To say that this year has been a challenge for many would be a huge understatement. Personally, professionally, even bookishly, this year has looked very different for many of us. 2020 has in particular, made me realize how many little things that bring me joy (like reading in a cafe, or attending in-person book events) I take for granted and in turn has made me appreciate them more. So, as we look to a fresh start in the new year, I wanted to take a pause and reflect on all the little moments that I am grateful for and that bring me, and I suspect many readers, many small moments of bookish joy. If you are a proud self-proclaimed book nerd this list is for you!
The smell of a brand new (or really old) book
There’s nothing quite like the smell of cracking open a new book and smelling the possibilities that await. On the flipside, the next best thing might be walking into an old library or used bookstore and smelling that old book smell. To quote bookworm extraordinaire Rory Gilmore: Nothing smells better than that!
When you are first on your library’s hold list for a book
I love my local library and wouldn’t change it for the world. But we’ve all felt the pain of a long library hold, or having all your holds come at the same time, or having your holds expire, or is that just me? But on the flipside there is definitely a moment of satisfaction when you’re first on the hold list. It’s the little things, you know?
When your favorite author announces a new book
There are your favorite authors and then there are your favorite authors, your ride-or-die, auto- buy, you-know-you’re-going-to-love-it-no-matter-what authors. There is nothing quite like the announcement of a new book by one of my favorite authors to make my day!
Becoming a regular at your local Independent bookstore
One of the things I definitely miss the most and that brings me endless bookish joy is browsing my local independent bookstores. Each Indie has its own charm but there’s nothing quite like finding your local independent bookstore that feels like home where you can spend hours browsing to your heart’s content.
Befriending a bookseller at your local indie
Yes, Independent bookstores boast thoughtful curation, events that tie to their local communities, and a unique sense of place, but I’ve often found that what makes them truly special are the people who work and frequent them. Asking for a recommendation and striking up a conversation about your favorite regency romance authors is definitely a huge plus.
Rearranging your shelves for the hundredth time
Do you prefer a TBR cart? TBR Shelf? Or a TBR pile of books in a corner? What about arranging your books by color, alphabetically, or do you go by the Dewey decimal system? Every time I think I’ve found the perfect organizational system, I am proven wrong a couple of months later when I’ve found an even better system which of course means rearranging things all over again, but somehow it never feels like a chore.
Finding a friend that is just as excited about a book as you are
There is nothing quite like meeting someone who is just as excited about a book as you are and who is willing to indulge and reciprocate your gushing about why this is the most perfect book ever in minute detail with plenty of squeeing and emojis: book friends are the best friends.
When you read a hyped book and it does not disappoint
I don’t know about you but when there is a lot of hype around a book that I want to read, it makes me want to read it even more but a small, contrarian part of me also worries that it may be overhyped and that I would have loved the book if my expectations hadn’t been so high. Every once in a while though, the hype is real, and when it is, it’s awesome.
Finding a new-to-you-author that you love and finding out they have an extensive backlist
Finding a new-to-you author whose books just speaks to you, and who you just can’t wait to read more from is the best bookish feeling ever. Finding out that the author has an extensive backlist that you can dive into and enjoy right away? Even better!
Receiving a new bookmark
I’ve come to realize that I love getting new bookmarks. A new bookmark always sparks joy at the possibility of the books it will . It doesn’t matter if it is a free paper bookmark from a bookstore, a DIY bookmark, or a fancy custom bookmark, I love them all. Will I end up still using the closest scrap of paper I can find as a bookmark? Probably, but still, I like to know I could use the bookmark if I wanted to.
Curling up with a book and a warm beverage
Best bookish feeling of all? A free afternoon of uninterrupted, quiet, reading time. Add a cozy blanket and a steaming cup of hot chocolate or coffee and you have a true bookish dream come true!
All of these things and more spark little moments of quiet bookish joy and are things that I am grateful for as a reader. What are you some bookish moments that bring you joy?