Confessions of a Bookaholic

Hello, My Name is Davida and I am a bookaholic.  My addiction started as a young child. My earliest memories are of my mother and father reading to me.  They exposed me to Agatha Christie and Louis L’Amour before I was old enough to hold the book myself.  My hungry young mind inhaled the second-hand words hungrily.

I remember my first book so clearly.  I carefully opened the light green cover of “The Secret Garden”.  The smell of fresh paper and book binding glue hit my nose and I felt the rush.  I would read and re-read that book until the pages were worn out.  It was the gateway to a whole other world.

We didn’t have a TV in our home, and so we would sit in the living room and read the complete works of Shakespeare. As a teenager I became a social outcast.  Normal kids could not quote whole Shakespearean Sonnets from memory. Normal teenage girls were not familiar with Kipling and Sir Arthur Quiller-Couch. The addiction had already begun to take its toll, separating me from my peers.

The addiction grew worse over time.  I function in society as best I can.  But there are times when the hunger for words is to strong for me to resist. I have defied authority and broken the law to get my fix.  As a child I would disobey my parents at bed time, reading underneath the covers with a flash light.  As an adult, many a traffic law has been broken as I read at stoplights and prop up my book on the steering wheel if the freeway slows to a crawl. I hide in the bathroom away from my children, jonesing for just one more page.

In my thirties the hunger grew so much that I was not happy just reading other writers words.  I began to write my own stories in the hope that I could sell them to others to support my habit.  I couldn’t wait for my favorite authors create stories, I had to make my own.  Stories began to form in my mind, and even though I begged and pleaded, I could not find others to write them.  They kept insisting I should write them myself.  Tom Schreck: Writer, Teacher, Boxer was the coldest of all.  He kept pushing me to write, insisting I had the talent.  My husband, probably wanting me to stop buying other people’s work, had always encouraged me to write.  But I think that was just to save money and free up space along our living room wall.

And so I began to cook up adventures.  Hours spent crafting the perfect mix of character, action and conflict.  I spend every waking moment reviewing the plots in my mind, obsessing over the smallest detail. And then I wait on the corner, hoping someone will come along and buy my work, always scared that the powers that be will consider it unworthy for public consumption. I write, I read and hunger for more.  The end of a book is like coming down off a binge.  I am depressed that the story is over, longing for another.  Some of my favorite authors only put out a new book in their series once a year.  I pre-order the book, waiting on pins and needles for it to arrive.  Like a kid at christmas I rip into the packing material and devour the book in a night.  Then I hit bottom, realizing that another book wont be along for a whole year.

I fear this sort of addiction has no cure. I am to far gone my friends.

I am a bookaholic, a peddler of words, an addict.

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