What Kind of Book Person Am I?

OK, since my last post went over like the proverbial lead balloon let me beat this dead horse (and attempt to work in a few more clichés) by answering my own questions. Below are my answers to the survey questions posed yesterday.

1) What is your favorite type of bookstore?
A. A large chain that is well lit, stuffed full of books, and has a café.

I must admit I am a fan of places like Barnes and Noble and Waldenbooks. They are bright, cheery, and have both new books and a bargain pile. Plus a little coffee never hurt. I even go so far as to sign up for those discount cards.

2) What would excite you more?
A. A brand new book by your favorite author.

There is just something exciting about finding out one of your favorite authors has a new book out, rushing out to buy it, and reading it immediately. I do this with all William F. Buckley books (see here).

3) What’s your favorite format?
A. Novel

I don’t have much experience with short stories or poetry. It isn’t that I don’t like them but rather that I am unfamiliar with them for the most part. I have always loved novels both contemporary and classic. Although, some short novels or novellas straddle the line I suppose.

4) Favorite format, part II.
A. Contemporary fiction.
B. Classic novels.
C. Genre (mystery, espionage, etc.)

I am not sure I could pick one here. I read widely across genres and times. I am seeking to broaden my knowledge of classic English language novels but I also read contemporary fiction and mysteries, thrillers, etc. In fact, I have failed to really become a expert in any one area because of my inability to focus.

5) Favorite format, part III (none of the above) Fiction or non?
C. A mix of both.

I read a steady mix of both. I love to read about history, politics, culture, and religion but I find I need to mix in a healthy dose of fiction or I get burned out. Non-fiction can often require a lot of concentration and sometimes has a weaker narrative pull. Fiction relaxes me and helps me rejuvenate after the heavy non-fiction reading.

6) Does the design and condition of the book matter?
A. Yes, I love a well designed book and keep mine in mint condition.

I will admit I am a little over the edge on this one. I love well designed and well packaged books. I am particularly drawn to a series or special editions. I have chunks of books from the Everyman’s Library, the Oxford World Classics, the Penguin Lives, the Modern Library Chronicles, and the Barnes and Noble Collectors Library series to name a few.

7) On average how many books do you read a month?
B. I am dedicated. I read 4 or 5.

Well, currently I have read 30 books in six months so that comes out to five a month. Whether that pace will continue through the football season is to be determined.

8) Do you prefer to own or borrow?
A. There is a particular joy in owning a book. I have a large library.

As you can probably tell from some of the answers above, I like to buy books. It has gotten worse as I have risen in income level. I really should use the library more but I do so love the feel of a new book in my hands! I also enjoy the thought of having so many books at my finger tips. If I need to looks something up, it is right there. If I want to dive into a book, I just take it off the shelf. It is convenient but it is also expensive.

9) Where do you get (the majority) your book news?
B. Magazines.
D. Blogs.

This one is a bit of a mix as well. I do read a lot of magazine reviews and I do read blogs for insights and tips. But I also get a lot of information from my non-fiction orientated book clubs. I take book news wherever I can find it, but the majority of it comes online.

10) Are books a professional obsession?
C. Kinda, I write the occasional review but have a regular job outside of books.

I will go with C here. I have a day job and have only published one formal review in a magazine, but I do get free books from publishers and I do hope to publish some more reviews in the future. So call it a hobby with the potential to pay on occasion.

So there you have it, my answers to these burning questions. I hope you found them interesting or at least enlightening.

Kevin Holtsberry
I work in communications and public affairs. I try to squeeze in as much reading as I can while still spending time with my wife and two kids (and cheering on the Pittsburgh Steelers and Michigan Wolverines during football season).