oh you would punch me if you saw my copies of Harry Potter. After the 3rd book, I learned to buy two copies of each at each midnight premier. I’d have one hard bound first edition copy to keep nice and pristine and lovely, and another copy I can drag around everywhere, bend pages, high light, and write notes in. I love those books so much.
As far as I’m concerned, a book that you cannot highlight, write in, or dogear, use too-thick a bookmark in or press flowers in the back cover of, stuff in an over-full backpack or read while eating, is equivalent to a doll you cannot take out of the box. Nice as a status symbol, if you’re into that sort of thing. Maybe valuable enough that it should be carefully preserved for future generations to have similarly policed access to it. But it’s not being used for the kind of personal enjoyment I think of when I think book.
I’m afraid I have to respectfully disagree. While yes, I have dragged around, thrown around, bent, ripped (accidentally), used too thick a bookmark in, shoved in an overfull backpack, read while eating, and generally abused many a book in my lifetime, and I do consider that part of giving it life, I draw the line at taking one’s own pen/highlighter to the pages themselves. If you feel like something is noteworthy, write it down in your own notebook. I guarantee if you’re highlighting from a series and you want that particular quote, it would be ten times easier to have a notebook full of your favourite quotes for that series. And as for cheeky margin comments like the above? It’s not funny. It’s not cute. It’s something that, the next time you pick up the book, you’re probably going to erase. It’s adding your own words to something that you supposedly enjoy so much, and imo it undermines the words already on the page.
I apply this philosophy even to the most boring textbooks, as well. If I want to remember something, I take notes in a notebook. And then scribble all over the margins, and highlight, dog ear, what have you. I write down page numbers so I don’t forget, and if I have to go back for more info then I open the book again.
I enjoy books and I use books by reading them, not writing in them.
Dude. When I was in music school, my music history class featured a lecture on the history of chant and documents from monasteries that had survived from the early Medieval period through to today; and I will never forget this because my initial thought was, “DUDE, THIS IS JUST LIKE FANDOM.”
Basically, monks used to write irreverent notes in the margins of documents while they transcribed them. Sometimes these would be arguments/disagreements with the subject they were working on, like informal footnotes/editorial notes; but sometimes they’d just be totally off-topic, even jokes and monastery gossip addressed to other monks working on the project. Like the equivalent of medieval note-passing-in-the-sanctuary.
So there are all these PRISTINE ORIGINAL TRANSCRIPTS of Gregorian chants and other priceless historical artifacts that basically served as the 10th-century equivalent of a sharpie meeting a blank bathroom stall wall.
Never, ever apologize for the urge to break out the highlighter and write all over your text. :D
One word: marginalia.