19 December 2011

Book Obsession

I am obsessed with books and reading. 

My current year’s (i.e. 2011) reading list is too long to finish this year, at my present reading rate.  It comprises mostly contemporary literary fiction, but there are a few modernist and classic titles.  The list began when I asked my friends for recommendations of contemporary literary novels.  Then, it grew as I read a novel I liked and searched for others similar to it.  There are close to one hundred books on the list; which does not include the non-fiction, philosophy, poetry and short stories I want to read. 

This may sound rather benign and harmless, but nearly every time I get online I am looking for more books; I often check books out from the library that are not on my list and attempt to read them concurrently with the listed books. 

Books are always on my mind: at night I think about what I want to read next from my list (or not from my list); during the day I have a stack of books that I am working on, while I look longingly and with desperate remorse at my shelves of books (and stacks of books that won’t fit on the already full shelves).

It’s not that I’m a book-pack-rat.  And, it’s not that my books are like first editions or collectible; most of them are paperback.  I read, have read and plan to re-read most of the books I own.  If I read a book and it doesn’t rate at least 4 stars and fairly beg to be read again, then I will get rid of it: either selling it on Amazon, donating it to the local used bookstore or swapping it on PaperBackSwap

Still, I have a lot of books and have a very hard time, with withdrawal-type symptoms, when I think of giving up buying them—even for a short time.  My palms are sweating now and my heart is pounding, and I’m merely thinking about it so I can write about it. 

I have not sought medical help for this, but am beginning to think it may be necessary.

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