As is a common theme us book-lovin, bag-totin, coffee-drinkin novel lovers don’t always do so well with social interaction. (raises hand in background).
So from one bookworm to another, here are my tips for interacting with other people, booklover style.
Put your hands in the air and step away from the book. Too often my nose is scrunched in between either inked pages or kindle pages, and I forget that the worlds I’m reading about were all written by people, and that I need to look up from the book to be able to meet other people and friends. As my Bop (that’s my grandma) likes to say, “You can’t make the basket if you never take the shot.” Well, she says her version of it which usually includes gardening, sewing, Bible, and reading references mixed into one, and is more like a longer version of, “Sweetie, if you never try nothing you can’t do nothing”, but if I put her full version we could be here awhile. So, take the shot! Or, in this case, look up from that book 🙂
Ask about other people (and not just so you can go back to reading ;D). As a book lover myself I’m super inclined to talk BOOKS BOOKS BOOKS. I’m guilty (heh) of going on hour long rants about my new favorite book series, or the new book I’m writing, or this one book that I didn’t like…. and generally bookish stuff that other people think is boringish stuff. Sadly (shakes head at uncultured brethren). This tip is one every adult I’ve asked the question, “Help me please, what do I talk about?” has said. People like to talk about themselves. And the more interested you are in them the more interesting you become to them. Cool trick, right? Oh yeah, virtual high-five man.
Affirm other people for what they do. Since we’re so used to being in bookland where thoughts and feelings are expressed easily between characters (unless you’re Maxon and America) it can be hard to remember to thumbs up the people around you every once in a while.
That smile that you send another girls way, that compliment you give the cashier at Kroger, and even that disposable toothbrush you lend a girl in the Walmart bathroom because she needed one (that may or may not have happened), are great ways to show you care, and to shine light for God too during the Christmas season. Don’t forget to tell people you appreciate them just as much as you appreciate your books.
Force yourself out of your comfort zone. My comfort zone is curled up on my bed with coffee in one hand and a brand new wonderful book in the other. But forcing yourself to go to an event (EEEP events yarg) is the best way to make lasting friendships. People who do fun stuff together have more to talk about, and want to do more with the other person. Shared experience = the best way to friend’s heart. Or cookies. Cookies are a good way to a friend’s heart too.
Go with the flow. People are strange, irrational, crazy beings who sometimes do wacky or unintentional things. Since there is no backspace button for the mistakes in life (ahhh, the wonderful world of writing- thank you computers!) you have to go with the flow more often than not. So make like a duck and let it roll off your back :D. Accepting people with all their quirks and habits and favorite books you don’t understand but read anyways is what makes you a friend. 🙂 So go out there and be a friend. Even if they are riding a unicycle dressed as a bacon duct taped kangaroo.
Thanks and lots of hugs!
Love lots. Write bunches. Smile big.