I have a lot of books. I have a lot of unread books. I keep saying I’ll go through the ones I’ve read and ditch some but I never do. Instead I buy more. I don’t know why I do that. Why do I do that? Why do I buy more? I have enough as it is, many unread. So why, as I have many books, do I buy?
It’s a compulsion, etched into my mind, an inherited trait that I can’t fight, an itch that remains out of reach no matter which way I toss and turn.
I have books on all sorts of topics, fictional stories that others have recommended, factual books on many topics, from mental wellbeing, web design, philosophy, gardening, exercise, movies and more. Just about all of them are kept for some tenuous reason or another but I really need to let go…
But that doesn’t help solve the puzzle of why I keep buying new books, especially as I have so many that remain unread, some of which I purchased several years ago.
I’ll quite happily admit that I bought a few books with ‘betterment’ in mind (and ‘of mind’). Be they a classic novel or a book on the great philosophical thinkers (bought from Meg I think) I deliberately chose them with a view to becoming better read, whatever that means, although I quickly ditched those in favour of the really highbrow stuff (The Da Vinci Code for example) so that reasoning has back-fired.
I wonder if I buy books because I don’t trust my memory and I’m scared I’ll forget the name or author of that one killer book? Perhaps I need to do is hack my brain to chuck the name and author of a book into a list, rather than just order it “because it’s only £4.99”. I mean we all know what lies at the end of that road, “it’s only £4.99” soon becomes, “yeah but I’m gettin’ 4 books for under £20!”, swiftly followed by “Ohhh one more for free shipping…”.
I buy books based on author, David Mitchell, Ian Rankin, Alice Sebold, and ignore them for the latest James Patterson. Hell I’ve probably read more pages from Esquire magazine in the past 6 months than I have pages of a book. I know I go through spells of reading but this is becoming an increasingly dry time. A fallow spell of unbroken spines, if you will.
Why do I read? For enjoyment largely. I enjoy the escape, the way time slips past in the shadows as you immerse yourself deeper and deeper into the words on the page.
If this were a movie, this is where you’d get a CGI scene with the words floating up off the page and spinning up and round me as I sit, transfixed.
Ohh and whilst I remember, you bloggers who have had books published (I count 5 on my shelf) aren’t helping!
You know what, perhaps a clear out would help. Allow me to refocus on the books I’ve not read. Yes yes, a clear out is in order.
Let’s not be too hasty though… let me just check what Amazon have on sale…