I’ve been subscribing to Bookmarks magazine for almost a year now. A couple of days ago I explored their website and found in their forum a discussion entitled The Seven Things About You As a Reader. It made me think: what are seven things unknown about my reading life?
1. I have a whole bookshelf dedicated to short story collections and anthologies from writers like Lauren Groff, Zadie Smith, Donald Ray Pollock, and Amy Hempel. Most I have never read. All are brand new. This is why I’m on a book-buying ban.
2. I was the slowest reader in my kindergarten class. The summer after I was determined to become a better reader. My father was unemployed at the time so he took care of my little brother and I. That summer I put my little desk next to the back door and stayed there in my father’s way all summer. He taught me to read by answering every question I had on sounds and words. I am forever indebted to him for that summer alone.
3. I didn’t own a library card until I was almost thirteen. Before then my mother would just buy me books from the thrift store she worked at. We couldn’t afford the books and she still bought them without hesitating. I owe my mom just as much as I owe my dad.
4. In the eighth grade I received an award for reading a thousand books that school year. Instead of going to the award assembly where I was told I received a standing ovation, I went to get my hair done for the eighth grade prom. I received the worst hair cut ever. Not going to the assembly is one of the biggest regrets in my life.
5. I dislike hardcover books. I rather have a paperback that won’t weigh down my backpack or purse. Paperbacks are easy to bend and I don’t have to worry about the dust jacket. Besides paperbacks are cheaper.
6. I was the only reader in my family until I started having kids.
7. I go through reading obsessions. Some of my obsessions have included Pulitzer prize-winning plays, homeschooling, fantasy books, children’s books, and authors like Judy Blume, Ann M. Martin, and John Steinbeck. Sometimes the obsession lasts a month while other times it lasts for several months. My current obsession is to get the ton of books I checked out from the library read and returned on time.
What are seven things about you as a reader?