I have a confession to make: I haven’t read a book in years.

Well, let me clarify that, I have read countless textbooks, magazines, technical manuals and computer screens. Maybe that’s why. I used to be a constant reader. I can remember spending summers on vacation from school carrying mounds of books to and from the library. I knew what the limit was for how many books I could check out at once and usually was at it.

I still read the paper cover to cover every day at work. I’m not so sure I would if I were home. Much of it isn’t worth reading and only upsets me. But it should count for something.

I have a paperback collection that must be 150 books, mostly sci-fi, that I’ve accumulated. I don’t reread them, but I’m loathe to get rid of them either. Once in a while they come up in conversation (or come out as a movie) and I’ll dig one out to remember something or prove a point.

The last sci-fi book I was reading is still sitting in my toolbox at work. It must not have been such a good story; I got half-way through it and never finished. By now, I’d have to start over. As I recall, it started out really good, then got bogged down in the middle and I got bored with it. Maybe that’s the problem. I can’t go on to another until I finish that book.

But I think the real problem is the amount of time I spend reading something on a computer screen.

I did read an online book recently. It was Cory Doctorows’ Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom a short futuristic piece that takes place in Disney World. It was available to download as a PDF, so I got it to read on the laptop. I quickly learned how to set a bookmark in Acrobat Reader.

So, I guess it’s not that I don’t read anymore, it’s that how I read has changed.