Justin Hall's personal site growing & breaking down since 1994

watch overshare: the story contact me

Reading so many books? No news!

I showed my sister my recent list of mystery novels I'd read and she asked how I managed to read about 14 books in three weeks while being on a full-time sightseeing vacation.

¡¡¡¡Easy Answer!!!!

I eliminated news and periodicals from my media diet. I didn't read or listen to the Economist cover to cover, as I usually do. I didn't load the New York Times app several times a day to see what the news was.

In fact, I took my "Newsstand" app on my iPhone, and I moved it off the front screen. Instead I put my Kindle e-reader app there, alongside a painting app, an i Ching app, social networks, photo albums and a camera app. So when I opened my phone, by default, my choices were "read a book, draw a picture, consult the sages, check in on friends, take a photo or look at photos."

I didn't know the details of the plane crash in San Francisco, nor did I keep up with the clash between the Egyptian army and the Muslim Brotherhood! These are stories I would have been fascinated by when I was on my regular news diet.

Instead I read mystery novels at every spare moment. It was engrossing fun, and now that I'm back from my trip, I've slowed down on mystery novels a wee bit, but I haven't gone back to reading the news. Somehow maybe when I was working a daily job, keeping up on the sagas of leaders and the newest pending collapse of our society was appealing. I enjoyed being highly literate about the state of cross-oceanic trade pacts or the latest twist in the Euro saga. Will Italians actually allow Berlusconi to somehow have formal political office again??

There are some hilarious, engrossing aspects to the news. But novels are great too! Which is a better use of my time? Never-ending twists and turns of conemporary human endeavor, or procedural crime dramas?? Maybe in a few weeks I'll choose another focus for my media consumption - it's nice to be specific about where I put my media attention.


Thanks Steve Rhodes - from @tigerbeat on Instagram
June 2012 dancing in the streets of San Francisco with Ilyse Magy, photo thanks Steve Rhodes on instagram!

Hi, I'm Justin Hall and this here is a personal web site I've used to chronicle my time on earth since 1994. The content on the front page is relatively recent; if you search through the archives, you'll find old pieces of Justin. Some folks have indexed my doings on Wikipedia.

Twitter: jah
Facebook: Justinreach

eBooks by Justin Hall

I've published books for sale, somewhere else online! Behold:

Now available for the Kindle: A Story of GameLayers. My experience being CEO of a tech company, 2007-2009:

"A tell-all story of a startup from the very beginning, with lots of info about real-world fundraising. A more intimate look than you'll find in other business reads." says Irene Polnyi in a 5-star review on

A Story of GameLayers, for the Amazon Kindle.