They say the first step is admitting you have a problem. Though, the first step to what I am not sure, because I have no intention of seeking help for my addiction. Because I am not addicted to any of the usual substances. I don’t crave liquor, narcotics, or even sugar.

No, the written word is my greatest vice. Online. In store. New. Second hand. Paperback. Hardback. It really doesn’t matter what form it comes in, I will take it. I even bought my first e-book recently (though I blame C. S. Pacat for that, her new Captive Prince short stories are only available in e-book format).

Last week, I went back to my home town to visit my parents. I was there and back in a little over 48 hours, and still managed to come home with five books. One of which I am already planning to take to second hand bookstore I like, to exchange for more books. I most likely won’t even bother reading it, I bought it simply because it was 50c and written by an author I like, without even reading the synopsis.

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Besides those five books, in the past two weeks I have also bought two books online, two in store, and set aside three more books to be bought later. If buying nine books in two weeks, and still looking for more, isn’t indicative of an addiction, then I just don’t know what is. Honestly, I don’t even want to think about how much money I have spent on books just in the last year alone.

But, despite the time, money, and space (two bookshelves full, and every available surface in my room has at least one book on it) that my addiction costs me, I wouldn’t give it up for anything. Because it brings me joy. Whether I’m wandering around a bookstore, or market (Lifeline bookfest anyone?) for hours, aimlessly searching online for a new and interesting read, or simply admiring my growing collection, I am happy. I am calm. I am content.

They say the first step is admitting you have a problem.

Yes. I will admit it. My name is Sylvia, and I am addicted to books.

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One of my two bookshelves. The books in the square shelves are actually stacked two deep. Needs alphabetisation.

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