Confession time: I'm a writer who rarely buys books. I blame/thank Marie Kondo, who helped me wheedle down a staggering library — I gave away forty boxes — to little more than one reasonable shelf. Ever since going through the purge, I've been pretty hesitant to slide back into my old ways. Fortunately, I'm a writer who writes about books, so sometimes people send me books, and other times I use one my local libraries, and, okay, other times I bite the bullet and splurge. (Truthfully, though, I try to only buy once I've given away titles that no longer have a place on my shelf.)
If you're at all like me, then, you know buying a new book can feel like kind of a big deal. It's so pristine, so new, so yours. It's both investment and obligation — neither bad things, really — and for that reason, it seems worth considering. After all, why buy a new book when you can save a few bucks and buy a used book? (Or save a few more bucks and hit up your library.)
As it turns out, plenty of situations merit splurging on that new, pristine, uncracked spine. And thank goodness. No matter how tidy my apartment gets, I still feel the most joy when I'm wandering around the bookstore.
You know you should buy a new book...
1When It's Pay Day
Because you're spending your money on what that's more important than your reading life?
2When You're Gift Shopping
Unless you're splurging on an autographed first edition for a diehard bibliophile, avoid your friends and loved ones thinking you just wrapped up something from your shelf by making sure that dust jacket's brand spanking new and uncreased.
3When You're A Super Fan
Which means you'll also probably buy the book in both hardcover and paperback iterations... and that's fine. Totally fine.
4When You Know That Book's Gonna See Some Spills
And you want to make sure those spills are yours. (I'm talking about cooking, people, geez!)
5When You're A Germaphobe
Well, now that we're all thinking about bodily fluids ...
6When You Want To Mark The Heck Out Of That Book
Are you reading this book for school or study? Do you consider yourself lethal with a ballpoint or a highlighter? Probably, you want a fresh copy to do your worst.
7When You're At The Airport And You Packed Horribly
What better excuse is there to buy something shiny and new that feels like a splurge? #TreatYoself.
8When You're In Another Country
Finding books in English (if that's your limitation, like it is mine) that aren't by William Shakespeare can be tricky enough. No need to try to go all secondhand when abroad!
9When You're Supporting A Writer Friend
It's just good manners!