Being a book nerd

I was reading THIS POST and it got me to realize I might not be alone. Yes, I seem to have quite many symptoms of this illness :P. Pity it’s not very contagious.

So this post is an answer to the one written by Kitty – go check that out and you’ll understand.

First of all – you’re not alone in the snacks area. You’ve got Tacos, I’ve got Crisps :D. I simply love salty snacks.

book stackThe to-read stack

Yes! I must have books just waiting to be read I really like paper books and I have this (way to small) box next to my bed filed with books. Well, there are also some smaller stacks here and there. And don’t even get me started on eBooks and audio. At least those don’t take home space ;). I even got a GoodReads shelf called read-what-you-paid-for and I make it my goal to make it smaller from time to time. And yet each time I walk past a bookstore I can’t revert my eyes, I’m thinking what next book could be added to my shelves. What next adventure awaits between all of those pages.

As much as I don’t mind my book piles I have to admit they do take a lot of space. Add to that the fact that I find it hard to give away or sell the books I’ve already read and you’ll get a home library without actually having one ;). So there are shelves filled with two rows of books instead of one and small stacks here and there. There’s no reasoning behind my book collecting because I rarely re-read them. I already know the story, there are no surprises. There are those few chosen books I’ve read twice and some that I know I won’t read again even though I loved them.

“There are some laws that are coded into the very nature of the universe, and one is: There Is Never Enough Shelf Space.” β€” Terry Pratchett

I also love getting books as a gift, but it’s not easy to choose a book for people like me. You need to know the person, what they like, what they usually read and most important – what they’ve already bought for themselves. I don’t keep a track on what books I’ve bought. I usually remember that, but it’s not like someone can mind-read me right?

My friends might have a bit of advantage due to the fact that I don’t usually buys books that were just published. I always have a stack, so it usually takes me some time to get to the newer titles, especially when it goes to book series.

Book boyfriends

Magnus Bane
Magnus Bane. Think what you want I love the actor they chose for the movie.

Also movie, TV show, anime, even games (Dragon Age series for example). I know it’s weird, but sometimes you just can’t resist some characters. You feel for them, you follow them on their adventure, you’re scared with them, you fight by their side and you feel the satisfaction when they win.

Those characters have to be well crafted though. If you’re facing a simple two-dimensional character, who doesn’t even evolve throughout the story he/she is unlikely to catch our attention.

Unless your imagination runs wild and you craft this character in your mind so well that you don’t even need authors help to make him or her alive. I, for example, have a weakness for the naughty, not so perfect types πŸ™‚ the ones I wouldn’t want in real life, but as long as they stay in my imagination they are perfect. And not because they have no flaws, it’s rather that I like them just the way they are – with all of their imperfections, defects and hotness ;).

Libraries with ladders

Well, when it goes to libraries I’m one of the odd readers. I live in a small town and the only library is on the other end of it and its also small and not very well equipped (unless you count school reads). And I can’t register in any of the library in Warsaw because I don’t live there. Kind of a closed circle here, so I usually buy books and use my friends as libraries :).

But I have to admit, walking into one of those big, lovely libraries (the older the better) feels great. Those rows of books filling shelves from floor to the ceiling. You can almost feel the magic happening there.

“In a good bookroom you feel in some mysterious way that you are absorbing the wisdom contained in all the books through your skin, without even opening them.” β€” Mark Twain

That said, as much as I might dream of transforming one of the rooms into a library with a reading nook, I don’t plan on adding any ladders. Partially because I really don’t like ladders. No matter how well their made, they always look too fragile, too unstable for me.

tea cupCoffee and tea

Aaaah tea. You had to bring it out :D. I’m totally addicted to tea.

Coffee is more of a work thing. I usually start my working day with a cup of sweet coffee with a lot of milk. It’s not that I like it that much, but it helps me wake up and provides an opportunity to talk to people :).

Tea is different. I love it in most forms. I do have my favorite mixes from tea shops and I also have one favorite “lazy” brand – a simple bag of Ahmad breakfast tea for those moments when I simply don’t want to be bothered with leaves.

