Today I'm happy to be picking up a tag passed on to me by friend and fellow reader Helen of the blog I Will Bloom. She answered some questions about her reading habits and asked me to do the same. So with thanks to Sandals & Sunnies for sending it to Helen, and to Julie of Notes on Paper, whose answers encouraged me to start thinking, here are my reading habits:
|I like quirky books. This is my growing collection of Japanese doll pattern books. I work the instructions out by looking at the very lovely pictures|
Do you have a certain place at home to read?
I dream of a sunny window seat, with an enticing view, just in case I want to glance up to rest my eyes, or daydream, or admire next door's new curtains. But as that's unavailable, I almost always choose the bed, if I can creep away to find it without being noticed: pillows at my head, the sun on my back, and a handy shelf for my biscuit (see below) beside. In the evenings it's not as good a spot as it was once; bit I'm hopeful a good new lamp will return reading before sleep to its top spot as the best part of the day.
A bookmark or a random piece of paper?
Now, I do own bookmarks. I'm sure I do. It's just that I'm in the habit of leaving them inside books. I acquire a nice new one, I use it diligently, and then when I get to the end, I toss that book aside and grab the next one, leaving the marker behind in the tossing. I'm perfectly happy to grab any piece of paper and use it instead: often a postcard (usually from a blog friend), a note from school, an appointment card..
|I like books which tell me how to do things. This is a small selection. It leaves out the knitting, the cross stitch, the curtain making..you get the idea..|
Because I never, ever, ever turn down the corner of a page. I couldn't. I'd be a liar if I said I'd tried. Even the thought makes me cringe. Funny, I don't mind battered books at all: ones with loose pages and crumpled covers and a history, I love them all. But still, though: not the corners.
|I like magazines and I find it very hard to throw out the old ones|
Can you stop reading or do you have to stop after a chapter or number of pages?
Yes. I can stop reading quite easily. I'll even stop in the middle of a paragraph, because I'm perfectly sure the rest will still be there when I get back. Similarly, I'll lift a book and find my place even if I know I only have time to read a couple of sentences. Because there isn't anything else I'd rather be doing while I wait for everyone to find their shoes, or for the kettle to boil, or for the glue to dry.
Ah: a contentious one, this. You've caught me out. It's my guilty little secret. I'm a librarian who likes to read while she eats, or eat while she reads. Both, anyway. If a good sandwich is a pleasure, then the enjoyment is more than doubled by the simple addition of a few words to cast my eye over: book, magazine, paper, all are good. And many of you will already know that if I get the chance I choose lunchtime to catch up on my favourite blogs (or making the dinner time, which is almost the same thing). Occupational hazards include crumbs in my keyboard, chocolate chips down my front, and icing sugar hands with a further layer of newsprint.
|I like books for children, even if my retro collection now make me look more than a little retro|
Do you watch TV or listen to music while reading?
Not books. I would never try to read a book and watch TV at the same time. But I do read the paper and watch TV and carry on a conversation all at once all the time.
One book at a time or several at once?
Define "several". Are we talking two or three extra? One in every room? A spare in the car? which? I have books I've been reading for several years, several books I reread every year, books to tell me what I need to know, books to make me laugh, to think, all on the go at once. I will even read one for ten minutes and then dip into another, especially at bedtime. I'm an incurable dipper.
I'll read anywhere, given half a chance. I look forward to piles of magazines in the doctors or dentists; and I have little time for the killjoys who work to have those piles banned for hygiene reasons. Have you ever heard of anyone catching their death from a comic? No, I haven't either.
Reading aloud or silently in your head?
Now I'm a silent reader. But I grew up doing a lot of reading aloud. Teachers, grownups, seem to assume that a good reader is a good out loud reader. I don't think that's always true; but for me it translated into a lot of narrating of school plays and reading round the class and standing up in church. Later, when I was doing A Level English, I used to wait until everyone else was out before I opened my set texts and heard them speak. I remembered it by listening to the rhythm of it and in time I discovered this was how I should revise any of my school work. I read it out loud.
|And I like my books a little bit mixed up. What? another book secret? I'm a librarian who doesn't shelve properly. I like the fact that I know where every book is on the shelf, even when it hasn't been classified...|
Do you ever read ahead or skip pages?
All the time! Is that guilty secret number two? I can't seem to stop myself. I can read the end, and then go back and read the rest, and not have my enjoyment of the whole spoiled in any way.
Do you ever write in books?
No. Never. Couldn't do it, wouldn't do it.
So that's me: what about you? If you'd like to share, please consider yourself tagged!