My name is Emily, and I thought this would be a fun project to do because I read a lot and then I always want to talk about the book I read to other people. I am hoping that this project will encourage me to broaden my horizons when it comes to reading. Also, I hope this will make me a more critical reader, and help me develop a keener sense for good writing, both in fiction and non-fiction. Also, as Emma said, it never hurts to practice writing myself!
I am also 24, and I am a graduate student in geophysics at Boise State University. I am planning to graduate in December of 2010, though we will see if that happens! I study ice and permafrost hydrology using ground-penetrating radar. My field site is in northern Alaska, well into the Arctic circle.
Like Emma, I also try to read a mix of fiction and non-fiction. It's usually a bit lopsided, simply because fiction reading goes faster for me. In terms of fiction, I strongly lean towards the speculative fiction genres. I typically prefer high fantasy to low fantasy, though this is not a strong preference. I enjoy science fiction that follows the same traditions as classical sci-fi... so, things that follow the models set by Asimov, Herbert, etc. I also enjoy steampunk quite a bit. On occasion, I will also read historical fiction, mysteries and contemporary fiction. For my non-fiction reading, I do a lot of reading in the natural sciences. I like reading about the geosciences, environmental studies, and sometimes physics. I also like reading about agriculture and food production.
Some of my favorite fiction authors are JRR Tolkien, Orson Scott Card, Neil Gaiman, Brandon Sanderson, Philip Pullman, Neal Stephenson, Tad Williams, and Marie Brennan. Some of my favorite non-fiction authors are Michael Pollan, Terry Tempest Williams, Edward Abbey, and Bill Bryson.