Discussion Topic: What Would You Title Your Memoir?

My husband and I have a running joke that whenever I say something that I say fairly frequently, he’ll respond with, “That should be the title of your memoir.”

Recent Carrie Faith Taylor memoir titles include:

  • I Can’t Find my Keys
  • I’m Developing a Migraine
  • and Sploofin’ Moofin (an affectionate term for big muffins)

If I had to come up with a serious title for my memoir, I honestly have no idea what I would do. Perhaps I’d just end up calling it, I Promise this is all True.

What would your memoir be titled? Why?

Why I Keep a List of the Books I’ve Read

I have always loved reading. When I was in middle school, I used to read several books a week. Books were always my escape, and I have always loved the idea of reading as many books as I possibly can.

One of my best memories from school was in eighth grade when we had the Accelerated Reader tests for books. When we read books that were in this program, we would take a short test and get points. Our teacher required 25 points each quarter. Being the over-achiever and book-lover that I was, I decided to read as many books from this program as I could. I got well over a hundred points one quarter, and inspired a little bit of competition between my classmates.

My Great-Uncle Logan

When I was in my senior year of college, my grandma and I went to a family get-together. Since it was close to where her brother Logan lived, she thought it would be nice for me to meet him. I had heard things about my Great-Uncle Logan, but I had never met him. I knew he preferred to speak Pennsylvania Dutch over English and that he didn’t come to the family gatherings. He was the oldest child (like me). But other than that, he was a mystery.

We arrived at his little apartment, and Logan did not appear to be very happy to see us. However, he showed me around his apartment. When he showed me his books, I was amazed. He had giant bookshelves filled with books, and he had read them all. He pulled out some paper that contained a list of all of the books he had read since 1973. Proudly, he shared that he was getting close to 3000 books.

My Own “Logan’s List”

My “Logan’s List”

I started my own list of books in May of 2014, right after I graduated with my Bachelor’s Degree. I have continued to add books to the list, and transferred it into a journal about a year ago so that the list would be safe. As of 2017, I have just added my 109th book to the list. While it is far from the 3000 titles Logan had on his list, I believe it will eventually grow to that length.

Last year, my Great-Uncle Logan died. I only met him that one time, but I was sad to hear about his passing because of all that he had inspired in my life. I like to think that in a small way, his legacy is living on because I am keeping a list of the books I read, inspired by him. I’m often amazed by how much that one encounter has shaped and inspired me.


How Starting a Blog Made Me a Healthier Person

The entire time I was reading How to Murder Your Life by Cat Marnell, I was struck by the impact that creativity had on her health journey. It especially resonated with me because her creative outlet was writing and I have loved writing for as long as I can remember.

Although I have never done drugs, Cat’s story reminded me about how creating this blog and taking the time to intentionally write have turned me into a healthier person. I know that drawing parallel’s between Cat’s drug addiction and my mental illness may be strange, but the only intended parallel is that doing something creative helped both of us in our very different situations.

My Bipolar Disorder

When I was first diagnosed with bipolar disorder, the diagnosing psychiatrist thought my condition was mild enough that I could go with or without medication. I tried a medication for about two months, but without insurance it was too expensive for me to maintain without asking my family for money (and confessing to them that I was diagnosed at a time I wasn’t ready to do that). I stopped taking the medication, and for about a year and a half did not have any major problems.

In 2014, I had a pretty bad concussion. One of the doctors I saw thought that it was possible that the concussion was making both my migraine condition and my bipolar disorder worse (although I didn’t really need a doctor to tell me that). In the years that followed, I started to actually feel like I had bipolar disorder.

Choosing to Medicate

In August of 2016, I was at one of the lowest points in my life. I had just finished my classes for my first Master’s Degree a few months before. Since January or so, my bipolar disorder had been fairly turbulent. Despite all of that, I still did not feel like I needed medication yet. I was still getting things done, even if I was not getting things done well.

However, in August I hit a low. There were problems with my family. When I completely overreacted to something because I was manic, I began to realize that I was not managing my symptoms as well as I had in the past. The situations I was dealing with that were causing me stress would have been more manageable if my mind were sound. As I watched my sister get good treatment for her bipolar disorder and become stable, I began to really desire that. I could act stable, but inside I wasn’t actually stable.

