Well the Book Blog Awareness Week shortlists are out and I didn’t make it, but many thanks to the kind person(s) who nominated me, the point being the nomination, naturally. I was delighted to see A Work In Progress and Shelf Love deservedly go through to voting, and disappointed that they were the only blogs I had even heard of on the voting panels. I simply don’t understand how the committee could have overlooked such quality sites as So Many Books, Of Books and Bicycles, A Bookgirl’s Nightstand, Stuck In A Book and Eve’s Alexandria. It’s a mystery to me. Anyway, no matter, I’ll still nick the meme that is intended to accompany BBAW because I need something quick to do tonight. In fact, I’m in such a hurry, that I’ll get a few author friends to provide the answers for me – I’ll have you know that Seneca and Schopenhauer and me are really tight.
Do you snack while you read? If so, favorite reading snack?
‘You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me.’ C. S. Lewis
Do you tend to mark your books as you read, or does the idea of writing in books horrify you?
‘I scribble, underline, note, add, cross out, put in exclamation marks, turn down corners – even sometimes jot down phone numbers and PINs and reminders to buy cat food.’ Susan Hill
How do you keep your place while reading a book? Bookmark? Dog-ears?Laying the book flat open?
‘I confess to marking my place promiscuously, sometimes splaying, sometimes committing the even more grievous sin of dog-earing the page. (Here I manage to be simultaneously abusive and compulsive: I turn down the upper corner for page marking and the lower corner to identify passages I want to Xerox for my commonplace book.) Anne Fadiman
Fiction, Non-fiction, or both?
‘Always read something that will make you look good if you die in the middle of it.’ P.J. O’Rourke
Hard copy or audiobooks?
‘It should be emphasized that learning to read a poem out loud is a way of coming to a full understanding of that poem, perhaps a better way than writing a paper on the subject.’ Poet Laureate, Billy Collins
Are you a person who tends to read to the end of chapters, or are you able to put a book down at any point?
‘I read every opportunity I can, and the pressure to grab those opportunities has grown more intense since the arrival of my daughter six years ago. I read and take notes on books I’m reviewing every day – as well as on vacations and all the major holidays. I read in the hours before dawn and while I proctor my students’ exams and while I wait for an oil change or a doctor’s appointment.’ Maureen Corrigan
If you come across an unfamiliar word, do you stop to look it up right away?
‘It’s a damned poor mind that can only think of one way to spell a word.’
Andrew Jackson, 1767 – 1845
What are you currently reading?
‘I think we ought to read only the kinds of books that wound and stab us… A book must be the axe for the frozen sea inside us.’ Franz Kafka
What is the last book you bought?
‘Buying books would be a good thing if one could also buy the time to read them in: but as a rule the purchase of books is mistaken for the appropriation of their contents.’ Arthur Schopenhauer
Are you the type of person that only reads one book at a time or can you read more than one at a time?
‘It does not matter how many books you have, but how good the books are which you have.’ Seneca
Do you have a favorite time of day and/or place to read?
‘Pope is doubtless at his best in the middle of a formal garden, Herrick in an orchard and Shelley in a boat at sea. Sir Thomas Browne demands, perhaps, a more exotic atmosphere.’ Lytton Strachey
Do you prefer series books or stand alone books?
‘If my books had been any worse, I should not have been invited to Hollywood, and … if they had been any better, I should not have come.’ Raymond Chandler
Is there a specific book or author that you find yourself recommending over and over?
‘No two persons ever read the same book.’ Edmund Wilson
How do you organize your books? (By genre, title, author’s last name, etc.?)
‘”I’ll tidy your books for you,’ a so-called friend said, coming to the house and declaring that she did not know how I stood it…. How can she not understand that if I let her do such a terrible thing as organize my books, I would never find what I was looking for again? Worse, there would never be any wonderful surprises’. Susan Hill