Book Swap of sorts

April 30, 2008 § Leave a comment

Three amigos we were not so long ago, doing writing workshops together, inspiring one another, meeting regularly, talking, writing, doing the book thing. 

We met last night over a chain restaurant dish of food and glass of wine (risky business in a mall eaterie but the waitress SAID it was a decent pinot grigio). It was our first trio gathering in more than a year.

Conversation ranged from hair to aging to travels to assignments. I found myself listening, asking questions and doing a lot of listening. Having leaped from topic to topic, when the plates were plunked down in front of us,  Marge asked “What books did you guys bring to share?” (She had planted the idea in an email the day before our get-together.)

Hippy Sue had forgotten to bring hers, which was totally understandable given the car repair run-around she was having and the frenetic planning that it requires.

I brought one book along. Just one. Knowing I might not see it again. It’s one I like. But you have to realize that book borrowers, while excited to have something “else” to read, something borrowed, often forget to return the book; it sits on their shelf until they’ve seen it so often, they believe it’s theirs.

I had chosen carefully. This was in fact a book that Marge had given me. I handed it over hoping, betting actually, that she would enjoy it. I figure it will come back some day; her inscription to me in the beginning of the book may be the prompt that brings it home. If it doesn’t boomerang, that’s cool, too. Her Colorado cabin will be a good place to be shelved.

It’s a book on writing. I am as crazy about books on writing, GOOD ones, as I am for books about NYC. She gave it a cursory glance and popped it into her purse. Displaying serious ADD tendencies, our conversation hopped to the next topic. One minute we were on that book, the next, on Harry Potter and the next, travels in Europe.

For her part, Marge offered a Bill Bryson, two self-publish type books, one on communication, the other on successful women, and book on writing, Stewart’s FOLLOW THE STORY, one I already own and cherish. Hippy Sue took it with some urging. I took the self-publish on successful women. I am curious about what defines a successful woman. Other than herself.

It was a good evening. We renewed and will come back together in another six or 12 months.

A true book swap should be a sharing of books you deeply care about; there should be some excitement there. The hunt continues among those of us who are true bookaholics for the next “find,” the next tome to clutch and admire and finally open and read and travel to the “where” the book creates. I salute you, those who are willing to part with a treasure, not sure if it will come home again or not. The risk is worth it among worthy books. Read on. Pass it on.

Oh, I need a book group.

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