Thursday, April 1, 2010

So Happy We Have So Many Participants in the Challenge!

I've been collecting links to write about for the April Literacy Challenge. I think it'll have to be websites and articles because I am having a problem with novel-reading, despite the fact that I love novels and that I'm currently reading a novel I've been anticipating for years: The Lacuna by Barbara Kingsolver.

The problem is that I fall asleep within paragraphs of reading this book. That's because I exist in a state of chronic sleep deprivation, which I have chronicled at length on this blog. As you may know, I haven't regularly slept through the night in six years and three months.

I generally try not to read articles about the dangers of sleep deprivation because they usually make me feel bad about a situation I can't fix, though I've TRIED AND TRIED.

But, about a year ago, I did read an article about sleep deprivation and memory. The article said that the reason people who are sleep deprived tend to be depressed is that a sleep-deprived brain has trouble creating happy memories. It turns out negative memories are easier to make. Isn't that weird? I can't find a link to that article right now, but I thought of it when I read Janet Malcolm's blog for the NY Review of Books. She wrote this lovely description of the role of memory in autobiography (and I think blogging, too):

Memory is not a journalist’s tool. Memory glimmers and hints, but shows nothing sharply or clearly. Memory does not narrate or render character. Memory has no regard for the reader. If an autobiography is to be even minimally readable, the autobiographer must step in and subdue what you could call memory’s autism, its passion for the tedious. He must not be afraid to invent. Above all he must invent himself.

One good thing about this blog, even though I do invent things from time to time (I admitted this many years ago when James Frey was outed) the memories I record here are mostly happy ones.

1 comment:

LH said...

We have begun. I like that bit of inserted text.

woohoo for us.

i love how you have the list of participants.