East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai

And then you buy books


Because let’s admit it: you are working on a full-time ghostwriting gig, you’re getting ideas for stories you don’t have the time to write, you keep spotting interesting open calls from high-profile magazines, all of this makes you supremely unhappy, you’re tired as hell… why not go and buy a stack of books you’ll never find the time to read?

And so yesterday, using an Amazon gift card that was about to expire, I went and got me a handful of new books, including a classic tome on Noir movies, David Abulafia’s massive The Great Sea, being a human history of the Mediterranean, and three fantasy novels. Oh, yes, and a pair of novellas. And I’ve added a few more books to my wish list.

And as I said, I do not know when I will find the time or energy to read all this stuff, but as all book lovers know, buying books is a completely different activity than reading them, and it carries its own reasons and positive effects.

In other news, the knitting yarn I ordered in January to try and spend February learning to knit has yet to appear – my beautiful, high quality knitting needles sit on the bookshelf and look at me with pity.
I have learned to juggle, poorly, but now that my wrist is aching I can’t practice.
And as we sit in the middle of the Red Zone, the number of cases is increasing, and the media are on a scaremongering campaign about vaccines – stuff like “woman dies under a bus, she had just got her COVID shot”.
Which in a way means I have a good hope of finding the time to read all these books, after all, when civilization finally collapses (and yes, I saw that Twilight Zone episode).

The fact that I always liked stories about worlds descending into madness did not mean I wished to live in one.
But there we are.

Author: Davide Mana

Paleontologist. By day, researcher, teacher and ecological statistics guru. By night, pulp fantasy author-publisher, translator and blogger. In the spare time, Orientalist Anonymous, guerilla cook.

3 thoughts on “And then you buy books

  1. I totally understand you. My “to read” pile keeps growing all the time.
    Two weeks ago I bought the first 4 books of the Culture series (Iain M. Banks).
    Lask week I bought the whole Memory, Sorrow, and Thorn series (Tad Williams) and yesterday evening the Riddle Master Trilogy (Patricia A. McKillip) and the first three books of the The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant, the Unbeliever series (Stephen R. Donaldson) and the first book of the Shadowmarch series (Tad Williams again).
    Will I ever be able to read them? I don’t know (I am currently translating Swan Song into Italian, which is huge, and I have 4 more books to translate before july).

    But they are there, waiting for me 🙂

    PS: I buy them used, so it’s not so expensive (around 3 to 6 € per book)


    • I used to buy used books, too.
      They are cheaper and have a special charm.
      These days, I buy ebooks, because they are often even cheaper,and there are no delivery delays or mishaps.
      YOur book haul is impressive (and I feel old, because I read most of those).


      • I found an online shop (based in Berlin) of used books whit tons of interesting books, at least, to me (Medieval building techniques, Medieval tiber frame building, and stuff like that). The I tought I might as well look for more entertaining stuff. I haven’t read them yet, so I felt the need to catch up 🙂
        I also read some ebooks, but not so much. I’m still not used to it.

        Liked by 1 person

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