Writing 101, Day 15: Take a cue from your reader
“A room without books is like a body without a soul.”
— Marcus Tullius Cicero
-Describe a life-changing experience with a book.
-Where do you like to read?
-Describe a favorite bookstore, library, or setting with books.
Un libro per… Ringo (One book for… Ringo)*
M.T. Cicero told about the body & soul of a room, when books were little & rare. Today, we may say that books are the body and the soul of our own existence (not of the space of a room), when the 70-80% of our knowledge comes as an indirect experience mainly gained from books. And… as we haven’t the ability and the direct opportunity to experience many things by own, being part of our knowledge, we get these through the book, and lately (last decade or so) surfing on web, which is also the same result, reading others’ experience.
We are what we read or we are influenced by what we’ve read. When I was eight-nine years old a relative brought me a book as present. It was “The Adventures of Dr. Livingston”. I was fascinated that I read it four-five times concentrating in the descriptions of the jungle and the depicting images of the adventures. Since then, I may say that I’ve never dared being an explorer in hostile odd environments but I’ve travelled a lot, learned new thing, living close to other than mine societies and as a matter of fact I always find that book inside me or in other words I lived my own adventures. Up to a point, I explored my inner world.
The book itself is the right place to read its content though some locations aren’t the correct inspiring places, indeed. For example I can read everywhere apart the mediums of mass transportation. I cannot be concentrated in busses, trains, ships etc.
Where the everywhere is then? It could be in the kitchen, the bedroom, the bathroom, the terrace, the garden, the office, the factory, in the middle of the street, everywhere on earth on a stable, still point. The ideal situation is to lie on a swinging bed, tied amongst the shadowed space of the trees with a cup of coffee in a quiet, friendly environment.
In the place I live the books are sold together with the stationery stuff. So, my description couldn’t be for books only, once my favorite love is for all these pens, pencils, notebooks, erasers, rulers, inks & of course books. I remember when I started school, five years old I went in the local bookstore named HARA (delight). There was a nice smell in the environment from all these objects for sale that makes me crazy till nowadays. Even now, it’s my great joy to buy books, pencils, erasers, ink, aquarelle and the so.
As for library, I think in my shelves are many & great titles of books representing all the different stages of my life including history, philosophy, literature, sociology, theology, as well as different politic statuses, biographies, chemistry, physics, mathematics etc.
God’s will, I have donated books in two different libraries. One was a series of nine books (qualitative no quantitative) great edition with the Holly Fathers of Orthodox Church in Mount Athos to Public Library in Marousi (Municipality). The other was two very rare books written by great authors (folklore scientists) a compilation of Local Traditional Songs to the Library of the Cultural Center of Pontus (in Melissia).
Once, I’d tried to be a collector and I’d spent a valuable account on books. I shortly realized the vanity of it and gave up. From this stage of my life, I’ve got seven old, worthy books. For example, among them is Aesop’s Fables, by Late Hon. Canon of Peterborough, London 1908, John Murray publication.
*The real title from a famous western spaghetti back in 60s “Un pistola per Ringo”. That’s a goofy title, just for fun & imagination.