3 Reasons Why I Fear My Book-Nerdness Has Finally Become Straight Up Neurosis

Or, 3 Reasons Why I’m Surprised I Can Function Socially (Well, Sort of Function)

1. Constant allusiveness.

Last week during a bleary-eyed walk to the bathroom in the middle of the night, I thought “Gah, this sucks, I feel like Gandalf finding a path through the mines of Moria.” It didn’t help that I caught sight of Piglet lurking in the shadows like a balrog.


Anyway, see what this means? I’m not even having original thoughts any more. My inner monologue is now just an unending stream of book excerpts—and currently it seems to rely heavily on a mixture of Hamlet, P.G. Wodehouse novels, and exclamatory expressions used by Nero Wolfe (pfui!).

2. Obsession not only with books but also with lists of books.

I recently spent an entire afternoon reorganizing my main Goodreads list into a number of more granular lists dedicated to various categories, in order to better analyze my reading habits and preferences. Here are some pie charts demonstrating the results (predilection for pie charts is another daily struggle).

BY ERA: I omitted a large chunk of classic literature before the 1800s, but that category would be almost exclusively things I read for high school and college classes, and I’m just trying to track my preferences in leisure reading.
BY GENRE: There is some overlap between children/young adult and the other genres, but I decided that the CYA designation is primary and the others secondary, especially considering the aforementioned purpose of this analysis. 

Here’s a bar graph illustrating how little you care.

Levels of Interest

According to my calculations, I’m higher on the list than televised golf tournaments. But just barely.

3. Severe withdrawals.

I invariably experience a period of malaise after reading a truly good novel, during which I mope and fret and dismiss all other books as weary, stale, flat, and unprofitable. This condition is even more acute following completion of a series. When I finished Deathly Hallows, for instance, I sank into despondence so deep that it took weeks before I had the heart to pick up another book, and it was a challenge just to keep my hair brushed and eat something besides peanut-butter toast. You know there’s something wrong when your reading habits directly result in the consumption of three jars of Skippy Natural.

Omg DELICIOUS, even when you’re not so depressed that you maunder about in a bathrobe drinking milk from the jug and making pathetic attempts to cast Cheering Charms.

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7 thoughts on “3 Reasons Why I Fear My Book-Nerdness Has Finally Become Straight Up Neurosis

  1. Cassie says:

    I really love this. LOVE IT. I think we all have strange bookish moments and I feel the same way sometimes. I’m like, “Did I just compare my life to THAT?” However, you said it in a hilarious way.

    • autumnlists says:

      I know. It’s kind of worrisome but also kind of great to have the collective memories of dozens of book characters. At least, my husband finds it worrisome when I say things like, “I remember when Laura and Mary got to play with a pig’s-bladder-balloon on hog butchering day.” I just find it great.

  2. You. are. just. awesome. The. end.

    • autumnlists says:

      Awww, spanks, as you say, but if we got to hang out more I’m sure you’d quickly tire of all the Hamlet jokes. Go Top Mommy Blog, btw! I’ve been clickety clicking every day.

  3. I agree wholeheartedly with everything you said. I’m sure that we’re full-on neurotic, but at least we’re not alone. Also, re: pig bladders — my sister and I mention that scene and the one in which they make candy of maple syrup in the snow on a fairly regular basis. We once tried, and failed, to make our own candy. I’m sure that if we’d had access to a pig bladder, we’d have tried that, too.

    • autumnlists says:

      Oh I KNOW, I remember that whole book so well and get so excited when things remind me of it. There was a maple syrup festival recently which of course made me reel off the whole sugar snow event to Tyler, including the candy part, and he said “Uh huh” but what he really meant was “Buhhhh please stop bringing up weird pioneer things all the time.” And also remember Laura’s corncob doll? Oh man. I need to read those again.

  4. […] My bike gets me out in the sunshine. We booknerds have a tendency to retreat into the dark recesses of our homes and develop nocturnal habits. I used […]


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