Monday, March 31, 2008

Travel Reading Strategy

One of the most important gear decisions I have to make when I'm on the road is what to read. That's especially true when it's a long trip and even more so when weight comes into play. On my trips to Africa to research Heart of Diamonds, I adopted a three-step approach to this important decision.

First was what to read on the flights from New York. My criteria were simple: it had to be paperback mass market fiction that I could enjoyably read off and on for 24 hours, then leave somewhere like an airport waiting room for someone else to enjoy when I was finished. A James Patterson thriller is almost always perfect.

For the return flight, I counted on buying something equally pleasurable somewhere along the way. With luck, I'd find an author published overseas that I wouldn't normally read at home. When I finished it, I donated it to my local library for their fund-raising book sale.

In-country was tougher. I typically read two or three books a week at home, but I sure didn't want to carry a half dozen tomes around the bush. The solution was Shakespeare. I bought a paperback edition of four tragedies, MacBeth, Hamlet, Lear, and Othello. It was a great choice because I could read and re-read them and find something new every time.

Besides, "A drum! A drum! MacBeth doth come!" provided excellent escape from a day filled with the wonders of Africa.

Dave Donelson, author of Heart of Diamonds a about in the

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