A few weeks ago I mentioned that I don't use the library very often for somewhat ridiculous reasons. Mainly, because I already have so many unread books on my own shelves I feel funny about checking out other books to read before the ones on my shelf. That in itself isn't really a ridiculous reason--actually it's quite sensible to want to get through my own books first before seeking out others. Especially when most of the books I own but haven't read have sadly been sitting on my shelves for years!
The ridiculous part comes into play when I think about how easy it is for me to drive to the bookstore when I want/must have a book even though I sometimes won't actually read the book for a year or even longer!! It's a sickness, I swear, but I bet some of you do the same. Even if you wont admit to it!
The reasons why I don't use the library are varied, but once upon a time I was a loyal patron. I remember visiting the library all the time as a child and just as frequently as a teen. Until I checked out The Joy Luck Club my senior year of high school. I don't remember all of the circumstances, but what I do remember is that I failed to return the book, got late fines, got threatening letters about my [minimal] fines going to collections, and finally my card was revoked. I never did finish the book, though I did return it, and never visited the library again outside of what was needed for college courses.
Once I had my own income and budget, I didn't need to use the library anymore. I could hit up massaive book sales and come home with boxes full of books. Or if there was something I really wanted to read, I could just pick it up at the store. Truthfully outside of the massive book sales, I didn't buy books to read later until I started blogging, and now my shelves are literally overflowing with books.
My local library isn't very conveniently located to where I live, but a year or two ago they built a new branch right down the street from me. I worked up the courage and got my first library card in over 10 years. I still haven't checked out any books (save for one needed for book club), but I've rediscovered the library through their online audiobook database. I've been able to download audiobooks online and upload them straight to my iPod without having to leave my living room.
|Photo Courtesy McKinney Public Library|
The other day, however, I couldn't find an audiobook I needed online so I ventured to the main branch of my library. All the way downtown (downtown McKinney isn't really a downtown...just one of those cutsey little squares with a courthouse and fun novelty shops). I was astounded by the hugeness of the library. The shelves. The books. The smells. It brought back so many memories from childhood (though back then I lived in another city). It's still too far for me to drive to on the weeknights after work, but having been once has broken some of the intimidation. I'm not sure I'll ever get to the point where I'm checking out books regularly, but I'm trying to listen to audiobooks more frequently and hope to utilize my library in this way.
What kind of relationship do you have with your public library? Do you check out a lot of books or do you tend to purchase books you want to read instead?
Looking Back to Last Week
-I shared random pictures from my iPhone during Wordless Wednesday
-I made a delicious cake from scratch and wrote a post to prove it
Looking Forward to Next Week
I'm hoping to be a little more bookish this week than last! Ulysses starts on Tuesday and I have my book all flagged and ready to go. I listened to the librivox version of Episode 1 yesterday while sewing and it was horrendous. Like seriously bad. I think it was just a bunch of drunk grad students who got together to read the book. Ha! I have a review of The Book Thief half written and hope to get some thoughts on True Grit down as well. Finally, I'll be hosting this month's Whip Up Something New challenge so watch for the link post on Tuesday (fingers crossed).
The rest of today? Sewing, grocery shopping, and celebrating my dad's birthday. Whew!
Hope you're all having a lovely Sunday!