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  • Writer's picturebookishnooks

Why I Read

Updated: Jul 12, 2022

'Books are a uniquely portable magic.' - Stephen King

I'm a tragic lover of books.


Stereotypical bookish habits have attached themselves to my life: I read multiple books at the same time (because I'm a mood reader whose moods don't seem to stay put), I contribute fiercely to the independent bookstore economy but don't seem to actually read as fast as I buy, and I sometimes hold books in my arms and smell them. Weird? Yep, I'm very aware of it.


But I also really believe in the power of books. This is a very wanky statement to begin with, but if you're still with me (and I hope that you are), I'd like to explain why.


Knowledge


A couple of years ago, I read Jess Hill's See What You Made Me Do. It's a nonfiction book that presents a researched account of domestic abuse in Australia. Outlining the experiences of many women, men and children who experience trauma in their homes, Jess Hill writes about how we might support them and change Australia's assumptions about a complicated problem.



Maddy holds a book up to the sunshine, with a tree in the background. Image: Madeleine Corbel, 2022.

I remember sitting with my legs crossed on the couch at my parent's house, overwhelmed by these accounts and wondering what the hell an average person like me could possibly do to help. This is only one prevalent issue - there are countless others (climate change, gun laws, education reform and equal rights, just to name a few) that also need our attention. What can I do as one individual?


I realised that books are a good place to start. Books form a massively significant element of information exchange and learning. Anyone can pick up a book on a topic - any topic - and educate themselves. We can live, however vicariously, through the minds and experiences of other people and can become more empathetic members of our society through reading.


So I decided that I would begin here - with words.


Publishing & Editing


I'm now studying publishing and editing so that I can eventually help (in whatever small way) to print words onto paper and get them into the hands of readers.


That's why I read. Or rather, that's my current excuse for my overly large TBR pile and relatively small 'read' stack. I also just really love spending time in other worlds (because whose imagination didn't explode when they read Harry Potter?).


What about you? Why do you read? I'm so excited to talk about books with you and I'm so happy that you're here.


Thanks a bunch for reading with me.

Mads x

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3 Comments


lauren_mccleary
Jul 20, 2021

YES!!! That's exactly why I read too!! To walk a mile in someone else's shoes (and perhaps to escape into fantasy worlds..) But 100% reading makes us more empathetic!! It's amazing to think that just from reading Harry Potter we can become more open-minded to diversity! Also, love your recs for indy book stores!

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Claire Corbel
Claire Corbel
Jul 12, 2021

I absolutely LOVE this! You’d think knowledge is the age-old reason books exist in the first place, but the examples you mention prove how sharpening our understanding of the world is so much more than just ‘knowing’ something about it. This has really got me thinking!

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bookishnooks
bookishnooks
Jul 12, 2021
Replying to

Thank you so much Claire! I'm totally with you: how we see the world can be really heavily influenced by what we read and the context in which we read it! Hopefully there are books out there that will create exciting change for people (I think we can already see it happening)! xx

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