After swallowing my pride (and trust me there was a lot of it), I went to my doctor. I sat in the office and cried, telling her that I didn’t feel right. She immediately put me on a dose of medication that changed my life. Within a couple of weeks I found that I was able to focus on things for more than a couple of minutes. Best of all, the racing thoughts and crippling depression were gone. I was finally beginning to be stable.

Choosing to Write

So you might be asking yourself what this has to do with writing. It was around the same time that I chose to go to the doctor and start taking medication that I also realized that I needed a creative outlet. My jobs were feeling especially unfulfilling (even if that feeling was only temporary) and I wanted to have something that I could build and create that was my own.

I had been reading a book or two a week at that point, and thought that a book review blog would be really fun. Because I was especially enjoying biographies and memoirs, I thought it would be great to keep the focus on those books.

Growing as a Writer

When I first started this blog, I didn’t know anything about blogging. I knew how to write, and knew how to use Blogger. I got a free site there and began to write posts weekly (on a pretty ugly site). While I worked at my cleaning job, I began to listen to podcasts about blogging and writing. They gave me a focus and an energy I hadn’t had for a long time.

Since August, I’ve learned a lot about writing and blogging. I bought a domain and moved my blog to WordPress. I’ve started adding more content and asking friends to write guest posts for the blog. And as the blog has grown, so have I.

While the medication has been a big part of getting healthier, medication does not give me self-confidence. Medication does not force me to have self-discipline. Blogging has forced me to build time into my schedule for creating and editing my content.

While there are still Mondays when I don’t post (sorry!), those days are fewer and fewer. I have gotten better at sticking to my schedule, and have gained so much confidence through my writing. That confidence has carried over into other parts of my life. I feel like blogging has brought me to a very healthy place and turned me into a better person.


Discussion Topic: What is the Best Memoir You’ve Ever Read?

What is the best memoir you’ve ever read? Why did you love it so much?

Personally, I loved Find Me Unafraid by Kennedy Odede and Jessica Posner. I found it heartbreaking and inspiring. It was a memoir that not only kept me interested, but changed the way I thought about charity work in poorer communities. A close second would be the haunting memoir by Amanda Knox, Waiting to be Heard. It rattled me and made me feel so saddened for those who face injustice like she did.

Let me know your favorites in the comments. I’d love to know!

Five Tips to Encourage Your Kids to Read

Rebecca Fletcher is a guest blogger from Coffee, Cats, and Kindergarten. Her blog can be found here.

What was your first favorite book?

Can you remember? For some people, it’s difficult. For me, it’s easy.

My first favorite book was The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. I began reading it in first grade. It was hidden in a huge box of books but, once I discovered it, I was obsessed. I carried it everywhere. I read it in the car. I read it at the kitchen table. I missed the bus because I was too busy reading to watch the clock.

Throughout the years, my favorite books have changed, but my love of reading has not. I have several book series on a bookshelf in my home office, and the local public library workers know me by name. I still read in the car and at the kitchen table and, while I have not recently missed a bus due to my incessant reading, I have almost been late for work on several occasions because I got so caught up in my reading!

As a teacher, I am very fortunate to get to share my love of reading with my students. Something that I used to struggle with, though, was how to reach reluctant readers. It was very difficult for me to fathom how someone could not love reading. However, I knew that it was a reality. I also knew that it was my job to try and change their minds!

In my three years as a kindergarten teacher, I have found several effective methods for getting those reluctant readers to fall in love with reading, and I would love to share them with you! Below are a few suggestions for helping to foster a love of reading in children.

1. Read Aloud

One of my favorite (and most effective) ways to encourage children to love reading is to simply read to them! I love to incorporate different voices and motions into my reading. My students and I will occasionally act out a scene from a story. For example, we acted out The Three Little Pigs during our fairy tale unit. My teaching team and I like to spice things up by switching classrooms sometimes. That means that I will go into another teacher’s classroom to read a book to her students, while she comes into my classroom and reads a book to my students.

Another thing that I love doing with my students that can also be done at home is reading aloud books that they wouldn’t be able to read on their own, such as chapter books. In fact, just this week I started reading aloud an abridged version of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. Even though there are very few pictures, my students are listening attentively to every word!

