Library or bookstore? My answer to the question would be bookstore…and here’s why. And, please, don’t think me out to be a snotty, spoiled lady….but I adore brand new books. There’s something about being the first and only person to crack open that semi-stiff cover. Beautiful, new, crisp, unmarked pages coupled with that brand new book smell. I’m lost immediately within the pages…turning to the next page from the top right corner and gently running my hand down the untouched page. I can’t help but want a book to be new.
I first realized my preference for new books in middle school. I loathed getting used text books from the kids before me and seeing their names sloppily written in the space above where I was instructed to print mine. There mindless doodling and dog-eared pages secretly made my writing hand twitch. This “phobia” continued well into high school and into my college years. I remember very vividly reaching for the new versus used pile of textbooks from my college bookstore. I didn’t care about how much money I wasn’t saving buying new rather than used. I didn’t want to be engrossed in my reading and have to ignore bright pink highlighted passages that someone before me thought may have important…because..chances are…I knew I wasn’t going to find what they thought was important to them important to me.
I read seriously and sedulously. Chewing every word slowly before swallowing and moving onto the next. I mark pages and passages different from the normal person. I created my own editing format that only I can understand. And I also knew that I would keep all my college literature, so that was even more of a reason for me to buy new…when I needed to reference back to those books (which I often do) I would be able to flip to the section I know is important, rather than trying to determine if I highlighted that section or if it was the student prior to me.
Not that I don’t go to my local library or used book stores, I do. I utilize the workshops they offer and I network myself as a writer in my community. But I don’t check out or buy many used books….I’ll browse more often than not. I’ll write interesting titles and authors down, then head over to Borders to buy them so I can read them as fast or slow as I want.