines, Men's Health, for example, I'll just stick to ten pages a day, as their articles are one or two pagers mostly. Taking a quick stock, I've currently got about 30 magazines waiting to be read, with at the very least a new Explore being added every month (my wife got me a subscription). After they are done, I keep personal favourites, but donate the others to local non-profit agencies, so other people can enjoy them and my house doesn't start to look like a crazy persons.

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