2. Have “Kids’ Choice” time

I frequently allow my students to choose which books I read to them. In the morning, I might pick 2 books (with similar themes) and allow the students to pick which one to read today and which one to read tomorrow. If we have a few extra minutes before a transition, I’ll grab a few books and allow the students to pick which one I read. Knowing that I am reading a book that they chose makes them much more likely to listen to and enjoy whatever I’m reading!

3. Allow Different Mediums for Different Interests

Along the same lines as the previous point, I try to give my students as many options as I can in their reading materials! I have a classroom library that is stocked with different kinds of books, including fiction and nonfiction. However, I also have magazines in the library, as well as several travel books from around the world. Last year, I created a Donors Choose project, and received funding for more than three dozen National Geographic books on many topics. Comic books have also made their way into my classroom library.

Additionally, I encourage my students to read during our “tablet time” with apps such as ABCMouse. As a teacher, I have had several parents express concern that their child isn’t interested in reading books; that all they want to read is (magazines, comic books, the back of cereal boxes… you get the picture). Whenever that happens, I give this advice: LET THEM READ! I have always believed that it doesn’t matter what kids are reading, as long as they’re reading (and, of course, it’s age-appropriate material).

4. Build Confidence while Maintaining Interest

This one might sound a little tricky, but hear me out because it’s totally worth it! If you are interested in helping your child become a more confident reader, it is important to have them reading at (or just above) their own reading level. I think that I speak for all teachers when I say that your child’s teacher would be more than happy to provide you with that information, should you ask for it. Once you have the reading level, you can search for books on any topic on or around that level. These are books that your child can read independently or with very little help. A fun way to do this would be to alternate pages: your child reads a page, and then you read a page. This allows the child to practice reading about a topic they like, without overwhelming them with reading a whole book.

5. Set an Example

As an avid reader, this is one of my favorite tips. Let children see you reading! In my classroom, I participate in DEAR (Drop Everything and Read) Time with my kids. Though I would love to spend those 10-15 minutes grading papers or assessing my students, I make a point to get the students settled, and then go sit down and read myself. Though it seems like a small thing, my students have definitely noticed that I read when they read! In fact, my students usually even notice when I start a new book. I love knowing that I am setting a great example for them! You can also do this at home.

In addition to that, something as simple as having different reading materials left around the house (newspapers, magazines, books, etc.) can show children that reading is very valuable. Seeing their parents and siblings actually reading those things can have an even better impact!


I genuinely hope that you found some valuable nuggets in the information I shared above! I would love to know if you choose to try some of the tips I mentioned. Please share in the comments! If you have any questions for me, you can hop over to my blog or email me directly at cofeecatsandkindergarten@hotmail.com.

Thanks to Faith for letting me guest post.

Rebecca Fletcher is a guest blogger from Cats, Coffee, and Kindergarten. Cats, Coffee, and Kindergarten is a blog that details Rebecca’s insights and fun as a Kindergarten teacher, coffee enthusiast, and cat owner. Her blog can be found here.

Borrow eBooks for Free through Your Digital Library

If you love to read books digitally and want another resource for obtaining them for free, you’ve come to the right place. Just like your local library allows you to borrow print books for free, your digital library allows you to borrow eBooks for free to read on your Kindle, phone, or computer. For most digital libraries, all you need is a local library card before thousands of eBooks are available for your reading pleasure.

I’ve compiled a list of the digital libraries in all fifty states. While a few states do not have digital libraries, most have libraries with thousands of titles. Those with libraries only require a library card (which is usually free to get at your local library) for the covered counties. Find your library, and happy reading!


AlabamaThe Alabama Virtual Library contains access to journal articles and other scholarly works, along with some eBooks. To gain access, an Alabama library card is needed.

Alaska – The Alaska Digital Library has about ten thousand eBooks for users to borrow. To gain access, an Alaska library card is needed.

Arizona – The Arizona State Library, Archives & Public Records has a section for eBooks. One section is available for free to all readers (regardless of location). Another section has more eBooks. To gain access to that section, an Arizona library card is needed.

Arkansas – Arkansas has both the Central Arkansas Library System and the ArkansasLibrary2Go. Arkansas users are able to use one of these two libraries based on location. To gain access, an Arkansas library card is needed.

California – California has both the Southern California Digital Library and the Northern California Digital Library. California users are able to use one of these two libraries based on location, although some users in central California may be left without coverage. To gain access, a California library card is needed.

