A Survey of Bookish Habits

The lovely girls over at Bitches with Books created for themselves a survey about readerly habits.  Normally I loathe filling out surveys, but this one is about books, so I can’t not love it!

Coffee or tea with your book?  Coffee for sure, although now that it’s getting warm fruit tea is sounding delicious.

Do you like to read during a specific time of day?  I can read at literally any hour.  If I’m in the middle of a book, I’ll be reading it at every single spare moment.

What’s your favorite reading position?  I usually read curled up in the corner of a cushy chair or sofa, but I’ll also reading laying down or propped up in bed.  If only I could get someone to bring me breakfast while I’m at it…

Do you have a favorite place to read?  Not really…I can read anywhere — the car, in public, outdoors…  A soft chair is ideal, but I’ve sat at the dining table for hours after trying to do homework and picking up my book instead.

Do you read ahead or skip pages?  Not usually.  If I’m at a really exciting part, especially near the end of a chapter, I’ll glance at the next paragraph or page, but I really try not to.

Do you listen to music while reading?  Sometimes.  It doesn’t bother me, anyway.  I’m usually so wrapped up in the story that everything becomes background noise.

Can you read in crowds?  Absolutely.  Crowds make great background noise.  And then I don’t have to talk to people.

One book at a time or several at once?  One at a time.  I get so into books I usually can’t even think about picking up another one.  The only time I’ll read more than one is if the genres are vastly different, like a fiction novel and a theological commentary.  Otherwise plots can sometimes be too similar and I’ll get books mixed up.  I read books so quickly, though, I usually don’t even consider other books while I’m reading one.

Do you buy secondhand books?  Yes!

Bookmark, random piece of paper, or dog-ear?  Depends on the book.  If it’s mine, and the paper isn’t super nice, dog-ear.  If it’s someone else’s, random piece of paper because I can’t keep up with bookmarks.  If it’s a library book, and the pages aren’t really nice and shiny and new, I’m one of those people who will dog-ear them — but only very tinily!

Do you write, underline, or highlight in your books?  Not usually.  I do very occasionally in biographies, or if I’m planning to review a book I might underline a few quotes.  Always pencil!  Pen does not belong in books!

Do you take notes (not written in the book you’re reading)?  If it’s a book I’m reviewing, I might type a couple notes into my phone.  Primarily it’ll be page numbers where my quotes are.

See the film first or read to watch?  If the film is a book adaptation, I always, always read the book first.

Paperback or hardback?  I don’t have a preference really.  Paperback, if I had to choose, because they’re lighter and easier to hold for long periods of time.

Hardcopy (paperback/hardback) or audiobook or ebook?  Hardcopy all the way!  I have an ereader, but I really prefer things I can touch.  I like to feel the book’s weight and the pages and look at the cover periodically.  I also like being able to skip around much more easily.  And once I’m done with a book I own, it goes on my shelf, and I just love that.

Own it or borrow it?  I used to be a borrowing girl, but lately I’ve been on a book buying spree.  Books represent the owner, so I like having my bookshelf represent me.  But I also like to be cost-effective, so I usually only buy a book if I’ve already read it and know I want it, or if it’s been recommended by someone who knows my reading tastes, or it’s just really cheap and I know I will probably enjoy it.

Do you re-read?  Absolutely!  Either because I adore the book (often) or for lack of new material (not nearly as often).

Do you rate books based on the book’s objective merit or your subjective feelings about it?  I try to rate on both.  I’m a newish book blogger and I haven’t done very many reviews at this point, so I’m still learning and honing in on my specific style.  I do try to rate books on how well they achieve their objective, but often my ratings end up reflecting my feelings about the book more.

Character or plot focused?  I think character, because a well-developed character can save a mediocre plot, but a great plot can’t save a mediocre character.

Book trailers: yes or no?  I have not seen very many book trailers, so my opinion may be skewed.  I don’t much like the idea of them, because it feels like it would take away from the reader’s imagination.  This is part of the reason you should always read the book before seeing the movie.

Does it matter to you whether the author is male or female?  Nope!  Honestly, I usually don’t even pay attention.

How do you organize your bookshelves — alphabetically, by color, by size?  I always put series together in order, and group books by genre.

Would you still read a book even after coming across a spoiler?  Yes!  The only way you can get a full book experience is by reading the book.  Spoilers may give away plot points, but they will never give up all the nuances and great lines of a good book.

What’s your favorite way to find out about new books?  Recommendations from a friend or a blog I trust, or by browsing on my own.

Do you recommend books to people based on what you think they’ll enjoy or what you think they should read?  It depends on the person, honestly.  I try to recommend based on what the person would enjoy, but sometimes I recommend books because I loved them so much I think everyone should read them, even if the person isn’t into that type of book.  

Be honest, have you ever bought a book just for the cover?  I actually can’t think of a single time I’ve done that.  I do pick up books based on their cover or spine art, though.  Covers are what draw me in, and if a book has a great cover I’m much more likely to buy it.

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