Janet Edwards tells us about Book Addictions

February 27, 2014 Author Feature, Giveaway, Guest Post 9

This is the Science Fiction young adult book you should be reading! When I read Earth Girl recently I was blown away by how much I loved this book and connected with the main character Jarra. So I’m happy to have Janet Edwards with us today to give us one of her confessions!

Enter to win a copy of EARTH GIRL below sponsored by the amazing folks at PYR!

Earth Girl

Read my review of Earth Girl

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My name is Janet Edwards and I have a book addiction.

I blame Father Christmas! He was definitely the one who started me on the road to ruin. The first books I owned were left in my room in a big red sack, and there was incontrovertible evidence that Father Christmas left them. The sack had his photo on it!

I’ve still got those books, because books enter my possession but they never leave. I know some people can bring themselves to take a book from their shelf and callously give it away to friends or charity shops, but I can’t. There’s the pain and anguish of deciding which book should go. There’s the guilt I suffer whenever I look at the gap on the shelf. Worst of all, on the rare occasions I’ve forced myself to get rid of a book, I’ve ended up wanting to re-read it a year later and had to buy another copy.

So for me a book isn’t just for Christmas, it’s for life. That wasn’t a problem when I was a child. The number of books on my bookcase increased, but very slowly. Father Christmas only came once a year, and I could only afford to buy a few books myself. Every week, I would visit the library and borrow three books, but those had to be returned.

As a teenager, I had a little more money. That meant rather more new books, and I discovered second-hand bookshops as well. There were the first warning signs of future problems, as the books in my room overflowed from the first bookcase to a second one.

Then I went to Oxford University. Now Oxford is a place generously supplied with bookshops. Blackwells alone had four floors of books, including the truly unbelievable underground expanse of the Norrington room, as well as several specialist overflow bookshops. I went past Blackwells, as well as two good second-hand bookshops, on my way to lectures. It was hardly surprising that my book collection soon overflowed the shelves of my college room, and was stored in several cardboard boxes.

After leaving Oxford, I rented a room in a shared house. It was furnished, but didn’t include any bookcases. In an episode of true book addict insanity, I went out and bought two very large, flat-packed bookcases with the vague idea of taking them home on the bus. It was only when they were handed over to me that I realized that a) I could only lift one at a time, b) no sane bus driver would let me on a bus with them, and c) they wouldn’t fit in a taxi.

At this point, I would like to thank the couple with the truck who came to my rescue, and ferried me and my bookcases back home. I don’t know their names, or anything about them, other than the fact they too were book addicts. They’d just bought six bookcases themselves!

A year later, my book collection married another book collection. There was a slightly dazed look on my husband’s face when he discovered the number of books I owned. He’d known about the ones in my room, but not the ones I’d left at my parents’ house. Still, we had a whole house, so there was no problem finding space for bookcases.

Well, there wasn’t for the first few years. After that, I found creative solutions, like the back to back bookcases making a room divider in the through lounge. Eventually, however, there just wasn’t space for more bookcases. The only answer was to get rid of some books, or move house.

Janet Edwards shots

So we moved house and bought new bookcases. The situation was back under control, but only for a while. The relentless tide of books flowing into the house continued until crunch point was reached. We couldn’t move again, so we absolutely had to get rid of some books. Unless, of course, we extended the house.

So we built an extension, adding three new rooms to the house. One of these rooms had wall to wall, floor to ceiling bookcases, with shelves deep enough for three rows of paperbacks on a single shelf, one row in front of the other. We called it the library, to distinguish it from the other room that was totally dedicated to bookcases, and the rooms that only held one or two bookcases. And that, we felt, should solve the book problem permanently, especially once we could get ebooks instead of physical books.

We were wrong of course. Ebooks didn’t help, because somehow we just ended up getting both the ebook and a physical copy as well. Not only are the library book shelves overflowing, I’ve entered a whole new phase of book addiction. I’m not just buying books now, I’ve become an author and I’m writing them myself! Earth Girl was published in the USA in March 2013, and Earth Star will be published in the USA in April 2014.

My name is Janet Edwards and I have a book addiction.

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Janet Edwards is the author of Earth Girl and Earth Star (Pyr). She grew up in prosaic England but also shared the lives of amazing people in fantastic worlds. Her guides were books written by authors, some still famous and some already forgotten. Those authors have hundreds of individual names, but they have one title in common. They were all Expert Dreamers. After growing bored with work involving tedious technical facts, Janet made a break for freedom through a magical wardrobe and is now training as an Apprentice Dreamer. She has a husband, a son, a lot of books, and an aversion to housework.

Earth Girl (Earth Girl #1)

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Tabitha (Pabkins)

When I'm in the zone I can flip book pages faster than the eye can see - screaming "More Input!" I'm a book, yarn, & art supply hoarding goblin who loves to draw, make toys and craft all sorts of creepy cute things. My current habit is to listen to audio books while I'm arting it up!
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9 Responses to “Janet Edwards tells us about Book Addictions”

  1. Mogsy

    What a great post and story that I’m sure all book lovers can relate to 😀

    Moving around so much during my college years was what finally made me break down and go almost 100% ebooks. Packing up and moving all those boxes of books just got way too backbreakingly out of hand! The good news is that now that I have my own place I’m back to buying physical books again 🙂
    Mogsy recently posted…Book Review: Star Wars: Honor Among Thieves by James S.A. CoreyMy Profile

    • Tabitha the Pabkins

      I can totally relate. I wish I could build on more space for a library. Though we are planning on doing a sun room – maybe I can convince him to line every bit of wall space with shelves. Doubt the man will go for it!

      Every time I moved I would always end up losing a few boxes of books. *cries in despair*

  2. Janet Edwards

    Ah yes, Mogsy, college years were a nightmare of packing and unpacking. I was living in college all through, and they made us clear our rooms at the end of each term so they could use the rooms for conventions. Pack, unpack, pack, unpack…

    And no, Nathan, nobody touches my Pratchett collection. They are my much read preciouses! In fact, that’s only a few of my Pratchett books. I took some off the shelf for the photo, so I could show the three rows of paperbacks one in front of the other.

    Janet Edwards
    Janet Edwards recently posted…Earth Flight UK and Commonwealth Cover Art and DetailsMy Profile

    • Tabitha the Pabkins

      And I sooo wanted to see your library madness! pish posh on construction for ruining the fun! (I know how that is my kitchen was undergoing remodel the past ten days…I was in TORMENT!

      My Pratchett books take up an entire two shelves – its madness I say! I might have to switch to ebook for him haha. Thanks so much for stopping by and visiting!

  3. Kristen H.

    Always behind! Missed the giveaway but here to say hello to Janet! Glad you became a book addict and from what I hear, an incredible writer. Cannot wait to read your books!
    Kristen H. recently posted…DNF Cronicles: AvalonMy Profile