Wednesday, August 27, 2014

I'm a Bad Bookworm, and My Thoughts on Book Shaming


As I was wandering around the internet, more specifically the blog-o-sphere and twitter, I learned something about myself. Something I think I've always known deep inside.

I'm a "bad" bibliophile.

Let's start with my view on book-to-movie adaptations. I don't mind them, in fact I often really like them. I would even go as far to say that sometimes the movie is better than the book *cough* Lord of the Rings *cough*.

You know those mass produced, simplistic YA romances? Yeah well, I read them, and I like them. Speaking of which, I read Twilight and I didn't hate it from the depths of my soul.

And while we're on the topic of book genres, I must mention classic literature. I really don't like them, and sometimes I don't even appreciate them. Frankly, I find some classics pointless and incredibly boring.

Oh and another hot topic amongst book lovers everywhere: E-readers. I actually really like them, and if I had abundant funds, I would probably buy one.

And to top it all off, I'm a slow reader. Not only am I slow in general (in a words read/minute way), I take weeks to finish a book sometimes, because I watch T.V. instead of reading a few chapters of my book some evenings.

You know what I realized at the end of this train of thought? I'm allowing myself to be book shamed, and I'm not the only one.

We book lovers need to stop book shaming people! It's one thing to kid around with a friend who's reading some book with a shirtless guy on the cover, but it's another to condemn them as some sort of subpar reader. I'm as guilty as the next girl, I've book shamed people, and blogged about some pretty conservative book-lover ideals. However, I've learned that as book-lovers we need to band together and recognize that reading is reading no matter what the content.

We need to accept that opinions on books are subjective and that's what makes each bibliophile unique! So maybe I thought it was the dumbest book I ever read, but you might not and that's okay. We need to celebrate anyone who joins the reading ranks, instead of having some elitist opinion of what makes a "true" bibliophile. We need to encourage readers of all types instead of shaming them because they don't live up to our standards.

You read Harlequins? You're a reader.
You read Pride and Prejudice once a year? You're a reader.
You read all the Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys spin-offs (and not just the classic versions)? You're a reader.
You have a hold on Diary of a Wimpy Kid and you're not a ten-year-old boy? That's okay, you're still a reader.
You have the entire Gossip Girl series on your bookshelf? You're a reader.
You've read everything ever (ghost) written by James Patterson? You're a reader.
You take out twenty books in one go at the library? You're a reader.
You prefer the movie to the book? You're a reader.
You don't pledge to always read the printed word? You're still a reader.



I just felt like that needed to be said, so how do you feel about book shaming? Do you have some book related ideals that you think all book-lovers should believe in? Do you need to change? Let me know all your lovely thoughts and comments.

Reading: Stolen Innocence by Elisa Wall
Watching: The Shaytards
Listening: The Civil Wars

14 comments:

  1. So so true. Reading is reading - as long as we read we're all good!

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  2. You had me until the slow reading part - for shame! Haha nah I agree I read what I want I don't really view things based on genre, and can't say I have enough book discussions with people to be judging what or how they read. Classics are probably the only thing that take me ages, otherwise I'll burn through a book in about two days, I just gotsta consume that story!

    Don't judge on what they are, but how they did it.

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    1. My slow reading IS shameful, haha. I feel like we're not the only two who have issues with classics.

      Awesome statement at the end there, btw.

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  3. Love this! Book shaming is awful. We all have different tastes and book flavors make us happy. We read, therefore we are readers. Doesn't matter what kind of readers we are.

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    1. Thanks! I (obviously) totally agree with you!

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  4. Yes this is all true! No one should be shaming anyone for what they're reading or what they like or don't like! Everyone has their own interests!

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    1. Everyone does have there own interests! It's what makes us all interesting:)

      Thanks for commenting!

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  5. Yes! This is so true but I do it anyway. I book shame people ALL the time. Esp those with the shirtless guys, I mean, LOL! And I'm not the best book worm too. I sometimes rather TV, and about those YA romances, I love them, except I actually do hate twilight. Love your blog!

    -M
    http://thelyfoflittleme.blogspot.com.au/

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    1. It's nice to hear that I'm not the only one that prefers TV some days, haha.
      Thanks for the kind words and for visiting SOI!

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  6. Love your post! Book shaming is really bad when it's directed at pre-teens and teenagers. The last thing we should do is make anyone feel bad about reading. It's ridiculous really. I suppose I'm a lousy bookworm as well (or maybe I've just learned to be happy and not pretentious). I love ebooks (no one can see the shirtless guy on the cover), I love romances. I did not love Twilight, but will accept that others did without shaking my head.

    When I was a kid, I made a paperback book cover for my mother because she was so embarrassed by the covers of the romance books she loved to read. They didn't bother her, but she was sick of being judged by others at the doctor's office...

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    1. I totally agree; I find book shaming particularly bad when it's aimed at younger readers.

      Awwww, I'm sorry that your mother had to deal with that kind of book shaming. Good thing you were around to help her out:)

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  7. I guess I'm a "bad" bibliophile as well, then. But I never really thought of it that way. I agree that readers are readers. Maybe more people would love reading if they didn't feel like that "had" to read certain things, or felt embarrassed about what they really wanted to read.

    I too, somewhat enjoyed Twilight. I read lots of the formulaic YA stuff, the romances with the racy pictures, and other such "shameful" things. I also don't enjoy much classic literature. Sure, I have some old favorites (Jane Eyre, Tess of the D'Urbervilles, etc), but most of it I left alone after college.

    It's so much easier to just read what you want and (try your best to) not care about what other people may think.

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    1. "It's so much easier to just read what you want and (try your best to) not care about what other people may think."

      So so true! You hit the nail on the head with that statement.

      P.S. Yay! You read formulaic YA romances too:D

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