I have come to realize there are at least three kinds of print book readers I see on a regular basis. First is the tidy reader, second is the messy reader, and third is the hybrid reader. Do you know which you are?
To the tidy reader, reading a book is like eating a gourmet meal in a five star restaurant. All of their books are purchased brand new, although exceptions might made for signed first editions. They want to be the first to crack that stiff spine open and love that new book smell. In a bookstore these readers never take the front book from a shelf or the top book in a stack. They reach behind and under to find the most pristine copy they can.
New books are brought home with as little jostling as possible and stored carefully on a bookshelf or stacked neatly on a table next to their reading chair. When they read, they sit upright and always turn a good reading light on. No drinking or eating is allowed to avoid staining the pages. No notations are ever made or corners turned down to mark their place. Only a proper book mark will do. When finished, the books are still in pristine condition. Only another tidy reader would know that its spine had already been cracked.
At the other end of the spectrum is the messy reader. Reading for them is more like eating while camping with no table, chairs or utensils. Books come from every source – new and used book stores, thrift stores, library sales, garage sales and friends. It doesn't matter whether the book is in fabulous condition or a little raggedy; is clean or a little marked up; and dog eared pages aren't even noticed. As long as all the pages are intact and it's a good read they're happy.
Purchased books are dumped into backpacks or shoved into store bags. Once home, they are tossed where ever makes them easy to grab. Sprawling on the furniture, stretching out on the floor or even lounging in the bath are their preferred reading places. Snacks are a welcome addition as a stain here and there doesn't matter. For the messy reader it's all about comfort and ease. When they are done the books look well used whether they started that way or not.
Somewhere in between these two extremes is where I fall – the hybrid reader. Reading for me is more like having a relaxed meal is a cozy cafe. I love books from all sources, new and used, and take reasonably good care of them. In my youth, I used to turn down page corners to mark my place, but that changed long ago. One day I began to realize how sad the books looked with dog-eared pages and decided to treat them better. Sometimes I use a beautiful bookmark I purchased, but if it isn't handy, I grab a very thin slice of paper to tuck in.
I do love to sprawl on furniture or in bed when I read – the floor makes me too stiff – and very occasionally I have a snack next to me. However, I try to be very careful about leaving any stains and feel really bad if I slip up. I'm also proud to say when I finish a book, it's still in good shape.
Lately, though, I feel like I'm am drifting towards becoming a tidy reader. One of my friends wanted to borrow a new book I'd just finished and I lent it without a thought. When she returned it, however, there was a broken spine, worn feel to it. Out of the blue the urge hit to go buy a brand new copy. I talked myself out of doing that as I was being silly, right? I doubt I'll ever become a tidy reader as I love my reading sprawl too much, but I'm not sure I'll say yes when asked to lend a book in the future.
In the end, what type of reader you are doesn't matter. Any time you pick up a book, your goal should simply be to get so caught up in it you lose track of time. Whatever reading style helps that happen is the right one for you. As one of my mother's elderly friends said to me one day, “Whatever blows your skirt up!”
Marilyn R. Wilson
The next time you're out in public, take a moment to look around you. Each and every person you see holds wisdom in their pockets--pieces of gold they've accumulated as they walked their own unique life journey.
Within these pages, Marilyn shares some of the many pieces of gold she has received over her decade-long career. They have been offered to her during interviews, through random encounters and while facing difficult challenges. The most important? We are each unique and exactly who we are meant to be.
Are you ready to dig for gold? All you need to do is be brave, be present in the moment and be open to the possibilities--then start a conversation.
Praise for The Wisdom of Listening
"Every life has a story and, no matter our background, we share similar hopes, dreams and fears. This book not only gives you insight into the varied lives of its subjects but, through Marilyn's reflections, shows how we each walk a similar spiritual path."
- Robbin Whachell, Founder and Editor-in-Chief of The Bahamas Weekly
"Marilyn shows us, through her compassionate and incisive interviews, how to grasp and link those golden moments, like sparkling prisms of light, into an animated and profound acceptance of ourselves, the people we encounter, the relationships we build, and the dreams that will set us free."
- Gabriella Contestabile, Author, Founder of Su Misura Sensory Journeys
“I was reminded we are collectively each walking our own paths, but often experience similar emotions, feelings, obstacles, challenges, triumphs, rewards and successes. We all learn as we go and we all become wiser as time passes. This is humanity. The diversity in each of us as a whole is awesome.”
- RozeMerie Cuevas, Co-Founder and Designer at JAC by Jacqueline Conoir
Buy the Book
Meet the Author
Marilyn R. Wilson is a freelance writer, published author and speaker with a passion for interviewing. Her career as a writer began in an unusual way: by answering a Craigslist ad from a NYC magazine. The world shifted when she conducted her first interview—she had found her passion.
Since 2006, she has interviewed over a hundred and fifty people from around the globe, co-owned a local magazine, wrote freelance for others, worked as an editor, published two books and provided author support for her publisher. Her goal as an author -- to give wings to the stories of others and to pay forward some of the many "pieces of gold" received during interviews - bits of wisdom that have changed her life.
Enter the Giveaway!
Ends Oct 19, 2018
Book Title: The Wisdom of Listening: Pieces of Gold from a Decade of Interviewing and Life by Marilyn R. Wilson
Category: Adult Non-fiction, 220 pages
Genre: Self-Esteem, Motivational, Personal Transformation
Publisher: Real People - Real Lives Press
Release date: May 28, 2018
Tour dates: Sept 24 to Oct 12, 2018
Content Rating: G