Confessions of a Bookaholic

Some of my books

Temptation is everywhere

Ladies and gentlemen, my name is Fiona and I’m a bookaholic.

It started when I was a child and discovered the thrill of being transported to another place by a book. I was hooked almost instantly.  I began to long for time that I could spend alone with a book – or preferably several. I begged to go to the library when other kids wanted the zoo or the cinema.  I got caught reading under the bedclothes with a torch and even (and I blush at the thought) in the toilet.

I have books stashed in strange places in the house, so that wherever I am I can grab a few pages. I even have a book in the car and a book in my handbag, it is that bad.

I have tried to go cold turkey. I  even managed a whole day once without reading, but then had to give in towards bedtime.

The early hours of the morning, I have discovered, are the most dangerous. I wake at around 5am and then spend an inordinate amount of time skulking among the virtual shelves of Amazon, desperate to spend my hard-earned cash on yet another book.

I will read anything, but I do the draw the line at reading fiction during the day. If I started a novel before 6pm I would consider myself in serious trouble, so try to stick to non – fiction during working hours as that way I can pretend it is research, although I am fooling no-one.

I know I should slow down. I read at breakneck speed, sometimes not even enjoying the contents that much. What is frightening is that sometimes I don’t even remember what I have read, unless I check my bookshelves or the order pages of Amazon.

The thought of being in a place or situation where I am not able to get a book easily is very scary. I have to make sure that if I am going anywhere for a long time that I fill up on the written word before I go. Excursions are planned around books – bookshops, libraries, second hand stores, book exhibitions … I think you get the idea. It’s not pretty.

Is there a cure? For a while I thought it might be ebooks. I tried them but they just didn’t hit the spot. They didn’t feel right or smell right. They didn’t flop nicely onto my sleeping face like the comforting open spine of a paperback, so I slid back into my old habits.

What is worse is that I am not just a reader, but I write too. Yes, I supply others with words and pages and books and get them hooked. Writing is the job of choice for a bookaholic, you get to spend time with the object of your desire every day and no-one bats an eyelid.

I am a hopeless case, but I know that I am not alone.

Yes, I’m talking to you. You, with your surreptitious glimpses at concealed pages, with your  voracious appetite for words and your stolen chapters. You might as well admit it – you’re as bad as me.

Aren’t you?






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