Thursday, July 10, 2014

Literary Life: Favorite Passages

Book quotes are irresistible, right? You find that perfect sentence or that beautifully written paragraph and you know you have to keep it forever.

My books are a mess. I find myself using the little receipt that they print out for you as a bookmark and then I rip off tiny corners and leave them in certain pages. That way, I can go back, find the passages that really wowed me, and type them up on my computer.

What a mess, right?

I know that I could use those cool little tabs and I have done that in the past. But it turns out that those colorful little tabs are irresistible to a certain little boy and so they are just as likely to end up on a coloring page as stay in my book.

Then there is the group that believes in folding pages. A folded page means that you can always find the favorite part. But of course the downside is that your book will always open up to your favorite part, no matter what.

Last, but not least, we have our underliners and marginalia writers. Personally, this drives me crazy. I picked up a book from a used bookstore and didn't realize that the previous owner had both underlined and written notes. The underlining I can usually handle, especially when I have borrowed a book from someone I know. Then it's like a little insight into what they loved or found particularly important. But when I get a book that has notes written in the margins by a total stranger, it forces my reading in a certain direction.

Of course, you could just use another book to make your place...
source

And then, what do you do with the quotes? Do we just leave them underlined in our books? Do we lovingly write them into a beautiful notebook or keep a Word document on our computer?


So I want to know what you do. Confess your underlining ways here. Tell us of all of the pages you fold down. Let me know if you are a scrap of paper user too! Where do you keep all of those fantastic literary quotes?

14 comments:

  1. I really enjoyed this post, Lindsey! I am one who uses the receipt from the store or the return slip from the library when I am not on my kindle, which auto-saves my place in the book. Ironically I used to have a bookmark collection, but goodness knows where the heck it is now.
    About passages I love, I should type them up in a program and save them. Sometimes a sentence or passage is like pure poetry and really affects me. I have a thing for quotes-- I purchased a huge chunkster, Bartletts Quotations years ago just to browse through it.
    Have a good week.

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    1. I'm glad to see I have a fellow random scrap of paper user!

      I like having my favorite passages saved, but I feel like I should have a cooler way to store them than an impersonal document on my computer!!

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  2. I'm an underliner! And a dog-earer! I know, I know!

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    1. It's a no shame zone here, Andi! I was just curious about what everyone does.

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  3. I'm kind of lazy when it comes to book quotes... If I'm reading a book and really like a quote I'll take the time to go and find a piece of paper and write it down. In my mind, if I can't be bothered to do that simple task, then the quote isn't really worth. Terrible huh? Lazy, as I said! If it's meant to be, the quote and I will meet again some other time.

    Overall though, I write those quotes on scraps of paper really. I would like to get a little notebook or something like I've seen many others have, but perhaps I'm too lazy to do that too. Haha!

    Oh, and writing in my books is a big no no.

    Great topic!
    :-)
    Bits & Bobs

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    1. I find myself remembering to write down quotes for a few books and then I will forget for a while. It just seems to break up the flow of reading!

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  4. I love bookmarks, and I use those little plastic tabs and post it notes too, even for books I just love, not for review. If it's a book I know I'm keeping I will write in margins or underline or even highlight. I think about keeping a list of favorite lines or quotes, but I don't. I think it's good as long as you keep track of what you love :).

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    1. Indeed! I was so interested to see all of the ways that we keep track of the quotes we love. :)

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  5. I actually used to be able to remember the page numbers of my favorite passages long enough that I never had to mark up my book before I copied those quotes into one of my many notebooks...but those days are over. Now I usually turn down the corner the teeniest tiniest bit until I can get around to writing that particular quote down. Although sometimes, if it's my own book and there are too many passages I want to remember, I grab my pen and underline to my heart's content. After all, it's my book, and since I hardly ever loan out my books, my underlinings won't bother anyone else. :)

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    1. Wow! That is a handy talent for a reader. :)

      I can certainly see the appeal of writing in your book if you are sure you are going to love it forever. I guess the interesting thing is the way our views on books change. When I get books secondhand and they are really marked up, I wonder if people read them for a class and then got rid of them or if they really loved them at one time.

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  6. I use post-it notes because I don't like writing in my books (in case you want to see how ridiculous it can get: http://misfortuneofknowing.wordpress.com/2013/07/19/revisiting-the-soft-pages-of-harper-lees-to-kill-a-mockingbird/).* E-books make it much easier for me. I highlight a lot, and type up the lines that resonated with me the most.

    *I hope you don't mind the link!

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    1. I don't mind the link! E-readers do make it pretty easy to highlight, don't they??

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  7. I am a page folder. My friends tease me, but it just works out so well. And I don't have to worry about losing my bookmark! As for favorite passages, I don't really write anything down, but I do make my friends listen as I read them out loud.

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    1. That's true! Bookmarks seem to be in short supply around here these days. I think it might have something to with a certain little reader...

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