A new way to be nosy about how other people read!

Why am I obsessed with finding out other people’s reading habits and other reading activity particulars? I love this meme.

Do you snack while you read? If so, favorite reading snack?

I love to snack, but I hate getting the book I’m reading dirty. As a result, I’ll have the book propped up (so that crumbs won’t get stuck in it) and away from anything that splashes or leaves gross stains. I’m pretty good at it now. Reading and eating are two things that I love to do at the same time! Oh wait, I didn’t really answer the question. My favourite reading snack: apples and cheese. (I’ve become a careful eater – no apple juice spittle anymore).

Do you tend to mark your books as you read, or does the idea of writing in books horrify you?

I’m guilty! But I only do it for books I’m reading for Eng Lit. For example, all my copies of the Shakespeare plays are completely scribbled up. BUT, I DO NOT mark books otherwise. It distracts me if I ever want to read the book again. Now that I think of it though, it is kind of neat when you pick up a random library book and there, in some discrete corner of the book, is a little thoughtful comment… but, if the whole book is riddled with it, thoughtful becomes opinionated.

How do you keep your place while reading a book? Bookmark? Dog-ears?

I use tissue paper! I use one square of toilet paper. Yup. I have tons of bookmarks but I never use them. Instead, I covet them in my bookmark baggie (that’s pinned up on the wall by my bed, ready for me to use one). I don’t dog ear. The pages will get all bent and uneven, and, though I love that look for used books that I pick up, I don’t do it to my new, in-pristine-condition books.

Laying the book flat open?

Yup. Also been guilty of propping it up against things (hey, when you’re eating cereal in the morning, and the table’s full of crumbs, it’s nice to have something like cereal boxes or water bottles to prop it up). I’m lazy but obsessive for reading comforts.

Fiction, Non-fiction, or both?

I prefer Fiction. I do love reading biographies/autobiographies but I live in fiction land primarily.

Hard copy or audiobooks?

I’ve been a hard copy person for ages, until recently, when I listened to John Lenahan read his book Shadowmagic. It was such a great experience that I’ll try another audio book one day.

Are you a person who tends to read to the end of chapters, or are you able to put a book down at any point?

I read until there’s a natural break. Cliff-hangers result in extra accidents during the day. I’m too busy thinking about “What’s going to happen?” and I don’t watch where I put my feet. (Okay, maybe I’m exaggerating)

If you come across an unfamiliar word, do you stop to look it up right away?

I’m a nerd. Yes I do. I used to even write out a whole list of new words, and I was getting pretty good at using them too. I don’t do it as often these days, but if a word’s meaning is particularly obscured, I’m forced to look it up. I’ve once had an experience of reading an entire passage and thinking I understood what was going on, but when I looked up one or two words, I realize I had the mood of that scene completely wrong!

What are you currently reading?

Demon’s Lexicon. I’m feeling like an ornery swordfighter who is angry at his brother and two annoying people who keep showing up for help.

Check out the first two lines: “The pipe under the sink was leaking again. It wouldn’t have been so bad, except that Nick kept his favourite sword under the sink.” This makes me LOVE urban fantasy. The contrast in the line made me instantly react with a grin and launch into obsessive reading (as a result, I’m halfway through the book by the end of my first day of reading it).

What is the last book you bought?

Uh, I bought a lot. Technically though, it was a textbook for chemistry.

Are you the type of person that only reads one book at a time or can you read more than one at a time?

I can and I do. But if it’s a deeply riveting book, I don’t. Honest admittance: I only read two books at a time if either of them aren’t that compelling to me at the moment. If I get more into one of the books I’ll put the other aside for the time being.

Do you have a favorite time of day and/or place to read?

I like to read in the afternoon. I like to read right before or during lunchtime. My favourite place to read is in the kitchen. Actually, since I live at dorm right now, I like to read in my room. I have an excellent view of trees and mountains and some ocean bits here and there. It’s great. And I lay back and prop my feet over the heater, and lay my head on the cushiony part of my study chair and just read for hours. Then I get back pain. But it’s blissful for a few hours.

Do you prefer series books or stand alone books?

Stand alones. Some series NEVER end. I like to have endings. I like to see, at least, that the author has planned something epic or great for an ending and isn’t just dragging things on because of fans or money. When the story feels like it should end, end it, or else it gets ruined.

Is there a specific book or author that you find yourself recommending over and over?

So far I know I’ve mentioned Garth Nix’s Old Kingdom Trilogy and Shade’s Children more than a few times. I cried for both works. I think the stories are just so great. I love all the characters; I love their crazy, difficult lives and their horrifying, dangerous worlds.

How do you organize your books? (By genre, title, author’s last name, etc.?)

Random! I like to tuck books into random places and then run into them again and reminisce about how great they were. I do have a to be read shelf/pile. But that’s about the only order I have.



  1. I so agree about series – I always want to find a series that I love, because it’s fun when you’ve loved a book and then there are several more much like it for you to read. But it’s way too often the case that the author just keeps writing more and more books, rather than bringing the series to a satisfying conclusion.

  2. Interesting meme. I noticed we have many common habits as for reading. I’d like to borrow it for my blog, but it depends on how much spare time I have these days. Work is “overshadowing” blogging, unfortunately. Cheers!

