Obviously, this stamp was the date on which I was meant to return the book by. Don’t worry, I don’t still have it! I returned it a couple of weeks ago, but I was reluctant to hand it over without even trying to let someone know why this particular book was kind of special (to me, at least). So, I wrote a note explaining what I had done, and tucked it inside the plastic cover. The likelihood is that one of the library workers noticed it when checking it back in, thought, “Who is this crazy person?” and threw it away. But, I like to think that maybe the next person to pick it up will take out the note, read it, and think, “Oh, that’s kind of cool.” And then they will take it home and be part of this exclusive club of people who borrowed this exact book, and who will probably never meet each other.
I’ll be honest, I didn’t actually count how many stamps there were before starting this project. I just thought it didn’t look like a lot, and that it would be over with quite quickly. It turned out to be a bit more work than I imagined, but it was definitely worth it. I really enjoyed thinking about the different kinds of people who might have picked this book up, and what their problems might be.
I guess I did project a lot of my own reasons for going to the library onto the characters. My housemates were/are busy working most of the time, I had just finished NaNoWriMo, my friends from uni are back in their home countries. I still had another two months to go before going back to uni. I felt a bit lonely and purposeless. The library was just somewhere to go, a reason to get out of the house.
I’d really love to know what you thought overall of the project, so please comment, get in touch, something like that. You can find all twenty stories by clicking “The Library Book.” in the Categories list to the left of this page, or alternatively, you can go to the intro page and look through the pingbacks in the comments section.
LIbrary books used to be like magic mail boxed. The list at the back would record the penciled names of borrowers. Little personal notes could be pulled out of the ethers of a margin next to a line, emoting the exact reaction you have to the text. Digital footprints offer different opportunities for connection. But there’s just something about the physical majesty of a book…
That sounds amazing! Yes, I do think it elicits a stronger reaction when you are connected by something physical. I guess I am trying to forge that kind of connection, and I do hope my note at least gets read by somebody, even if they don’t bother coming back to this blog.
You seemed to get into a pretty good rhythm with the stories toward the end of the project, or maybe I was just paying more attention then. Either way, I enjoyed it.
Keep the good work up 🙂
Thanks, I appreciate you reading. I think a lot of them turned out to be snapshots rather than stories, but I’m just glad I managed to get them all done.
That’s the essence of flash fiction!
I thought this was a very original approach to generating a whole raft of flash fictions, which I have really enjoyed reading. So… what’s next??
Thanks, I’m glad you enjoyed it. I’ll be starting a collaborative project with Inkwell Knight in a little while. 🙂
Cool, I’ll watch out for that. 🙂
It was a great series, and I’m kinda sad now that it’s over. Will be bookmarking this for future rereading. 🙂
Thanks, it’s been hard work trying to pull out a new story each day, something that’s believable. I’m glad you’ve enjoyed it.