These past couple of weeks I’ve really been trying and watching more booktube videos and more importantly (to me, at least) watch smaller booktubers. And by broadening my horizon on booktube I came across a bunch of videos about defacing books and I was fascinated by it! The idea of taking your favorite book and making it your own to that extend really got me thinking!
In the past, while reading a book I would never mark favorite scenes or dialogue in any kind of way. My oldest books on my shelves are so empty and don’t show any signs of what I’ve loved about them. And looking at them now, I’m really sad about it. I want to know which scenes got me excited! I want to know where the author did great with their writing! I want to see scenes with my ships that I really enjoyed!
I slowly moved towards using tabs in my books to mark scenes, which surprisingly took me quite a while to get to! I had this idea that my books had to be in a like-new condition at all times. Which is ridiculous to me now! And from using tabs I slowly moved to writing on my tabs which was quite the step for me too! I mean, I obviously wasn’t writing on the pages of my book but still.
While I was recently re-reading my copy of A Court Of Mist And Fury I was also looking through my updates from my first read through and I found this update:
And I kind of had to laugh at my past self! If you look through any of the books I have read this year, you will find that I have been using highlighters and other pens like no one’s business! I love flipping through my books and being able to see all those colors!
But I am still not 100% comfortable writing in my books – or maybe it’s not all of my books. I remember feeling a bit uncomfortable when I first wrote into my brand new copy of A Darker Shade Of Magic. I had highlighted things at that point already, but writing something down felt different. And I didn’t end up writing much down in it.
My copy of ACOMAF is a different story entirely. I have a ton of highlighted scenes, I have even more tabs and I have written a good deal of notes on the margins and I honestly love that book in its current state so much! I had actually underlined a handful of sentences during my first read through and it was fun coming across those scenes and realizing that I still loved them as much as the first time around!
I do feel like I still have quite a long way to go in terms of annotating books and finding a system that works for me and figuring out a way that would allow me to come back to a book months or years down the line and add more annotation or highlight scenes differently. I find it fascinating when people can clearly say ‘These highlighted scenes are from my first read through. And these scenes are from my second/third/etc read through!’. It gives you this interesting insight into what you loved about a story at a different point in your life!
How do you guys feel about writing in your books? Or annotating in general? Do you use any methods to highlight scenes that stood out to you? Let’s discuss in the comments!