That’s right guys, this week (April 13-19) is National Library Week!
"First sponsored in 1958, National Library Week is a national observance sponsored by the American Library Association (ALA) and libraries across the country each April. It is a time to celebrate the contributions of our nation’s libraries and librarians and to promote library use and support. All types of libraries - school, public, academic and special - participate." (x)
With the rise of electronic books, audio books, and the general lack of reading support these days, libraries need all the appreciation they can get! I myself work in a library and it sometimes can be painful just to see how little appreciation the grand rooms of knowledge and stories receive. I remember going to the library every other day after school when I was a kid- the room completely full of incomers and outgoers-and to see so little traffic of people come in every day kind of breaks my heart. They say that libraries are a dying breed but we can stop that. Go check out some books this week, enough to fill in your need for the entire week. Thank the librarians that run your local library for doing what they do. But most of all, spend this week to appreciate the foundations of knowledge and books.
Sometime we read books in-between books. It’s generally not the greatest masterpiece that you’ve ever read or stumbled across, but hey, you can’t find anything better and you just need to have any book to read. Let’s say you’re walking through the bookstore because you just finished the last greatest book/series and you’re still trying to survive through that book hangover so your aspirin for it is, well, a new book. So you’re walking down the aisles, trying to find a book that will even compete with what you just got done reading, but you just can’t find that perfect new story to enjoy. You have one in your basket that sounds okay-not perfect, but something that you could settle on as a consolation prize-but you’re still searching for one that sounds perfect to cure that last book hangover. So you settle on that okay book in your basket, buy it, and go home to read it. It helps cure that craving for a book to read sure, but it’s still not that perfect new series that you want. It’s like being thirsty and you’re out of water bottles because you forgot to go to the store. Sure the tap water will quench the thirst for a little bit, but it’s not as satisfying or rewarding as that water bottle. I like to call these consolation prize books Limbo books, forever stuck in-between the greats. You need that new book series and within the next couple of days or weeks, you find it. You find that perfect new series to read and you love it. And then you find the new perfect series after that. And another book after that. Until eventually you practically forget that you even read that filler book to begin with. You lose memory of the characters, or the story arc, or even the plot. You barely even remember reading it at all and someone would have to remind you of what the main character’s name is. It becomes forgotten-a thing of the past, that poor consolation prize book. The book that was there in that between state of reading and the aspirin to your hangover until you could go party again. The Limbo.
I know I’ve had my fair share of those. It’s sort of fun while you’re reading it, but extremely frustrating afterwards when you can’t remember a thing you read. It makes me feel slightly less guilty afterwards when I hear that the same book that was my Limbo book was also the same for others. I remember when I finished the second book in the Hush Hush series by Becca Fitzpatrick, I still couldn’t recall what the main plot even was from the first book nor the second one even though I literally finished it a week ago. I couldn’t remember the characters or who was friends with who or what they looked like. It wasn’t because I didn’t enjoy the books or like the books, I really did, but they were just more kind of there because I needed something to read and it sounded at least kind of decent while I was on the hunt for a new kicking series. When I went on my blog to share about my distress over finishing the books and forgetting practically everything, I got multiple responses saying that they felt the same. That they simply just forgot about it as well. They knew that they read it, but the details just slipped from memory. We all had to remind ourselves of the character’s names and who was connected to who and what happened in the end to everyone. Because they all used that series the same as I did, as a Limbo book.
It was comforting to know that I wasn’t the only one who had the same accidental response to the story, but it still got me thinking on how odd of an occurrence it is. The fact that you can read a book in-between books because you just finished a book and you have to read books but you haven’t found a new good book so you settle on an okay book as a cane as you hobble around looking for that new book and then you forget about that book that used as a cane until someone brings up that book in the future. See what I mean? It’s an odd ordeal, especially to try to describe to someone, but it’s still an interesting one to think about. The Limbo books aren’t always our favorites-nor on our hate list-but they’re still a forgotten memory of a story. A shadow in-between other books’ shadows.
What’s your biggest language pet peeve when you’re reading a book? Something that makes you cringe and close the pages in horror that the author actually wrote that in? (Examples: effect instead of affect; using the word said over and over again; choppy sentences; over done descriptions, etc.)
So I decided to make a twitter for this blog (there is also a link on the blog page now, just click on the twitter icon below the description). My goal for the twitter is to have a short daily writing prompt where you will submit your prompt to this blog afterwards. There will be a new prompt daily, just to get to the juices flowing and sometimes links to new article type of things. I want the twitter to coincide with this blog for those who prefer the twitter platform better than the tumblr. So instead of one or the other, there will be both that overlap each other, except that the twitter has daily short prompts or just things to get you thinking. If this plan works, great! If it doesn’t: oh well, I tried. :)
Everybody always talks about their favorite books and how much they love a certain character and a certain plot point. People gush about how much they love a certain scene, how emotional they got at the climax, what their favorite quotes from the book are, etc. etc.
