My Strange Relationship with Books

As far as I can tell, I’ve never had a normal relationship with books.

Maybe it’s from being homeschooled. Maybe it’s strictly that I’m strange. Most likely it’s a combination of both.

Anyway, my observations have informed me that the way normal people interact with books is something like this.

They’ll have a book that they’re reading for a while; days, weeks, months even. It’s a nice way to spend free time, a companion for lonely lunch hours. A chapter here, a few pages there.

I cannot relate to books in this fashion.

Mostly, I don’t understand how people keep track of the plot. If something important happens that was referred to in chapter one, which you read two weeks ago, how can you remember it?

I mean, I’ve had this problem with the few books I’ve had a “normal” relationship with. (Mostly school books. Figures.)

The thought has crossed my mind that I suffer from memory problems, but that doesn’t affect my mode of interacting with literature, which usually goes something like this.

I acquire a book, read the back, flip through for maps, pictures, and snippets of dialogue. I let the book ferment for a few days, waiting for a day off. Then, when the glorious day of freedom finally arrives, I devour the book in as little time as possible.

This has some downsides– it’s made me late to work on more than one occasion, and when I’m in the middle of a story, I find it difficult to focus on anything else, causing me to stare off into space at random times.

Also, I’d really prefer not to run out of books so quickly, since it’s been a long time since I’ve found a book that took me more than a day or two to read.

However, I would never change my relationship with books. Despite its downsides, I love the total immersion feeling I get when I’m in the midst of a good book. It’s an adventure. Nothing quite like adventures in imagination!

So, how do you interact with books? Do you like it? Do you read like I think most people do or am I really not that weird?

  1. I read a book continuously until I finish it. If it’s a series, I won’t read anything else until I am caught up/finish the series. I read the Song of Ice and Fire books (Game of Thrones) in a month because of this. You aren’t /that/ weird. Just pretty darn.

    • Oh, okay, good. I’m glad that there’s a spectrum of weirdness and you’re more on my end of it.

  2. If it is a compelling enough story, I spend every free moment reading it, albeit I am a much slower reader than you so it takes more than a day and it has never made me late for work. I couldn’t put the Help or Hunger Games Down. Harry Potter has once again occupied all of my recent free time, week two and I just started the 7th, although I think it’s different the second time through a series

    • Congratulations, you have greater self-control than me! The reason books make me late for work is ’cause I always think that just one more page won’t push me over the edge.
      And you’ve reminded me that I want to read Harry Potter again.

  3. I read that way too. Having a family, though, forced me to face my addiction. When you’re telling your daughter who hasn’t eaten and has dirty diapers to shut up so you can read, it’s time for an intervention. Now I listen to books while doing laundry and driving. Just a few more years and I’ll return to my addiction with relish!

    • Kjiersten
    • December 14th, 2012

    Books are good.

  1. March 27th, 2013

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