I have this problem with books

I have this problem with books, but I do not think it merits an entry in The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. However, I cannot be certain, because it is not like I have a copy and could easily look up a ìcategoryî to find out if I have a disorder beyond being a bibliophile.

Granted, I love books, both their physical attributes and the possibilities of what stories, along with the language in which they are told, could be secreted inside.

I have been a reader since elementary school, the intensity and frequency of my obsession following a wavy line on a bar graph. In college, for example, I read textbooks and novels for my English class and was too read-out for reading during my free time. Now, I read instead of watching television, to relax and to escape into a place other than Larimer County, Colorado.
So my problem is that I am very committed to my books, whether I buy them, borrow them from family or friends or check them out from the library.

I can start reading a book and not like it, or even hate it ñ I donít like the style, the setting, the plot or the characters, for example ñ but I have to give it a chance. I figure 50 pages is fair, and then if I still do not like it, well, Iíve read 50 pages and thatís 1/6th the length of the average book I read. I think, oh, I put all this time into it, Iíll read some more. And when I still donít like it, I have become committed to finish the book. I have to finish the book! Even though life is too short to read a book one does not care for, I end up reading in a race trying to finish the book to read something I like.

Iíve decided my problem is book-aty, or an excessive loyalty to books that causes one to make A Too-long Yowl of frustration.

2 Responses to “I have this problem with books”

  1. Cindy Strandvold says:

    I have the same problem. Only recently can I stop reading a book I don't like, at least sometimes. And I also used to think I had to read every article in a magazine, too!

  2. Cheryl Courtney says:

    A Too Long Howl of frustration...well said. Books are a treasure, and have always mesmirized me. Such an adventure to tuck under the arm and curl up in a chair to re visit. But, I too have trouble deciding when to give up on a story, to put down the words as just not worth the time. However, as I grow older, I do this more and more. As Tony Morrison says, in order for a book to be worthwhile, "It has to be worth the trees." Thanks for the thoughts.

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