I’ve been collecting books like a fiend. I can’t get enough of them. I keep buying them like they’re water and I’m dying of thirst. Like I’m suffocating and these books are the only source of fresh air that I have to breathe.
I’ve hardly touched any of the books I’ve collected so far, but I’ve found out that it’s ok. There’s even a word for it – Tsundoku, which is a Japanese term for the practice of buying more books that you can ever read. There’s another word for it – bibliomaniac. But that’s book hoarding and it’s not healthy. I like Tsundoku better – it’s just collecting books because “the presence of books acquired produces such an ecstasy that the buying of more books than one can read is nothing less than the soul reaching towards infinity. …We cherish books even if unread, their mere presence exudes comfort, their ready access reassurance.” So says Edward Newton.
I already have a huge bookshelf full of books I’ve collected from my previous life as an animator. I bought every book on Amazon I could find that had anything to do with traditional animation (the 2D kind, like the old Bugs Bunny cartoons). I haven’t read even half of them. But it’s so comforting to have them around. Like by some osmosis their sheer presence will impart to me the knowledge of those authors and gift me their expertise.
Obviously, that’s not the case, but it’s nice to have them around for reference. As I’m sure these writing books will do the same, even if I don’t read them all cover to cover. But I’ll try. Because the number one tenant for a writer is this: A writer READS.