However, something that people don’t talk about as much is the stories that they don’t love.
Now I’m not talking a little bit of a “Ehh just not the genre for me I guess. The book wasn’t all that interesting to me.” What I’m talking about is a full on loathing of a book. Like a “If this book was personified into a real person I would punch them in the face” type of deal.
We can easily create a list of our favorite books with only minimal thought. They’re the stories that touched our hearts and we picture the characters as real living people when we went on their adventures with them. But not every book we read is good, and that’s just a fact of life. We can’t go our entire lives expecting that every book we read is good and the probability of it even happening is close to the number of Leo DiCaprio’s Oscar awards on his shelf (sorry Leo, maybe next year).
Throughout all the books we have read and loved over the years, there is always at least that one book that we wish to erase from our memory forever. Whether it’s because of the poor writing, a bad main character, or just because it isn’t your cup of tea, you have the strong need to set every copy of the book on the opposite side of the planet from you. I’m not ashamed of the books I hate and I will gladly list them for you if you asked, just as passionately as if you asked what my favorite books were. My reason for hating each book that I do hate is different for every story and not everybody agrees with my opinion-and that’s okay, because it is after all my opinion and it’s totally cool if what’s on my Loathe list is on your Fave list or vise versa. That’s the fun part of opinions and the fun part of the difference between people.
Because of the variances in opinion between people, people shouldn’t be afraid to say what books they hate or even just mildly dislike. For instance, I hated To Kill a Mockingbird. I know what you’re thinking “*gasps* But-but it’s a classic! How could you hate such a classical masterpiece! Surely you don’t understand the meaning behind it and just need to read it again!” I hear the same thing every time I say that I don’t like To Kill a Mockingbird over and over again. Of course I understood the meaning behind it all. Of course I understand why it’s a classic. Of course even the writing is well done. But that doesn’t change that I don’t like the book and felt the need to claw my eyes out trying to read it for English class back in the 9th grade. Not only is it just not my cup of tea, but nothing even happens in the story. It’s all just a really long set up to the “climax” that isn’t even really eventful. And this is just my opinion. It’s not fact, but it’s my viewpoint on this classic.
You can agree or disagree-or even agree or disagree for completely different reasons-it doesn’t matter because that opinion is yours and belongs to you and you can express it as much as you’d like. And to that, I say good for you! I think people should start voicing their opinions on books more than they do. You have every right to be as passionately in hate with a book as you are as passionately in love with another book. You have the power to throw a temper tantrum over how bad you think a book is and you should. Sing a bright Disney princess song for the books that you love and sing a loud, metal screamo song for the books that you hate. Talk about the books that you hate just as much as the books that you love. Don’t hide just because someone will defensive over their favorite book that you’re trashing; get into a passionate discussion from each side about the “pros and cons” for each book. It most likely won’t change either party’s opinion, but you will get a new insight and an easy way to let out your passionate thoughts of anger towards it. Don’t be ashamed to voice your hate towards a book because you are allowed to hate a story just as much as you are allowed to love a story.
I know it’s my fault.
But pieces of me are slowly disappearing one by one.
Here, have my warmth.
I will give you all my hugs and cuddles because you need them.
I guess I wasn’t thinking at the time
But now I have no warmth for myself.
Here, take my emotions,
Take them all.
Because I feel so much for you,
I figured I could spare a few.
But I was sadly mistaken,
All of my emotions consisted of you.
Steal my smile.
I suppose I flaunt it too much around you so that you assumed I had a surplus of them.
But you took the only one I ever owned.
Take my body.
I practically wrapped it in shiny pretty paper just hoping that you would be like a child on Christmas morning, dying to unwrap me and my secrecy .
But you teared the paper that bound me to shreds.
And realized I wasn’t what you wanted in the end.
But you didn’t plan on giving these things back,
Like I didn’t plan on giving them away.
However, these were mine.
These made me.
And while I handed them to you in gentle hands with the hope that you could appreciate them;
I thought you could use a smile, some warmth, some emotions.
I thought that giving you these things of mine would mean giving you the love that I feel.
But these things of mine were not objects,
They were me.
And since you keep these things left on your closet shelf,
Collecting humiliating dust.
I have not only lost you,
But who I was.
Yes, yes of course! Just submit it or fanmail it. It is absolutely okay to be anonymous! :)
Well that depends on what exactly you want. Do you want advice on how to write about babies through a mother’s perspective, a sibling’s perspective, a stranger in a move theater’s perspective? Or do you want advice on how to write through the eyes of a baby? It depends on who the character is and what their view on children are because some people love babies and some do not. If you can give me more details I can try my best for more advice on the matter :)