Today I rediscovered this amazing place. I was driving by and I saw golden lettering above the doorway, words I vaguely recognized. BEMIDJI LIBRARY. Since I had a bit of time on my hands, I stopped. Walked in. Was hit by the gentle whoosh of warm air and the smell of books. The air was full of gentle sounds: fingers tapping computer keys, a printer spitting out pages, the quiet murmur of two people deep in discussion. This place has shelves and shelves of books and they let you borrow them for free.
I let my feet lead the way, and I found myself in the Young Adult section (of course!). I started to browse. That's when it all went downhill. I kept grabbing books. This was what it was like inside my head: Oh my gosh, I've been wanting to read that! Hey, they have this book? Need to take this one home. Wow, I've been looking for this sequel. It went on and on until I had two full bags of books. Then, at check out, something kind of neat happened. The librarian and I were chit-chatting and I mentioned my own book is on submission. She asked me to come speak to a group of teens this June. I said I would. Gulp. (Public speaking is not my strong point.)
Anyway, at one point I had exhausted my resources at that library. Now though, a few months later, I find there are so many new releases I haven't read, and that's just not like me. I've fallen behind on my reading for three reasons. One, I got so deep into my own writing that I didn't want to resurface long enough to read someone else's. Two, I think sometimes I forget how important reading is. Not only is it earth-shattering fun, but it's a huge tool for our writing. And three, it got into my head for some reason that I need to buy books I want to read. I know! How could I forget about the library? (Ashamed face.)
I love the library. It was like an old friend that I'd neglected. Take a trip to your libraries. It's a great feeling to come together after such a long time apart.