Ah the bookworm. A creature that loves reading, can often be found in bed, is usually nocturnal, most commonly heard noise being the grumble of ‘just one more chapter’ as they prop tired eyes open and squint at tiny text in the dark. These common yet illusive creatures prefer solicitude and fiction to the hustle and bustle of life. Here is a list, for Top Ten Tuesday of 10 Things All Bookworms Do, let me know how many, out of ten you do in the comments section.
You can find last weeks Top Ten Tuesday, My Self Isolation Reading List here. Please share your links with me if you are taking part in the meme so I can check them out!
Seek Books Wherever you Are
1. Whether you’re out with your family, grandparents or best friends you will always gravitate towards the books. Maybe you’re in Tesco and meant to be buying a pint of milk, but somehow end up browsing the £2 paperback isle instead. You could be in a charity shop, flicking through dusty clothes. Yet before you leave you always visit that windowless part of the shop filled with crumpled paperbacks, spot the third in a series you loved as a kid and a handful of scruffy airport books with the 99p stamp peeling off in the corner. You never find anything, but you’ll always look. Maybe you’re hitting the high street with your friends, passing shop windows sporting manikins in slightly out of season clothes, the smell of coffee lingering from a cafe across the street. You spot a bookshop and you know regardless of who’s with you you’re going in.
Take Out Far too Many Books from the Library
2. You can’t stop yourself. You know you won’t be able to finish all those books before the due date but they’re there. Now. You never get that. You pluck a couple of staples of the shelves, steal those new releases from a display, greedy eyes looking over the returns trolley as you make your way back to the counter and proceed to place a few reservations. It’s only when you get home and remember that the library actually want these books back that it dawns on you what you’ve done.
Get Really Excited about a Book And Then Never Read it
3. We’ve all been there. It’s release day and you already have the book. You’ve preordered it, or maybe you were in the bookshop that day anyway, you put it to the top of the pile, it’s your next read you tell yourself. You soak up the hype, promise countless internet friends you’ll read it soon. Photo that pretty cover, tell the world how excited you are to see what happens next. To see those characters again. But you never find out. It gathers dust, joins the countless other forgotten reads. At some point in the distant future you’ll probably unhaul it and the tragic tale starts again.
Take the Defacement of Books Personally
4. Why do book sellers hate us. Why do they slap stickers across our precious books that are impossible to peel off and form horrible sticky gooy circular marks that. And aren’t dust covers just the worse? How do they wiggle them in so tight, books come in so many different sizes yet my local library always manages to find a cover that fits so snuggly that it’s impossible to free that precious book for Bookstagram.
Judge Other People’s Shelves
5. The book worm is a judgy creature. When a shelfie is posted up on social media bookworms have an impulse to zoom in, holding two fingers down and peer closely at the titles on offer. It’s the same when visiting someone’s house, if a bookworm passes a bookcase they will pause, eyes greedily taking in all those bent spines before continuing on their way. If your shelves meet the bookworms approval well done, you’ve unlocked a new level of friendship.
Drool Over Those Pretty Book Boxes
6. That exclusive copy of a book, nicely packed with a fluffy fandom blanket and lots of pretty merch. It’s all so tempted, I spend hours drooling over unboxings. If I spent time reading rather than admiring prints, oggling at bookish candles, dreaming of fandom pins, well let’s just say I’d have completed my Goodreads Goal.
Confuse the Lay People with Our Reading Habits
7. Everyday I come into work, unpack my lunch box, laptop and book from my bag and start the day. As the non readers of my office pass me by, sink into the chair opposite me or stand behind me with a steaming cup of tea for a quick natter, they will always spot the book. They will often be surprised that it’s not the same book as last week. They will sometimes remark that it’s a massive thing and what am I doing lugging it about. They’ll occasionally chat about the premise, ask what I like to read, mention the classic they read for A Level English all those years ago, or one of the three books they polished off last year. They will wonder off and I will remember that is only the internet that truly understands.
Being Overprotective of Our Books
8. Every bookworm treats their precious hoard differently. Some bookworms prefer their books pristine, reading them carefully because a single dent to that pretty spine is like torture. I like my spines creased but my covers neat, so the book looks loved and read but is still shiny and new for Instagram. Some readers will scribble across pages, underline quotes they love, annotate margins. Some will fold down corners and then carefully fold them back up, some will just leave their places folded down. I even know bookworms who paint spines and fill the cover with their own art. The way each bookworm treats their stash is totally unique but one thing is unanimously clear: the books are an extension of a bookworms soul.
9. As I previously stated, the book worm is a judgy creature and we will judge our books as harshly as we judge each other shelfies. Covers have an unofficial teering system: the ones we love. We buy these ones, treasure them, line them up carefully on our shelves and take about 100 snaps of them for Instagram. Then there are the ones we’ll get out the library. The covers ok, nothing special, maybe you’ll wrestle the dust cover off for a quick photo shoot but no worries if you don’t. Finally there are the audiobooks. Because who even sees that cover. They are the books with those offensively bright covers, the violent reds or glowing greens that you only see for a few minutes as you tap the play button, drop your phone into your pocket and ignore forever more.
Have a Hundred Books But Still Want More
X. We buy our stashes, we collect our library hordes, we tower books in stacks on windowsills and overflow book cases, we make neat tbr piles and plan lengthy reading lists. And then we scroll. We pop onto Twitter, we flick through Bookstagram, we hop onto each other blogs and we see more books. Ones we don’t yet own but know we’ll love, we follow the turmoil of the hype train until our stacks and piles and plans are just not good enough and at the end of the day the only thing any bookworm wants is to just own more books.