Ever since I was a young girl, I’ve been a card-carrying, tiara-wearing,
of the written word. Though fiction is my favorite, I grew up reading
everything I could get my hands on. As an adult, I’m a member of two book
a full-to-capacity Kindle, and can’t find an inch to slip the slimmest of
on my bookshelves.
I’m guilty of staying up too late devouring final chapters. I’ve been known
to sit in
my driveway finishing the last few minutes of an audiobook. In the fall, my
accessory is an Alice in Wonderland scarf, setting off the bright red “I
books” pin on my briefcase.
Yes. I’m a book nerd, and proud of it.
Not so long ago, though, the term nerd was degrading and derogatory. Picture
thick glasses, pocket protectors, and high-water pants. Then, enter Steve
Gates, and Mark Zuckerberg. Cue the unlikely, awkward, but adorable novel
Augustus Waters in THE FAULT IN OUR STARSThe Fault in Our Stars, Park
Sheridan in ELEANOR &
and Kent McFuller in BEFORE I FALL.
We’ve come a long way, baby. And as we find ourselves mid-2015, can it be
universe is finally blessing the brainy? Are we, as a human race, moving
collective agreement that nerds are cool? I’ll answer with a resounding yes.
So, whether you secretly read novels every night on your iPhone or you
to the library since 6th grade, it’s time to join the movement. Here’s why
your inner book nerd can make you happier, smarter, and more creative.
1. You’ll meet other people
Join a bookclub. Or three. Join one in your neighborhood, across town, or
(Goodreads has a plethora, there are lists on MeetUp, or ask your local
It’s like getting a new, awesome family, of your own choosing, made up of
addicts and bibliophiles.
Not only will you meet new people, you’ll be gently forced out of your
Maybe you’ll try dystopian fiction, fantasy, or sci fi. Maybe you’ll realize
was no good reason why you shunned Ayn Rand since high school. Maybe this
you’ll actually finish Great Expectations.
The best part? The recommendations will start rolling in. You’ll hear, “You
read this book,” or “This new author is amazing.” And your new reading
tell you why. Listen closely. They know what’s they’re talking about.
2. You’ll have an instant escape
If you’ve been dreaming of Bali and want to visit Africa or the Greek Isles,
your library card. Just as Dr. Seuss promises, “Oh, the places you’ll go.”
gives you an escape anytime, anywhere.
Pick up a new book and allow the pages to whisk you away to a Tibetan
you up the winding steps of Machu Picchu, and give you a close up look at
Barrier Reef sea life.
Books, like mini-time machines, can also vault you back to Colonial America,
England, and Stalin’s Russia. Or fast-forward, and you’ll find yourself in
Roth’s post-apocalyptic Chicago, Wayward Pines, Idaho, or Aldus Huxley’s
World in London.
3. You’ll become open to new ideas.
Something wonderful happens when you lose yourself in the pages of a book.
Your mind comes alive, creativity flows, and your brain will generate fresh
You might begin to look at life, and all of the situations you’ve lived
different ways. You’ll understand people, their emotions, and behavior, a
At its best, reading engenders more empathy toward the human race. Books
and stigma fall away. After all, there’s so much more going on in the world
what’s outside our own windows. If we all read, maybe more people will start
hands instead of drawing lines in the sand.
4. You’ll improve your intellectual IQ
Yes, reading can make you smarter. Researchers studying readers using MRI
came to quite a few interesting conclusions. Not only does reading expand
vocabulary and improve your communication skills, it’s also an effective
booster and enhances your ability to focus.
Dr. Anne Cunningham, a University of Berkeley professor of psychology,
that readers have a greater general knowledge and spot patterns more quickly
non-readers, an analytical skill that keeps your mind sharp. Comic books and
children’s picture books don’t count, however, the books must be complex
challenge your brain.
