The ways I show my books they are loved:
- I always have one in my purse.
- I take them into the bath.
- Some were rescued from library throw-away piles and "free" boxes at yard sales.
- They are slept on and with. All drool is carefully wiped off.
- I read them.
- I hold them.
- I flip through their pages.
- I rearrange them.
- I write notes in them - about the plot, an idea for my next story, phone numbers, grocery lists, doodles.
- I break bindings.
- I free them from tight and unfashionable book jackets.
- They are spider-squishers.
- I have used them as step-stools and seats.
- I dog-ear pages.
- I eat salads with drippy, splashy dressings in their company.
- I hold it firmly at the bottom of the spin when reading on the couch. In bed, the top of the spine is held tightly.
- I bandage ripped pages with tape.
- They sit in the sun all day with me.
- I stack them on the floor for ambience, and so as to not cram them into my over-full shelves.
- I keep the ones that were left out in the rain and have been dried, hanging over the back of a dining room chair, above the heating vent.
- I cry over the moldy ones... Sometimes I will read them one last time before they must go...
- My bookshelves are on exterior walls - they are insulation.
- And that fine layer of dust? It makes each one feel like a treasure when I pull it down to read.
But my books? Those are the highways and byways of life meant to be walked, ridden, biked, and skipped, picking up new friends and experiences along the journey.
A little bit of "road rash" is a sign of a book well-loved.
For proper book-care...