Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Lovin' Libraries

I love LibraryThing! This is like, smut for booklovers. I have so many books that it would take me days to enter them all in, so I'm going to keep adding a few day by day. I've added a new category today of "Books I don't own but will buy when I have money some day."

Yes, I know, LibraryThing is only supposed to be for books you actually have. But I read so much and so quickly that I would go poor if I ever had to buy all the books I read. (Plus, I really do not have the space in my tiny apartment). Also, there are some amazing books that have really shaped some aspect of my writing or thinking, that, for various reasons of space and money, I can't own right now.

That's why I love libraries. The local one where I live is fantastic. If they don't have a book, dvd, or cd, they will interlibrary loan it for me from the county. If the county doesn't have it, they will actually go and buy it for me.

Am I being a hypocrite, you ask? Don't I want people to actually BUY my books someday? Well, yes, but I understand that some people don't have the money, or the space. Should people not be able to read because they don't have the money? (Personally, I think it's stupid that in some places, you can watch tv for free, but not read for free). Also, if they read it at the library and enjoy it, maybe they'll think about picking another one of my books if they happen to be browsing at the bookstore.

Going to the library keeps me open-minded and lets me experiment with books I might not normally read. (I don't know about you, but I hate it when I blow $10 on a book and I hate it).

Furthermore, if people like my books enough that they ask that libraries actually buy them, well, it's GREAT. In the weird bizarre world of publishing, somehow sales to libraries count more because the books they buy are never returned (as opposed to the unsold books sitting at your local bookstore that will eventually be returned to the publisher). There are authors I love so much (Guy Gavriel Kay) that I will buy the book AND demand that my local library buy it, just to encourage him to write more.

All of the authors I love and routinely buy, I've found through the library. Once I'm not a poor grad student whose geographic location changes every few years, I WILL buy those books.

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