I love words. I’d love to say that I always have but I’m not sure that’s true. But I’ve always enjoyed writing and putting words together. I always got carried away. I remember once in my school days writing an essay that was 3x the length of my friends’ essay. I just couldn’t stop. Then there was the time at university when I wrote a piece of coursework that was double the word count. It was an absolute bitch having to edit that thing down. It’s entirely possible that some of it didn’t even make sense in the end because I couldn’t cut enough words out. I just bloody love words. When I used to work in a kitchen and a waitress needed the chicken adding to their Caesar salad, I’d make then ask for a “Caesar pleaser”. Just cause I love a rhyme. The best part of my new job is being paid to write stuff. I’m super annoying though. I’ll rewrite everything my colleagues write because it doesn’t sound good enough to me. I’m sure they all hate me. But, at the same time, they’ve spent all of today trying to tell me that it should be “kids shirts” and not “kids’ shirts”. So, fuck ’em. Instead, let’s focus on those beautiful bookish words. Here are some of my favourites.
Meaning: Acquiring reading materials but letting them pile up in one’s home without reading them.
A classic that we all know and love but this is the perfect word for most bookish people. How many of us have piles of books all over our house that we don’t know what to do with. My bookshelves are two rows deep and straining under the weight. I have books by my bed and books in my bed. And, to top it all off, I have books in my basket on multiple websites. I have a problem.
Meaning: A person who reads in bed.
Did we need a word for this? Doubtful. Do I love that it exists? Yes. If you’re ever stuck trying to think of what to say to people you meet at a party then just tell them you’re a librocubicularist. It’ll start a conversation and let them know what you’re all about.
Meaning: One who “buries” books, typically by hoarding them unread, hiding them, locking them away, or otherwise shutting them up and keeping them from use.
I buy a lot of books. Yes, I also read plenty of them but I’m something of a book hoarder. It’s always nice to find a fun way to describe yourself.
Meaning: The worship of words.
I love words. Not in the sense that I sit and read about their etymology in my spare time but in the fact that I love using them. I love being able to find the best way to say something. Even the most generic sentence can be beautiful. Born to be a copywriter? Quite possibly.
Meaning: A devourer of books
Let’s be honest, bibliophile doesn’t always cover the way we are with our books. It has too many potential negative connotations these days. A bibliophile is someone who loves books on an aesthetic level but doesn’t necessarily imply a love of reading. Bibliophagist does everything bibliophile doesn’t.
Meaning: The smell and aroma of a good book.
Non-bookish people may think we’re weird but you can’t beat the smell of a good book. Vintage books with a musty smell are the best. You can smell the life it has lived and the stories it has told. It’s even more pleasing that the word to describe it is just as pleasing.
Meaning: Someone who carries a book all the time.
We have Sir Walter Scott to thank for this delightful phrase. Do you always carry a book with you? Cause I do. Even if I know that I’m not going to be getting any time to read. It might seem rude but it feels weird not to have one. This lovely phrase makes it seem cuter.
Meaning: One of six half-read books lying in your bed.
In The Meaning of Liff, Douglas Adams used this as his definition of Ballycumber. Ballycumber is a village in Ireland. I’m sure it’s a lovely village but I prefer Adams’ definition. It sums up the life of a bookish person. At least there’s one plus side to having a double bed to yourself.
Meaning: The fear of running out of reading material.
We’ve all been there: packing before we go on holiday and putting more books into your case than clothes. Even if you’re only away for the weekend. We don’t want to think about not having something good to read. It’s nice to know the word needed to explain it to your loved ones. “I need these books, honestly. I have abibliophobia.