sprite writes
broodings from the burrow

November 30, 2021

top ten bookish memories
posted by soe 1:21 am

Today’s Top Ten Tuesday topic from That Artsy Reader Girl is bookish memories. I don’t know if these are my top ten or just the first ten that came to me, but either way…

  1. My grandmother took The Secret Garden out of the library to see if it was the sort of book I might like if she gave it to me. The only problem is that I discovered it at her house, started reading, and then took it out of the library to finish. Luckily, it was a great gift, and I have reread it a number of times.
  2. My first grade teacher gave each of us a book for Christmas that year. Mine was The Littlest Angel.
  3. When I was very small, my dad left me in the basement of the library to run upstairs and pick out some items for himself. By the time he’d returned, I’d pulled about 100 picture books from the shelves for us to take home, including some that we owned.
  4. When the new town library was ready to reopen, a children’s librarian came to our school and read the first chapter of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe to us to tempt us into getting our own cards.
  5. In high school, I got the opportunity to be part of a group interview of Beverly Donofrio about her book Riding in Cars with Boys at our local library.
  6. Nearly a decade ago, I was a Cybils Award judge. It remains one of the coolest things I’ve done, but was such hard work.
  7. My parents used to periodically drag us to Whitlock’s Book Barn, a used bookshop, when we were kids. Rudi and I would return willingly many times as young adults.
  8. Eliot Schrefer recognized me when I attended his book signing a few years ago. I loved his first y.a. book, Endangered, and had talked it up on the blog. I was carrying a knitting bag with my blog name on it and he noticed it.
  9. We attended midnight release parties for the final three Harry Potter novels. The first was at Kramerbooks, which was really less of a party and more of a line since they used to be open pretty much 24 hours a day on weekends back then. We walked home and immediately started reading. The second was at Olsen’s in Bethesda, and we read on the train home. The final was at Politics and Prose, and I dressed up as Professor McGonagall. There were hundreds of attendees, and eventually they had us line up out in the parking lot for our copies.
  10. At the very first ALA Convention that I worked, my table was in the very last aisle. It soon became very clear to those of us shunted out to this territory that this was a ridiculously low-traffic area. The guy across the aisle from me was selling the first collection of his web comic set in a public library (Unshelved), and I was trying to give away health books, but we were both working every person who came down the row. After a couple hours, we could give each other’s spiel and were sending anyone we managed to snag across the way to the other’s booth. I don’t remember if we went out after that meeting or if we just caught up at future meetings, but Bill (and his co-author, “Gene”) was often kind enough to invite me to join in the cool graphic novels group at the library conventions. (Writers and editors of health books do not travel in cool packs.)

Hey, bookish readers, would you be interested in taking part in the Virtual Advent Tour that I run? Holiday book reviews are welcome, as are other topics! Details and signups are here.

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