Sara and I have had the same problem our whole lives. We are addicted to books. Drugs, Alcohol, and other vices are clearly not needed when we have our addiction at our fingertips (electronic fingertips for Sara- Paper fingertips for me). When we both decided that law school was clearly NOT for us, we had a lunch date where we discussed what would truly make us happy. Neither of us are disillusioned into thinking that we have a 100% guarantee of getting everything we could want out of a future career, but we are hopeful that we will find something that will make us happy. For Sara, it is writing. She has been a writer since the day we met. She is always updating me on the latest writing manuals, young adult techniques and trends, and her latest ideas on future novels. As for me, I love classic literature- the most meaningful years of my life were those spent getting my masters in literature. As for the moment, I am not pursuing a Ph.D. (those reasons might come in a future blog post). So, I am stuck in a strange place where I would love to be a publisher but living in Orange County, CA proves that to be a big problem. So… what do we both do in order to live our dream lives within the pages of imaginary worlds? We read!
My husband and I currently have a monthly budget that we have to stick to in order to make sure we can live on his salary. My book fund was cut … which is a problem…. However, I found ways around that- like a local bookstore here in Orange called “The Bookman” (http://orange.ebookman.com/) who lets me bring in my already read books and trade them in for new ones. Score!!! Although Sara’s husband and my husband don’t always appreciate the time we devote to reading, we feel it makes us the women that we are.
As I was browsing the web earlier this morning, I found this blog by a fellow writer: Blog found here: http://littlemissdorkette.tumblr.com/post/3118512524/date-a-girl-who-reads-by-rosemarie-urquico
It says everything that we feel.
“Date a Girl Who Reads” by Rosemarie Urquico
Date a girl who reads. Date a girl who spends her money on books instead of clothes. She has problems with closet space because she has too many books. Date a girl who has a list of books she wants to read, who has had a library card since she was twelve.
Find a girl who reads. You’ll know that she does because she will always have an unread book in her bag.She’s the one lovingly looking over the shelves in the bookstore, the one who quietly cries out when she finds the book she wants. You see the weird chick sniffing the pages of an old book in a second hand book shop? That’s the reader. They can never resist smelling the pages, especially when they are yellow.
She’s the girl reading while waiting in that coffee shop down the street. If you take a peek at her mug, the non-dairy creamer is floating on top because she’s kind of engrossed already. Lost in a world of the author’s making. Sit down. She might give you a glare, as most girls who read do not like to be interrupted. Ask her if she likes the book.
Buy her another cup of coffee.
Let her know what you really think of Murakami. See if she got through the first chapter of Fellowship. Understand that if she says she understood James Joyce’s Ulysses she’s just saying that to sound intelligent. Ask her if she loves Alice or she would like to be Alice.
It’s easy to date a girl who reads. Give her books for her birthday, for Christmas and for anniversaries. Give her the gift of words, in poetry, in song. Give her Neruda, Pound, Sexton, Cummings. Let her know that you understand that words are love. Understand that she knows the difference between books and reality but by god, she’s going to try to make her life a little like her favorite book. It will never be your fault if she does.
She has to give it a shot somehow.
Lie to her. If she understands syntax, she will understand your need to lie. Behind words are other things: motivation, value, nuance, dialogue. It will not be the end of the world.
Fail her. Because a girl who reads knows that failure always leads up to the climax. Because girls who understand that all things will come to end. That you can always write a sequel. That you can begin again and again and still be the hero. That life is meant to have a villain or two.
Why be frightened of everything that you are not? Girls who read understand that people, like characters, develop. Except in the Twilightseries.
If you find a girl who reads, keep her close. When you find her up at 2 AM clutching a book to her chest and weeping, make her a cup of tea and hold her. You may lose her for a couple of hours but she will always come back to you. She’ll talk as if the characters in the book are real, because for a while, they always are.
You will propose on a hot air balloon. Or during a rock concert. Or very casually next time she’s sick. Over Skype.
You will smile so hard you will wonder why your heart hasn’t burst and bled out all over your chest yet. You will write the story of your lives, have kids with strange names and even stranger tastes. She will introduce your children to the Cat in the Hat and Aslan, maybe in the same day. You will walk the winters of your old age together and she will recite Keats under her breath while you shake the snow off your boots.
Date a girl who reads because you deserve it. You deserve a girl who can give you the most colorful life imaginable. If you can only give her monotony, and stale hours and half-baked proposals, then you’re better off alone. If you want the world and the worlds beyond it, date a girl who reads.
Or better yet, date a girl who writes.