Valentine’s Day: Love Letter to the Library

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Another childhood fantasy come true.

Something I wrote is going to be in my public library. My story, in the Hook, Line, and Sinker anthology. With my name on it.

I am absolutely giddy!

Let’s go back and get a little context for the geekiness, shall we? When I was a wee thing, my mother used to walk with me from our house, past a small cemetery to a little dirt side road where the bookmobile parked. The bus was green with rounded sides. I’d never been on a bus other than that one. The whoosh of those doors opening so we could walk up the steps scared me a little.

Children’s books were on the bottom shelves. I was allowed to choose three each time, carrying them home carefully in the rain so they wouldn’t get wet. Those books would carry me through the long, wet days of winters just outside Vancouver, until the bookmobile came again and I got to choose three more.

Once day, my mother said she had a surprise for me. Our municipality had built a library — an honest-to-gosh solid building that was filled to the brim with books. Entering it for the first time was like stepping into Camelot. Everything smelled new and papery. There was a section, a whole section, just for children. Filled with books.

I was dizzy with the glory of it. My mother had handed me the keys to the kingdom. I sat on the floor, sorting through my treasures. I discovered Encyclopedia Brown… ooh, that looked good! The pile started to grow. How on earth was I going to pick just three?

We went to the front desk so I could get my very own library card. The gravity of this moment was not lost on me. After dutifully answering all the librarian’s questions, I had one of my own. How many books was I allowed to take out?

She smiled. As many as I wanted.

I staggered out of the library, clutching a stack of books to my chest. That night, I proudly showed my bounty to my dad. “Are you really going to read all those?” he asked.

Yes, I read all of them. Now I have something to add to another reader’s stack of books.

It doesn’t get any better than this.

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