There are usually two things I do after coming home – I turn on my PC and I feel my two 0,5l thermal cups with tea. Yes, I know these are big cups, but their perfect. They hold my tea warm (or cold in hot summer days) for as long as I need them to.

I always have several leafy mixes at home and at work. That way I can choose a perfect tea depending on my mood and need. From strong black ones, delicate or sour fruity teas, relaxing green and white mixes to blossoming beauty for those special days. I even have one that you should drink with milk and caramelized sugar and that says a lot since I don’t take sugar to my tea and before this one I never likes milk in my tea.

 Library by danidrawsUsed bookstores

Yes, these have the right feel about them. It’s true, I get most of my books online or from one of those very convenient big modern bookstores, but these have as much soul in them as a supermarket. I like walking into those small, cluttered shops filled with used books.

“Books can be possessive, can’t they? You’re walking around in a bookstore and a certain one will jump out at you, like it had moved there on its own, just to get your attention. Sometimes what’s inside will change your life, but sometimes you don’t even have to read it. Sometimes it’s a comfort just to have a book around. Many of these books haven’t even had their spines cracked. ‘Why do you buy books you don’t even read?’ our daughter asks us. That’s like asking someone who lives alone why they bought a cat. For company, of course.” β€” Sarah Addison Allen

Reading nooks, fluffy blankets and cats

When I’m reading at home it’s usually at one of two spots. If it’s bright enough – I’m at the couch near a window cuddled up with some extra pillows, tea cup close enough so I wouldn’t have to get up and preferably my cat. The cat is a really nice addition. All the purring when you touch it, the warmth he spreads when he’s lying on my knees. Cute and cuddly.

And then he suddenly wakes up and runs away like crazy scratching me in the process… Well he’s my cat so he has to be a bit crazy πŸ˜›

If it’s cold I’m all wrapped in polar blanket or the cute woolen one. I admit I could use a super fluffy blanket. One of those that made you think you’re swimming in clouds when you’re wrapped up in it.

When it’s too dark to read by daylight I usually move to my bed and make myself warm and comfy there. And when it gets late and I’m still reading there are always those thoughts:

just one more page… oh this one ends up in half sentence so I guess one more will be fine… oh I might as well finish the chapter…

And so it goes till we fall asleep because our eyed don’t want to stay open any more.

“Cats are connoisseurs of comfort.” β€” James Herriot

cat in a blanket

Book smell

Here we could start yet another discussion paper vs digital. The truth is it all depends on a person and situation. I like paper books. The smell, the weight, the feel of them. I love when covers have various structures and I can move my fingers on the title or an image while I’m reading.

I don’t need a hard cover edition. Not all books “feel” right with those thick, tough covers. I can’t really explain it, but let’s take Discworld novels as an example – I bought them with standard covers because they felt better like this, looked well even. And when I was looking for my own perfect edition of Lord of the Rings trilogy it had to be a hardcover.

As much as I enjoy the comfort of eBooks, the possibility to take them anywhere in your pocket I really enjoy reading a nicely published paper book. It’s actually more likely that I’ll read a nice edition of a paper book than an eBook. I also have a few series that I collect as paper editions. It just feels good to have them around.

Oh and I completely agree that the cook books should be on paper. Even when I find a recipe on the net I either print it or write it down. Plus there are beauties like this one: The Golden Book of Chocolate.

“Books must be treated with respect, we feel that in our bones, because words have power. Bring enough words together they can bend space and time.” β€” Terry Pratchett

Oh dear, sorry for writing so much. I don’t normally do that, but hey, I got inspired πŸ™‚

How about you? Are you anything like me? Do you have some of those crazy habits?

8 thoughts on “Being a book nerd

  1. Pingback: 200 awesome followers! | Magic of books

  2. After reading your blog about being a book nerd, I felt compelled to write a response.

    Every great book has three dimensional characters. We form emotional bonds with them and experience their world through their own senses. They are not static, remaining unchanged by the events that unfold in their lives. Though they resist, they are forced to deal with change, and we join in their struggle and feel their every pain and triumph.

    I read somewhere, that if the writer doesn’t feel it, the reader probably won’t either. The best stories are portals to another life. They open before us, and when we step through, we are no longer ourselves. We become the character in every sense. It doesn’t matter what the sex or age of the character is. When the magic happens, we are filled with their being. We see the world through the eyes of a ten year-old, or an eighty year-old with equal relish.