5. You’ll learn
If you’re an avid reader, you can absorb quite a bit in novels about
relationships, behavior, culture, and of course, my favorite, how to fight
villains! All of that knowledge comes with a caveat—despite popular themes
guys always win, teams of misfits can outwit hardened criminals, etc.), the
If you like focusing on facts, research, and experimentation, you’ll find
psychology, sociology, and philosophy. Interested in politics and
books written about current events, as well as out autobiographies and
I’ve recently discovered a love of historical fiction, and have learned more
ever did in my high school history class about Hitler’s Germany, Mao’s
China, and the
6. You’ll set a good example
If you have children, nieces or nephews, you probably know that their little
everything. They memorize what you say and mimic what you do. This is your
set a great example.
I grew up in a household where reading was important and libraries were fun
visit on weekends. We didn’t watch television, and as a consequence, neither
children. We don’t subscribe to cable, and although Netflix and YouTube are
available, my boys rarely reach for the remote.
Let me put it this way. If being a book nerd is wrong, I don’t want to be
ahead; tell Bill Gates you don’t want to be happier, smarter, and more
Now, grab your tiara and meet me at the library.
Time to sound off; are you a book nerd? Leave a comment below and be
entered for a
chance to win a copy of CENTER OF GRAVITY.
After six years behind the anchor desk at two CBS affiliates, Laura
moved to the Alabama Gulf Coast to write full-time.
Her novels, known for their endearingly flawed characters, illuminate the
struggles that touch us all.
A native of Upstate New York, she now lives in Mobile, Alabama, with her two
Her debut novel, CENTER OF GRAVITY, will be published by
July 14, 2015.
Website | Twitter | Instagram |
Facebook | Blog
The truth could cost her everything.
Her whole life, Ava Carson has been sure of one thing: she doesn’t measure
up to her
mother’s expectations. So when Mitchell Carson sweeps into her life with his
son, the ready-made family seems like a dream come true. In the blink of an
she’s married, has a new baby, and life is wonderful.
Or is it?
When her picture-perfect marriage begins unraveling at the seams, Ava
herself she can fix it. It's temporary. It’s the stress. It’s Mitchell’s
history of loss.
If only Ava could believe her own excuses.
Mitchell is no longer the charming, thoughtful man she married. He grows
controlling by the day, revealing a violent jealous streak. His behavior is
recklessly erratic, and the unanswered questions about his past now hint at
far more sinister than Ava can stomach. Before she can fit the pieces
Mitchell files for divorce and demands full custody of their boys.
Fueled by fierce love for her children and aided by Graham Thomas, a new
town —Ava takes matters into her own hands, digging deep into the past. But
finding the truth be enough to beat Mitchell at his own game?
CENTER OF GRAVITY weaves a chilling tale, revealing the unfailing and
truth that things—and people—are not always what they seem.
22 comments posted.
Yes , I'm a book nerd and proud of it !!! LOL I love my books . I have read books all my life and still reading. I treat my books with tender love and care , always use a bookmark ,never turn a page down . I hate to get a used book that the pages have been used as a bookmark . Your book sounds like a very thrilling and chilling book . Thanks for this giveaway . I hope to be reading this soon.
(Joan Thrasher 10:29am July 13, 2015)
I am a total book nerd. I made my dad take me to the library on my 5th birthday so I could get my own library card.
(Pam Howell 12:53pm July 14, 2015)
I am the biggest book nerd ever! I can't even begin to tell you how many nights I
have spent awake reading an amazing book that I just couldn't put down! I love
to read. It is relaxing and so much more fun than watching TV.
(Lily Shah 12:32pm July 15, 2015)
The 7 overflowing bookshelves in my house definitely attest to how big of a book nerd I am!
(Kristine Murphy 3:20pm July 15, 2015)
I happily admit it! Yes, I love books, and have since I was a child. Was very sorry to hear that public TV did away with reading rainbow, a show I grew up with, and far better than sesame street IMO. I have been known to visit the library twice weekly, to read up to 3 books a day...I could never do without them.
(Cynthia Powers 6:11am July 16, 2015)
Yes, I'm a book nerd and have been every since I fell in love with reading as a child. I usually read several hours each night before going to sleep and sometimes have trouble putting an exciting one down.
(Anna Speed 1:24pm July 16, 2015)