  3. Nice meme! Here are my answers.
    1. Yes, I do. My favorite snacks are less-mess foods such as popcorn and granola bars.
    2. No way! I’m so into books that I sort of think of them as people; Would you want someone scribbling all over you? Once I had to underline some words in a poem for school, but I scrubbed out the marks as soon as I could.
    3. Bookmarks. I have quite a hoard of freeby, handmade, and store-bought bookmarks tuck into a spare corner of my book shelves. I admit I have many more than I really need, but I love picking out just the right one for each read!
    4. I honestly try not to, but I’m guilty of doing that to my poor books when the need to get up is so urgent that I don’t have time to put in a bookmark. For me, an “urgent need” can be anything from my popcorn being ready to one of my pet chickens catching on fire. 🙂
    5. Fiction, definately, though I’ve read a few non-fictions that I enjoyed.
    6. I prefer hard copies, but now that I think about it, I’ve never really listened to an audiobook in full. I’ll need to do that sometime.
    7. I always read to a marked break, or the end of a chapter if possible. On rare occasions I’ll stop immediately, usually if one of the “urgent needs” mentioned in question 4 occurs. In elementary school (ah, the good old days!), I used to get angry at my teacher if she stopped us reading in the middle of a section.
    8. Nope. Often times I’ll completely ignore new vocabulary, which is a habit I’m not proud of.Sometimes I’ll make a note of something extremely obscure.
    9. 100 Cupboards by N. D. Wilson. So far it’s an excellent book, but I haven’t had time to read much.
    10. Since i almost always buy books in groups of three or four, here’s my most recent batch: 100 Cupboards by N. D. Wilson, Phillipa Fisher’s Fairy Godsister by Liz Kessler, and Peter and the Starcatchers by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson. All fantasy, all read except for 100 Cupboards.
    11. Funnily enough, I used to read as many as six books at a time! I suppose my mind was able to keep track of things better. Now as my schedule and life in general become more and more frenzied, I’m becoming more and more scatterbrained, and all I can handle is perhaps one novel and one short story or poetry anthology.
    12. I like to read at night, after all mundane things are behind me and only dreams lay ahead. That way, since my mind is easily influenced, I can have dreams about the book I’m reading! Unfortunately, I’m often so tired that Idrift off immediately after my head hits the pillow, so I have to squeeze in my reading time when I can in the afternoon. AS for places to read, anything goes.
    13. I don’t hold a preference at all.
    14. Hmmm. Probably the one I mention over and over and over would be the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series by Rick Riordan, and I like to spread the word about lesser known authors whose books I enjoyed. I also love letting all of my friends borrow my copy of the Goose Girl by Shannon Hale. I’m not exactly sure why I bother, as it always comes back twice as beat up as it was before…
    15. I’m very specific about it, and like my books pristine, just like that crabby old librarian who used to well at you when you were eight years old. I organize the books my genre, then within that by author’s last name. While my non-fiction section is left as a whole, my fiction section is divided into fantasy, realistic fiction, historical fiction, classics, humor and comices, and poetry. Like I said, that crabby old librarian.

  4. I need to start looking up unknown words again…I’ve become far too lazy about that. I also have mixed feelings about series at best, yet I seem to keep reading them anyway :S

  5. Thanks for the kind words about Shadowmagic. The podcast is still available but for those of you who want something to hold – Shadowmagic has been published in paperback by Harper Collins and is available on Amazon.

    Thanks again and nice blog.

    John Lenahan

  6. Aimee – I’ll totally check to see if you did…. tomorrow 😛
    Jenny – I find that I like books that are more than stand-alone but less than series… in other words, a trilogy or duology, perhaps. There are enough books in those to satisfy your every craving for that world or character and not exhaust all creativity and freshness out of the story by dragging on too long. An example of a series that I think should be ending is Terry Goodkind’s Sword of Truth series. I was never a fan anyway, but the fact that there are still books pumping out… I can’t imagine! They’re all the same to me now 😦
    Chandra – Thank you! Yes, go ahead and do as you like with this meme! The actual hosts are the folks at the Book Bloggers Appreciation Website (click the picture at the end of the meme to link to their webpage).
    Maria Grazia – Haha yeah, work and school are overwhelming me. In fact, at the moment, I’m supposed to be working on a paper and a lab project, but see what I’m doing? Go ahead and meme-it-up!
    Allegra – For 2) I totally used to do that too! But, sometimes, I come across something really interesting, like a personal comment or reflection from some long lost reader. Oh no! How did you pet chicken catch on fire (or are you just joking :P)? Reading at night… yes, that is quite enjoyable. I need to find a good reading position though, because I seem to get all sorts of strange backpains and elbow pains from reading on my bed. I used to organize by genre or author’s last name, too. But, then things kept getting moved around and well, as a result – everything’s now random!
    Nymeth – It’s so strange. Some words, I’ll look up and try to remember but the next time it pops up I’ll have forgotten their meaning already and have to look it up again. Other words I’ll ony encounter once, and I’ll remember what it means for… well, for a long time. Like, ‘opprobrium’ which I got from chapter 1 of Jane Eyre … I remember that day exactly. So strange how my memory works.
    John Lenahan – Oh how neat! I will definitely be looking out for it! Thanks for dropping by again!

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