This is the second of three posts on how much I loved this book. Bear with me! If you missed Part 1 on “creating your own world,” I hope you’ll check it out.
The book is Steal Like an Artist: 10 Things Nobody Told You About Being Creative by Austin Kleon. Here’s today’s excerpt.
“Always be reading. Go to the library. There’s magic in being surrounded by books. Get lost in the stacks. Read bibliographies. It’s not the book you start with, it’s the book that book leads you to.
Collect books, even if you don’t plan on reading them right away. Filmmaker John Waters has said, ‘Nothing is more important than an unread library.'” p.20
I used to have a sweatshirt that read, “So many books; so little time.” Being that we live in Texas, I never wore it much, but I remember buying it at one of those mall kiosks (this was the 80’s) and feeling like I’d finally gotten something that I loved. (I am positive that if I found something like this sweatshirt today, my hubby would never let me purchase something so hideous.)
I also used to own hundreds, maybe thousands, of books. Every time I read one, I had the need to own it, to surround myself with all the stories and adventures I had “been through” with the authors. I think the folks at Amazon used to know me on a first name basis. You know, when it began and they were small and the folks that worked there had blogs about their favorites, etc.
I immerse myself in movies and books to the extent that I lose my sense of the present tense. I am in the movie or in the book’s story. So a good book literally leads me on new adventures or to new understandings. And once that happens, I want to always have a souvenir from the trip.
It wasn’t until I got married and my hubby helped me move all those books into our first home that I considered there might be too many. I tried giving some away but it felt physically painful. Since then, I have gotten really good at separating myself from the actual paper in which the stories reside. (There should be a 12-step program for this! Bibliophile Pack Rats Anonymous?) Thanks to the encouragement from my sister, my hubby, and decluttering books and blogs, I have lighted my load. Of course, I have my favorites (the ones in the photo above are pretty much all I have now) and I have my Pinterest boards (Haven of Books and other people’s Bookshelves that I love to look at. A girl can’t go cold turkey now, can she?
Remember also that I painted my favorite books so I can look at them every day. Am I obsessed? Tell me you are like this too!