I’m writing to you today from my home-away-from-home – the library. I’ve already started making a habit of dropping by on my days off to see if we got any new arrivals in books or DVDs and I think my coworkers are starting to think I am insane for doing this – regardless of the fact that I live a 5 minute walk away.
The theme of today’s post is a cliché but relates to reading – be true to yourself.
I’m not saying you should never try reading something new and out of your comfort zone – I will be doing the same by reading some Sci-Fi books this year. You can discover something you really like if you give it a chance… but if you already know you’ll hate it, don’t bother reading it.
I need to take my own advice.
While I was working the other night a patron brought back a copy of Gone Girl, a book that got phenomenally popular over the last year. While I was getting my MLIS in Pittsburgh I’d be on the bus or walking my dog on any given day and spot at least one person reading this book . Someone at work would always be telling me how good this book was. It was everywhere. I didn’t care.
There was something about it that made me know I’d hate it before I ever picked it up. I have no clue what it was – some kind of an intuition regarding several factors including but not limited to: the title, cover, and popularity.
Despite this, I went against my better judgement and tepidly checked it out. I started it that night and got through 200 pages like a robot, getting no emotion out of the experience at all. I read the next 200 pages the next day and finished it. I hated it and I had to finish it because I hated it.
On the bright side, it didn’t fill me with nearly as much rage as Happier at Home or Under the Tuscan Sun did (which seriously probably wasn’t healthy). But regardless, I get to add that title to my hate list while remaining irked that I went against my intuition and bothered reading it in the first place.
During the experience I was reminded of one of my first shifts at the library when a “floater” came in (an employee who floats from branch to branch and isn’t a permanent employee of my location who I will now refer to as Floater) and immediately started griping about how we have The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith (aka JK Rowling) on display. He went on and on about how people only say they liked it because she wrote it and it got horrible reviews before they knew it was her book (which isn’t true). On and on he went about how much he hated it. Then Floater goes on to say that he’s never read and it doesn’t know anyone who’s read it and he hates seeing it on display. It really irked me that he felt that way – that he didn’t even KNOW anyone who had read it and he still hated it. But now I’m a little more understanding – some people in general don’t like to have titles/authors pushed in their faces. Other people rely on this method in order to be able to pick out anything to read, but others cringe at it. I guess I’m a little like Floater and am a cringer sometimes.
So go on, fellow readers, and learn from my mistakes. Take chances but remain true to yourself.
(Unless you like getting book-rage)