Saturday, April 01, 2006

So, you think you love books? Well, if you say you love books, then I am sure you do, but how can you transform your love of books into ways to explore how you might spend the rest of your life studying, admiring and consuming them? I mean even a book critic does get paid to simply read books. So, what are you going to do with your passion?

  1. Write a review for the school newspaper. School newspapers often do not require that you be a full time staff writer to submit an article. Letters to the editor are also usually acceptable. Or write reviews on You can help fellow shoppers and if you amass enough reviews, you become a top review with all of its privileges.
  2. Maintain a list of books to read. Cross off and add to. I keep my list on my web site so that I can access the list from anywhere and keep track of what I have read by using the strikethrough tag.
  3. Aid your reading comprehension by expanding your vocabulary. Sign up for Merriam-Webster's word of the day email. Or buy one of those word a day calendars. Are you a total etymology whore, always referencing the etymology of words during conversation?
  4. Keep 5-10 of your favorite books in your dorm room. They will cheer you up when you are down, and make you feel at home when you are far away. They also can serve as paper topics or beginning points for reflection on a topic. I would flip through them and remember literary devices their authors used. I was given this advice by a college survival book, and it helped me out so much. My books reminded me of how far I had come.
  5. Check out the Purchasing Groups information maintained by See what students from around the country are reading, listening to and watching. You can also see what persons from different companies are buying.
  6. Start a reading group among your friends. Read a book per month or every other month. Get together and have dinner together and discuss the book. Don't make it directed or scholarly; just have fun.
  7. Give away your books after you read them. This is a great incentive to finish your books. You gain a sense of accomplishment and giving when you share your stuff with others.
  8. Hold a Poetry Reading. Ask everyone to bring their favorite poem or a new found favorite to read. Don't forget to advertise. You might want to create a theme for the poetry to be read: war, love, nature or pick poetry from an era or by a particular author. If friends are reading their own poetry, you might want to set out some guidelines concerning
  9. Start a Newspaper or Literary Magazine. Being a part of the inaugural season of my school's independent newspaper was a great experience. I began by working on the layout for the newspaper, and for the second edition I actually wrote two articles for the paper. Is there a faction of your school whose voice is not being heard? Contact a local printer and get organized.
  10. Read an amazing book and the author is still alive? Write her/him with questions and comments. No harm done if he/she does not reply. Writing accolades and criticisms strengthen your ability to think as well as write.


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