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Tag Archives: unpacking

June is here, and I’ve been productive. I’m almost (finally) completely unpacked and pretty well set up in my new apartment. I’m sorting through books and paring down to no more than two copies of any given title, though some exception may be made for collectible editions (I’m looking at you, Tolkien).

Why two? I like to share my books with my friends, and it never hurts to have a backup of something you’re going to loan to somebody. Plus, it’s a good chance for me to use this:

Knock Knock's Personal Library Kit

Why, yes! I DID buy this for myself. How did you know?

Besides, I need to free up room in my place for new books. I’m very much looking forward to what I find next. Every day around books is a beautiful adventure.

I’ve been thinking about some of my favorite reference books this week. Since I’ve moved into a new apartment (yay me!), I’m in the process of reassembling and sorting my personal library. This includes, of course, my reference shelf.

I’ve got a handful of standards that I always have available. My dictionary and thesaurus are chief among these. Every once in a while, though, a specific project demands something unique. Currently, I’m borrowing The Empire of Death from V. When you’re working on a story about a village of coffin makers and gravediggers, such a thing is an indispensable aid. Additionally, I’ve recently acquired copies of 45 Master Characters and The Writer’s Guide to Character Traits, both of which are great fun when developing well-rounded characters.

Other times, I have to rely on the suggestions of others to track down new ideas. I found an article today in which several famous authors talked about their favorite reference books. Both Cassandra Clare and Neil Gaiman had the same choice, Brewer’s Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. This meant that I had to leave my desk at work and journey downstairs to the print reference collection to track down a copy. Ours is a few years out of date, but I’m planning to purchase a more recent copy for personal use.

Some of the best references are available online, and I strive to make use of them as well. One of the latest is the Digital Public Library of America, a bold project to freely share access to a wealth of information. I also love TV Tropes, but it will ruin your life. Seriously.

What about you, dear readers? Any favorite books/sites that you use frequently? Let me know.