Tuesday, September 11, 2012

"Sometimes the Books Choose Me"

Currently Reading: Take This Bread by Sara Miles and homework!

Well folks, I can now officially say that I am a grad student. I always get a bit overwhelmed when I start something new, but I am looking forward to settling into my new schedule and routine, (ideally) perfectly balancing school with work with family.

Today will be a quick post since I have a lot of homework to finish before we go to Colorado for a few days. One of my best friends is getting married, which makes me happier than words could possibly express. I am honored to stand up with her as a bridesmaid, although I hope not to make a spectacle of myself, since I tend to get overly weepy at weddings. :)

 For those who don't know, I am studying Library and Information Studies, with a specialization in Archives and Records Management. It may be a mouthful but after my two classes yesterday, I couldn't stop grinning. It is a massive relief to feel in your soul, despite the overwhelming feelings or the worries about doing well, that you are in the right place. I am excited to follow this path and see where it leads me.

Speaking of readings for school, I absolutely had to share one for my Introductory class that focuses solely on reading: the act of reading, how readers read and why, and why this matters to libraries. The book is called Reading Matters: What the Research Reveals About Reading, Libraries, and Community by Catherine Sheldrick Ross and I wholeheartedly recommend it to anyone who is interested in the act, the purpose, and sometimes the pure magic of reading. We only had to read the first chapter for our assignment, which mostly focused on why the myth that "reading is dying" in our society is not true. It also explores libraries' role not only to provide learning materials, but also to provide entertainment, and reading for pleasure. That reading for pleasure should not be something shameful, but something embraced, because "people have a deep need not just for facts, but for story." That there are many ways of reading, whether aloud, on an e-reader, or with a group, and that all of these ways of reading are legitimate and important. Throughout the chapter, I kept finding myself mentally cheering or recognizing with a jolt a facet of my own reading experience articulated in ways I never would be able to. One of my favorite passages in the article is quoted from Sara Nelson's book So Many Books, So Little Time, "I don't always choose the books...Sometimes the books choose me." What a beautiful line.

The end of the chapter encourages us as readers and librarians to reflect on our own reading history and experiences. Nelson's quote resonated because it seems that my favorite books- the ones that touched an inner part of my soul in deep and profound ways, or spoke to me in a way that seemed to reflect my own mind- have been ones that I have stumbled onto, not sought out. I love the many ways books come into our lives, and I love that every reader is unique. I love that each book is different to each person who picks it up and I love how diverse the reading world is. I am privileged to be a part of the literary world, and to call myself a reader. It is part of my identity, part of what makes me who I am. I wouldn't want it any other way.

A couple shout-outs today: thank you to my Georgia friend, Jillian, who wrote such a beautiful review of my blog on her own wonderfully written blog, A Room of One's Own. Jillian is a kindred spirit, someone who understands me and my passions, because she shares them herself. I love following her reading journey; if there's anyone I want to spend hours with in a coffee shop someday, it's her. Also, Book Harbinger is hosting "Seven Days with Sevenwaters", in which guest bloggers write about their relationships with the Sevenwaters series. As many of you know, the Sevenwaters series is one of my favorite book series ever. They chose me when I was a lonely, insecure high school kid, and they remain precious to me today. I recommend checking both of these blogs out!

Have a great week! I probably won't be back on here until after our trip, but I'll write soon. Colorado, here we come!


  1. I had a note to comment on this and missed it somehow in the haze of passing days! I believe I read it immediately after you posted. Anyway, it's so nice to know you are out there! Though, I don't drink coffee; I love the smell of it brewing but cannot stand the taste. I'm a tea girl. First difference? ;-) x

    1. It's OK... I love tea too! Maybe not a difference so much as a divergence. Let's go get some tea sometime! :)

  2. When I get to read your posts I feel as though you're still living at home and we are chatting away about our days, lives, feelings, and experiences!! Let's go get some coffee soon! Need to hear stories about grad school!! Love you!!

    1. Oh Mom, that is so sweet! I miss you like crazy and I would love to meet up for coffee sometime. We have so much to catch up on! I love you!


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