I am sometimes that person who judges you for dog-earring your books.
I’m a bookmark enthusiast, and I hate it when covers get folded and bent, when pages get folded… I like my books to look neat and tidy. I think I’ll always like my books like that… but lately, I’ve been thinking.
Why are we so judgmental about what people do with their books?
I wrote a post last year outlining some of the things that drive me crazy… and admitting to my own bad habits. This year, I’m rethinking that. I’m all for taking good care of our possessions, but why do book lovers think they can tell people how to treat their own books? Why if dog-earring a page a guilty confession? Why can’t we live and let live?
I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately. At the beginning of the year, I took a leap and decided to purchase a stamp.
As you can see, it’s pretty basic. It’s intended to mark the books I intend to keep, and I’ve decided that starting with the books in my Great Bookcase Crusade, I will keep track of my ratings, too. It’s like a little time capsule within each book that doesn’t interrupt the flow of the story (see my post about annotations).
I’m incapable of stamping it straight.
Also, how many of you are cringing right now?
By stamping these books, I am:
- Reducing their value.
- Making them less-than-mint.
- Labeling them FOREVER.
And I’ve decided… I don’t care?
Okay, so think about it this way – if I don’t intend to sell my books, why am I trying to keep them in mint condition? I’m not saying you should be deliberately cruel to your books… but why can’t a reader simply let her books feel… loved?
At the end of the day, I’m not a reader who intends to sell the books down the road and make money on them. Even the signed ones – I am delighted that they are signed, but I don’t see myself selling them. It’s nice to know I have a thing of value without wanting to part with it.
I think that we tend to judge other people’s treatment of book by our own standards. I’m going to try and stop doing that. You want to dog-ear your books – it is officially okay with me! For me, books are adventures I go on over and over again. As long as my books aren’t falling apart… I’m going to write in them or crack the spines as I want.
And I apologize for nothing.
Are all your books in mint condition? Do you do little things that lower the value of your books? Share your confessions in the comments!