Sunday, November 19, 2006

Horror Readers' Charter

I thought that people might be interested in this over at Monster Librarian: it's a Bill of Rights for genre fiction readers. I particularly like "You have the right to carry books in your baggage at all times," which pretty much sums up my whole accessorizing philosophy (hence the shoulder bag on my avatar). The Monster Librarian website is a reader development resource for horror novels; a pretty cool thing in itself but a good springboard for our embryonic online reading group, perhaps.

On the subject of horror novels, did anyone catch Stephen King on Radio 4's Desert Island Discs? Due to the evil intricacies of music licensing the 'listen again' feature isn't available, but it's repeated on Friday morning at 9 am. I thought he was an interesting choice and it was nice to hear Kirsty Young praising his writing abilities.

5 comments:

swlrir said...

This is great! : exactly what i've been telling readers for years.

I'm thinking of anglicising it and creating a poster : or sending it out with my Reading Group Christmas Card

michael said...

I think the first two points:

* You have the right never to apologize for your reading tastes
* You have the right to read anything you want

Are appropriate for any reading matter, regardless of genre.

On the subject of genre fiction: swlrir's in my SFX again... I'm running out of ways to say "congratulations"!

swlrir said...

Thanks, again, Michael! ...but my review for Leibowitz isn't flowing, and it's due tomorrow...


The whole thing; "About Reading" and "Bill of Rights": is a(General?) Reader's Charter with only a few small tweaks, I think.

I'll post my revision if I manage one.

Bibliothecary said...

I think a Reader's Charter is a fine idea and something we could use to promote what we do: I particularly liked the library version of the American Miranda Warning. I look forward to your tweaked Charter, swlrir!

swlrir said...

Here are two slightly tweaked statements


About Reading

Reading is done for one of two general purposes: information and pleasure.

If you are reading for pleasure, you get a chance to escape into a story that should entertain you, calm you, thrill you, or raise the hairs on the back of your neck.

Not every book is everyone's cup of tea. If after the first few chapters of the book you aren't interested in the story then it might be time to put the book down and find another.

You shouldn't feel guilty about putting a book down or not finishing it.

It doesn't matter if that book is on the Richard & Judy list or if everyone you know raves about it and thinks it is the best thing on the planet.

Your taste in reading is personal. If the book you have isn't interesting then put it down and find one that is.

People who stop reading often do so in their school years because they are made to read through books of little or no interest, which they are then tested on.

The end result is that reading becomes a chore and something to avoid.

Don't let school push you away from reading a book which you might enjoy.




Reader's Rights

• You have the right never to apologize for your reading tastes.
• You have the right to read anything you want.
• You have the right to read anywhere you want... in the bathtub, in the car, in the grocery store, in the garden, in the pub, or while walking the dog.
• You have the right to read in bed. Under the covers. With a torch.
• You have the right to carry books in your baggage at all times.
• You have the right to read in exotic settings.
• You have the right to move your lips when you read.
• You have the right to read the good parts out loud to your nearest and dearest.
• You have the right to refuse to read the good parts out loud to your nearest and dearest.
• You have the right to read and eat at the same time. (This right, however, does not include the right to use food as a bookmark when you are reading library books.)
• You have the right to read and make love at the same time.
What your partner’s reaction will be will vary from couple to couple.
(But-- depending on local bye-laws-- you may or may not have the right to ask your librarian for suggested books.)

• You have the right to read as many books as you want at the same time.
• You have the right to throw any book on the floor and jump up and down on it (provided that you paid for it first).
• You have the right to ignore critics in the press.
• More importantly, you have the right to ignore critics in your immediate family.
• You have the right to stop reading a book whenever you decide it's not worth the effort, or that you simply don't like it.
• You have the right to refuse to read any book anyone else picks out for you. Even if it's a birthday present. (This is associated with your right to refuse to wear any necktie or perfume you receive as a gift.)
• You have the right to skip all the boring parts.
• You have the right to read the last chapter first.
• You have the right to read the last chapter first and then put the book back on the shelf.
• You have the right to refuse to read any book where you don't like the picture of the author.
FINALLY, the Reader's most basic Civil Right:
• If you do not have a book of your own, a book will be provided for you by your public library.

Based on The Genre Reader's Bill of Rights See the original at http://monsterlibrarian.com/about_reading.htm