October 14, 2012
I know that there are some people out there who are outraged when someone writes in a book or underlines passages. I do not subscribe to this viewpoint, which is just as well since I am one of those people who does that kind of thing. To me it's more like adding value. When I read library or otherwise used books, I'm always interested in what others have written in the margins and give underlined or highlighted passages a closer look.
Those markings can come in really handy in books you read more than once. I was delighted a few days ago to find my old beat up and marked up copy of Moby-Dick in my daughter's house. I'd been making do with another one, but this one had most the coolest passages underlined and bookmarked. Sure, it's in pretty bad shape and the binding has started to come apart, but I'd prefer it to a new one any day.
For that matter, aside from rare editions and precious manuscripts, I think books are meant to be consumed and used. If I was a real writer, I'd be more honored if my books were read, re-read, marked on, underlined, lived with and used up than if they sat in pristine condition unused on a shelf.
Speaking of Moby-Dick, I feel a long literary jag coming on.
NO LINKS today.