I can probably expect a lot of shocked reactions when people are going to read this article, but I’ve decided to finish the article and post it anyway after months of it being held back in draft-status and me getting more and more excited about publishing it.
I’ve always been a reader that wants to keep her books in pristine condition, which means; not writing in them, not bending them while reading, not making dog ears, etc. Lately I find my morals changed a bit haha. Paperbacks are more often being ‘abused’ while reading and ending up on the shelves with present evidence of being read – stripes in the spines etc. When it comes to my hardcovers, I remain stand-vast; they need to be kept in pristine condition haha. But as for my paperbacks, especially my favorite reads; I kind of love seeing the effects of them being read if I’m being honest. My thoughts/feelings about this particular fact have changed tremendously – shocking at first, but feeling good about it later.
And aside from visible reading effects on the covers, there was this gnawing feeling I had about writing in books. I always thought this was the uttermost horrific thing anyone could do to a book. But I kept thinking about it. Why is it so horrific? Why couldn’t you highlight your favorite parts? Why couldn’t you draw doodle hearts and emoji faces to show your thoughts/love for a certain quote/passage? I decided after a while I wanted to try it out, so I started drafting this article.. which then got swallowed up in my huge amount of articles that are still unfinished and didn’t spent any thought on it anymore for a while.
Until I read a tweet by one of my favorite authors, Laini Taylor, who said this about ‘what authors want aside from getting reviews on their books and to know who your favorite characters are and why in detail, bullet point or essay format:
“And favorite scenes and favorite passages, underlined with hearts and smileys in the margins..”
That imaginary light-bulb above my head went on and I knew it; I had to do this project with a Laini Taylor book! Fortunately I got two sets of the Daughter of Smoke and Bone books, so I decided to pick the paperback edition of Daughter of Smoke and Bone to try my horror antics on, lol. As if it was fate, I just recently bought a pink pen – pink is a color I associate with Laini, because I mean; did you see her awesome hair?! – and a pink stabilo marker, which would be perfect to use for this project. And I was so excited to start doing this but at the same time still a little afraid.. What if I’d end up hating what I’m about to do? But then I though; ah well, worst case scenario; I buy the book again hihi.
I made a start..
Earlier today I posted some pictures on my Facebook page, in which I already showed you guys a quote I underlined with a little note about it on the side. This was my first ever ‘Writing in a book-act’ I’ve performed and I was curious to see how people would react on it. And so far, in my whats app groups and the Facebook page, people are actually really open and enthusiastic about it! I never knew there were so much readers out there who secretly wanted to do something like this as well – I immediately took the opportunity to challenge them to try it out for themselves and I can’t wait to see their end results hehe. So I was pleasantly surprised, yes.
I already used sticky notes the last time I re-read time, which was a couple of months ago. So I went to the first sticky note page and sought out the quote I marked. I’m still deciding on ‘how’ to mark everything. I’ve used the pink pen this first time and underlined it. But I’d really like to highlight certain passages in this book with the stabilo marker for example. So I’m a bit indecisive still on how and when to use the pen and when to use the marker but I’m sure I’ll figure it out along the way.
So yeah, there’s no going back now I guess? haha. I’m curious to see what the end result will look like and how I feel about it then; having the whole book covered with highlighted area’s and underlined sentences. I sent the picture to Laini to let her know I started with this and she was really kind in her response, adding a GIF and all haha!
I definitely plan on finishing this Daughter of Smoke and Bone edition by filling it up with my marker and pen and then I’ll write another article about it;
I’ll discuss the progress of doing my little project, how I felt beforehand, while doing it and how I felt afterwards. And of course I’ll add a picture here and there, because visuals are important I think ;). And no, of course I’m not going to do this with every book I own now. This was just a little project of mine I’d wanted to do for a long time now and maybe I’ll do it with some other favorite books as well in the future – the ones I got multiple editions of for example – but for now this is the only edition until further notice haha!
So, how do you feel about writing in books? Do you think it’s abhorrent and that I’m guilty of being sacrilegious hihi? – I was, until recently, one of those readers who thought it was abhorrent and sacrilegious to do this, lol.
Or do you think about doing it for yourself sometime too? I’d love hearing your thoughts on it!