Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Six Days After the Vow

Six days ago I ripped up my Amazon credit card.  I vowed I would not buy books for ten months. I modified that vow yesterday.  I will not buy books unless I pay cash.  

My husband says it's cheating.

I don't know.  It's a pretty tough vow.  It means I have to walk into a bookstore and pay the cashier if I want a book. It means I have to look the cashier in the eye whether I choose Balzac's A Harlot High and Low or Victoria Holt's Mistress of Mellyn.   It means I cannot hide behind a credit card but must handle MONEY. 

The cashier at B&N was clearly shocked as he had never seen money in my Gilded Hand before.  It is a bit of a shock to have to go to the ATM.  The bus driver watched me struggle with quarters yesterday.  I clearly belong in a future world. 

The amazing thing is my mother never had a credit card.  I would never have had one, either, if I hadn't briefly traveled for a business.
At bookstores I'm tempted by displays.  Yesterday I perused Heather Gudenkauf's These Things Hidden, a novel displayed on a bookshelf in front of the balcony and a comfortable chair.  It seems to be an issue novel narrated by a young girl who has spent five years in prison for some undisclosed crime.  I didn't purchase it, though.  

I have enjoyed Michael Frayn's novels and plays, and his memoir, My Father's Fortune, looks like something I'd like to read.  I didn't buy it.  It's against the vow.

Michelle Moran's Madame Tussaud:  A Novel of the Revolution is fascinating.  I love wax sculptures and would like to know the story of the museum's origins.  Anyway, I like Moran's novels of ancient Egypt. But I have plenty of historical novels at home.

I really, really, really want to read Sofia Tolstoy's Diaries.  But not now.  I'm reading Antonia Fraser's Must You Go?

So, a few dollars spent on coffee and a snack and I'm ready to go home. Thing to Remember:  I delight as much in the browsing as in the buying. 


Buried In Print said...

::grin:: I'm glad you've found a way to cope with your "break up". It sounds nearly perfect.

BTW, there's a brief article about Annabel Lyon's process of writing the character of Alexander...not sure how interested you are in writing process, but I know the time-period is of interest to you: it's on CBC, here.

Oh, and I want to read Sofia's diaries too. But it's no weekend fling is it: definitely requires a commitment.

Frisbee said...

It looks like a fascinating anthology of writers' thoughts on writing. Annabel Lyons' connection of Plutarch's Alexander with contemporary vets' stories would certainly never have occurred to me: a reader, not a writer.

Yes, browsing is almost as good as buying. But how long can I keep this up???