    If you are a writer struggling with character development, a great book to read is: The Art of Dramatic Writing by Lajos Egri. It is an old text, but every word of it still applies to the creation of modern, three-dimensional characters.

    Each character has their own dreams and hopes. They are each working toward their own purpose. They aren’t there for the benefit of the protagonist or antagonist. They’re in it for themselves. They may be the hero’s best friend, and might even risk their lives to help, but they aren’t slaves to a cardboard plot. They live and breathe. They’ve got their own flaws that they’re struggling with and must overcome in order to succeed. The beauty of it all, is when it is done right, the world comes to life in the reader.

    When characters are well developed, even the most insignificant become noteworthy, and instead of drawing attention from the main characters, they strengthen our bond with them,

    Am I a book nerd? I have never thought about it. I’ve been called a lot worse. I do enjoy a large variety of books and music. To me, it is not about genre. It is about quality. The Thief of Always, by Clive Barker, was a kids’ story, but it captured my attention from the very first page. I’ve read it four times over the years. The Martian Chronicles, by Ray Bradbury, is a collection of short stories, but they form a powerful whole, and I have read it again and again. Each time, I discover something new and exciting.

    I guess, maybe I am a Book Nerd. I love reading a good book, and my appetite for adventure is big. My favorite stories are the ones that are so intense that you want to put them down to ease the tension, but you can’t because the story has you by the throat, and it won’t let go.

    I think I’ll make a cup of coffee and read Where the Red Fern Grows, by Wilson Rawls–for the sixth time.


    1. Hi

      Yes, if we’re talking about great book they indeed have three-dimensional characters, but let’s face it – not all books are well written and yet still, for some reason, we want to read them. Maybe just to finish the story, to find out what happened to our heroes, simple curiosity. I’m not one of those people who can simply read the last page, chapter or sentence of the book and pretend I know what happened. If I don’t like the book I’d rather put it down, never knowing the ending or maybe imagining what might have happened instead of reading the final part.

      I do admire authors who can create a reliable, realistic character whether it’s a man, a fairy or maybe even a talking dragon. All of them can become true if only you know how to make them real.

      Why do I get a feeling you think a “nerd” is a bad word? Maybe I’m one of those a little bit crazy people who liked being called that, who think that it’s good, but I never really felt it’s wrong to be a nerd or a geek. By calling me a nerd you can as well say that I like certain things, I know about them. May it be book, computers, s-f TV shows or anything else. It’s better to be called a nerd and have a knowledge about certain things than being the one who uses this word as an insult and knows nothing.

      And I love Bradbury’s Martian Chronicles and his other stories too. He has a great way of showing the world and what might become of it. Adding a little bit (or maybe more than a little) of philosophy. Sometimes I felt his writing is similar to Lem. Have you read “Solaris”? It’s really worth it.

      Oh, and I’m sorry for answering so late, you deserved a well-thought reply and I didn’t feel like I could give it during vacations, plus there would probably be some grammar mistakes as I’m not a master of writing on my phone.


  3. You bring up a great point about book boyfriends – bad decisions in men are totally cool because there are no consequences when the relationship is fictional.

    Snuggly cats are an extra nice touch, too. However, I have a rabbit who is not the least bit snuggly and enjoys nibbling on books, so if I try to tempt him to cozy up and I have a book in hand…there’s going to be a disagreement.

    And you’re so right that some books belong in paperback, others in hardcover, and a few work best in electronic format. I enjoy audiobooks because I can cook and ‘read’ at the same time, but there’s something special in a tactile cover. SciFi books feel right in paperback, but my copy of Gulliver’s Travels is a hardcover, with a lovely red fabric and gold lettering, and it would simply not be correct any other way.

    I’m so glad you wrote this! Book nerds are the best kind of people. Even if they do call chips ‘crisps’ πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Aww fluffy bunny… the again if it’s white it would remind me of the one from Monty Python and the Holy Grail…

      And the crisps… That’s a school thing they always tried to teach us British English πŸ™‚


What's on your mind?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s