Not Talking About Books

Though the above might not exactly be what I have been doing for the last few weeks yet it is slightly how I have felt of late. I know if you have popped by the blog and seen the posts going up you might be thinking ‘what on earth is this chap talking about?’ There is however quite a big difference between typing about books and talking about them, now typing I have been doing lots of.

With the secrecy behind ‘The Green Carnation’ submissions for this year I have literally not talked to anyone about it. Nope, not even Novel Insights or my Gran and it’s quite weird. If books come up in conversation I either go shifty, really vague with lines like ‘oh I have just been reading masses of stuff, I wouldn’t want to bore you’ or simply have to change the subject because I know what I am like and I might just let something slip. I have of course been able to chatter online about books either here, like writing this or responding to comments and on other bloggers in their comments. And while I love it, it also isn’t the same as having a proper chin wag over a coffee, down the blower, in the pub, at book group (no disrespect to bloggers and the blogging world of course). It doesn’t quite scratch the itch.   

Neither does emailing and believe me there have been furious emails between all of the judges flying across the country (we worked out a whopping 32,000 words have been whizzing through the either catching up on where we are at and what our thoughts might be on this one and that one and so forth) but until dinner on Tuesday when we debate and decide on the longlist I wont have physically breathed a word, not even a hint, about any of the books that have come in for it.

In fact I noticed the other day that I haven’t done a post on incoming books for ages, in part because I haven’t asked for any for ages and also because most of what has come in are Green Carnation submissions. In fact maybe I will pop a secret post in below so you can have a look at anything that isn’t Green Carnation related that’s come in and we can have a chatter about those? In fact I most definitely should as some of you have sent me books and though I have thanked you by email I haven’t on here. Back to my original subject of chatting about books though! (Note – I have done a post on incomings if you fancy a snoop!)

It made me think of who the real “in the flesh” people I chat to most in the world about books are and weirdly I haven’t seen them for a catch up or spoken to them on the phone for ages. So members of book group (and Kim, Dom and Polly in particular who I see often out of it), Gran, Mum and my little sister Miriam I am sorry it’s not been avoidance honestly.

It has given me some time to think, and not in a bad way. I have been scheming and plotting some new bits and bobs for the blog and looking at how I review things (you may even see the odd slightly, and I mean slightly, negative review), which books I am missing out on and shouldn’t be and where my focus is and isn’t. All really positive stuff actually. Maybe now and again we need to be cut out of the book chattering world a little (and lost in the real world with some good books, some amazing books and some absolute duds – oh see, I nearly slipped right there) and focus on some other things and catch up with everything else?

It has been hard but good and it will get a little bit easier and a little bit better after next Wednesday; just don’t go asking me what my favourite is in the long list, ha!

So have there ever been times when you haven’t been able to talk about books? How did you cope? Is it just something you simply cannot imagine? Who are the people away from the internet and in the real world you instantly turn to and have a natter with about books and why?

P.S I hope no one thinks I am moaning about judging for The Green Carnation Prize, I’m not honest (its just made me think) and have already signed up for The Green Carnation 2011, which is going to be something quite special… mind you am not meant to be talking about that until December. Best shush again, oops.


Filed under Book Thoughts

19 responses to “Not Talking About Books

  1. Pingback: Lastest Incomings & Postal Problems « Savidge Reads

  2. At least you do have the other udges to e-mail, surely if you couldn’t you’d go a little mad?

    Its funny really because loads of people I know IRL read but they all read completely different genres so its rare to have conversations with them.

    My best friend onlys reads chick lit, friend at work reads celebraty autobiographies or vampire stuff (twilight etc) dad reads crime and mum reads fantasy and YA. Makes you realise really how often people do just stick to the same genres or authors.

  3. I loved Ellis’ Rules of Attraction but I somehow haven’t read his other ones. I must try MC Beaton…you keep raving about these books and I’m curious to try them.

  4. Now you mention it I can’t imagine not talking about books, I feel for you I truly do. I never consciously think of I must talk about books but one way or another it always gets around to them with certain people. I have different people I talk to about different types of books. The first is of course my good old mom always great to chat about fantasy. My dad is always on hand to talk about fantasy but darker fantasy he has a great collection of cult fantasy and horror books. My best mate Kayleigh is into the latest kind of literature and Jen from uni loves anything vampire related. I seem to be the only one who will try anything lol!

    • Well I havent fully had my lips sealed thanks to the judges, am bursting for the dinner and nattering then. Though I think its going to be quite a big debate.

      Interesting how many people are saying the people they know seem to stick to one or two types on genre.

  5. gaskella

    Unfortunately the person I talked with about books all the time is gone now, and the past few days I’ve been houseclearing and haven’t had the energy to blog of an evening. However she had some cracking books which are gradually making their way to Gaskell Towers!

    Can’t wait to hear about your longlist. Are you allowed to talk a little after that at all, or will it be back into purdah for the whittling down?

    • I will be able to talk a little bit more about them, I just won’t be saying which ones I love and which ones I might love less. At the moment I am still being vague as I have no clue what they could be.

  6. I think part of the reason I started blogging about books is that I didn’t really have that many people I talked to about books, only a select number of people (my dad, some of my friends and my sister). But everyone’s taste is so varied and mine didn’t fit much with everyone else’s. So I guess I’m used to not talking too much about books, so blogging abut them was a bit weird for me at first, especially since I’m not a member of any book group. I can’t wait for my nephews to get older so that I can start bombarding them with books I like.

    • I suddenly thought about that reason for blogging after I had done this post… isnt that always the way.

      I am quite lucky I think my friends and family are quite experimental fiction wise.

  7. bookgazing

    I second chasing bawas comment. I know a few people who I see often who read a lot and a couple who read certain genres, but the books we’ve read don’t very often overlap. I talk to my mum about books most, but we’ll always find something else to talk about if we couldn’t talk about them for a while 🙂

    And because I am a lot freakish and have issues, talking about books I really like is something I can only do in the flesh with people I know aren’t going to go all judgemental on me. My likes and dislikes in all kinds of entertainment are a huge part of my personality and sharing my thoughts only to meet with ‘it’s only a book’, or ‘fantasy is a bit weird’ just feel too much like rejection. So I tend not to bring books up unless I know someone is a big reader, just like I’d be unlikely to chat about music with somoene who sees songs as a bit of background noise.

    • Interesting that you feel about that with some of the genres and bringing up books. Thats why blogging is so perfect as you can find people who like the same things and have a chatter there.

  8. novelinsights

    I hope it’s not going to be deathly silence on Weds haha. It’s ok, I can bore you with my opinions. 🙂

    I can imagine it is pretty frustrating actually needing to keep schtum about books you’re reading!!

  9. I sometimes don’t talk about books.

    Because, I haven’t finished reading a big one.
    I haven’t felt like blogging.
    I am too busy off-line.

    That’s why I call my blog:
    Books and Other Stuff.

  10. I can cope with the greatest of ease! I talk to a number of “real” people about books, often like-minded colleagues in my SCR and a few very close friends when I’m with them. I’m also quite happy not to discuss what I’m reading with anyone and I wouldn’t be at all frustrated if that was reciprocated. I have extremely broad, though somewhat specialised in some respects, interests and you could as well ask me the same question with “geology” or “vintage fashion” or “claret” or a whole host of other things and you’d get the same answer.

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