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It’s Time To Start Buying Books Again

November 6, 2020
(image via wikimedia)

A few years ago I sold most of my books. At the time, it made sense. They were taking up too much space, and I wasn’t going to read most of them again. I was enjoying my main branch library and was reading (sampling) more books than I could ever purchase. I could even read/sample books on a bunch of different electronic devices.

Now all of the libraries in my area are only doing curbside. Curbside is great for grocery stores or food pickups, but it sucks for books.

Browsing for books is just as much fun as reading the books. When it comes to curbside, I can browse the libraries online, but I’m trying to cut down on screen usage. Too much of my life is spent staring at screens. My left eye has started to twitch when I stare at the screens for too long.

I don’t want my eyes to keep twitching. It’s a weird feeling, and it can’t be good for me. I’m no optometrist, but I’m pretty sure twitchy eyes are bad.

My eye doesn’t twitch when I read a book. So now I’m back to the book stores again. I guess it’s okay to spend a little money on books in order to get rid of an eye twitch. It’s a fair trade-off.

Unfortunately, I’ve purchased a couple books that I haven’t liked all that much. That’s the problem with buying books. Fortunately, there’s a yard library box in the next neighborhood, so I might exchange books there. Somebody in the area will like the books I’ve recently purchased but don’t like. Maybe the yard box will have some books that I’m interested in too.

I also want more books just in case the grid goes down. For a long time, I believed the grid would never really go down because there’s too much money involved. Now I believe that whoever controls the grid is more interested in power than money. The grid controller could shut everything down just to exert power. If that happens, I want real copies of my favorite books.

Maybe the grid will never go down. Maybe the libraries will open up again. I don’t know. But no matter what happens, I want my books. And I want to read without twitchy eyes.

*****

Enough about me! What do you think? How have your book reading or book buying habits changed in the last year? Do your eyes get twitchy when you stare at a screen too long?

4 Comments
  1. Marilyn Kriete permalink

    I can’t afford to buy new books, and love the library! But since last March, I’ve been buying more books at thrift stores. Spending $2 on a book is less risky when I’m not sure if I’ll like it, and I tend to reject/stop reading at least half the books I start–getting more and more choosy over which books are worth my reading time. We have a Little Free Library just down the street, but my neighbors RARELY donate a book I’d bother reading. Lots of genre stuff, romance and Tom Clancy, etc.

    • “We have a Little Free Library just down the street, but my neighbors RARELY donate a book I’d bother reading. Lots of genre stuff, romance and Tom Clancy, etc.”-

      To be fair, those are the kinds of books I’d donate too. I’d want to keep the good stuff.

  2. My rule is to buy nonfiction, but borrow fiction. I just can’t read on screens. I tried. It’s not the same. I did, though, just purchase three favorites that I haven’t read in years, even though they’re fiction: Rebecca (want to reread it before I watch the Netflix remake), Follow the River, and Snow Flower and the Secret Fan. I can’t explain it – I just wanted to own them.

  3. I haven’t been buying any books, but I absolutely hear you on the library and curbside pickup. One of the libraries in my network allows you to go in and pick out books, but you only get 30 minutes to do it and the pressure is real to find a selection and get out.

    I own my top favorite books in physical form and use Kindle for the rest. I did the ultimate test a few years ago – we moved to Canada for 3 years (partner’s work) and I didn’t want to bring all of my books. I made myself pick 6 books to bring with me (weight limited move + loads of books to storage). And then over the three years, I figured out which books I should’ve brought as well when I wanted to read them and ended up buying a digital edition. Once moving back to the states, I went through all the books I kept and donated 3/4s of them to the library since I wasn’t going to reread them if I hadn’t in the previous 3 years.

    But I do plan on buying a few books as I’m writing a novel and I like physical books to use as references (mythology books, mainly), so that I can highlight and tab pages.

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