Colorado – The Across Colorado Digital Consortium has over seventeen thousand titles. To gain access, a Colorado library card is needed.

Connecticut – None

Delaware – The Delaware Division of Libraries has over fifteen thousand titles for Delaware residents. To gain access, a Delaware library card is needed.

Florida – The Florida Electronic Library has a limited selection of eBooks, along with other resources. To gain access to eBooks, a Florida library card is needed.

Georgia – None

Hawaii – The Hawaii State Public Library System has over forty thousand digital titles available for Hawaii residents. To gain access, a Hawaii library card is needed.

Idaho – The Idaho Digital Consortium has eBooks available for Idaho residents. To gain access, an Idaho library card is needed.

Illinois – None

Indiana – Indiana has the Indiana Digital Media, Indiana Digital Download Center, and Northeast Indiana Digital Library. Indiana users will use one of these libraries, based on the location of their library. To gain access, an Indiana library card is needed.

Iowa – None

Kansas – The Kansas State Library has eBook lending. To gain access, a Kansas library card may be needed.

Kentucky – None

Louisiana – None

Maine – The Maine Infonet allows Maine users to borrow eBooks. To gain access, a Maine library card is needed.

MarylandMaryland’s Digital eLibrary Consortium contains over twenty thousand eBooks for Maryland users to borrow. To gain access, a Maryland library card is needed.

Massachusetts – The Massachusetts Libraries has a large collection of eBooks and other digital materials. Although many of the digital materials are freely available to online users, a Massachusetts library card is needed to gain access to the eBook collection.

Michigan – Michigan has both the Southwest Michigan Digital Library and the Michigan eLibrary. Michigan users can use these based on location. To gain access, a Michigan library card is needed. The Michigan eLibrary will also accept a Michigan driver’s license for identification.

Minnesota – The Minnesota Digital Library has digital resources freely available for online users and eBooks available for Minnesota residents. To gain access, a Minnesota library card is needed.

Mississippi – None

Missouri – The Missouri Libraries 2 Go has nearly thirty thousand eBook titles for Missouri users to borrow. To gain access, a Missouri library card is needed.

Montana – The Montana Library2Go has over twenty-five thousand eBook titles for Montana users to borrow. To gain access, a Montana library card is needed.

Nebraska – The Nebraska OverDrive Libraries has thousands of eBook titles for Nebraska users to borrow. To gain access, a Nebraska library card is needed.

Nevada – None

New Hampshire – The New Hampshire Downloadable Books Consortium has nearly twenty thousand eBook titles for New Hampshire users to borrow. To gain access, a New Hampshire library card is needed.

New Jersey – The eLibraryNJ has many eBook titles available for New Jersey users. To gain access, a New Jersey library card is needed.

New Mexico – The New Mexico Library to Go has over six thousand eBook titles available for New Mexico users. To gain access, a New Mexico library card is needed.

New York – The New York Public Library has nearly one hundred fifty thousand eBook titles available for New York users. To gain access, a New York library card is needed.

North Carolina – The North Carolina Digital Library has nearly forty thousand eBook titles available for North Carolina users. To gain access, a North Carolina library card is needed.

North Dakota – North Dakota’s Library2Go has nearly thirty thousand eBook titles available for North Dakota users. To gain access, a North Dakota library card is needed.

OhioThe Ohio Digital Library has nearly one hundred thirty thousand eBook titles available for Ohio users. Users are able to check out ten titles at a time for twenty-one days each. Additionally, they are able to put fifteen titles on hold and five thousand on a wish list. To gain access, an Ohio library card is needed.

Oklahoma – The OK Virtual Library has nearly twenty-five thousand eBook titles available for Oklahoma users. To gain access, an Oklahoma library card is needed.

Oregon – The Oregon Digital Library Consortium has nearly forty thousand eBook titles available for Oregon users. To gain access, an Oregon library card is needed.

Pennsylvania – Pennsylvania appears to have partial digital coverage with their Central PA Libraries, which has over ten thousand eBook titles. To gain access, a Pennsylvania library card from select counties is needed.

Rhode Island – The Ocean State Libraries eZone has over sixty thousand eBook titles available to Rhode Island users. To gain access, a Rhode Island library card is needed.

South Carolina – The Jasmine Digital Library covers select areas of South Carolina and has over twenty-five thousand eBook titles. To gain access, a South Carolina library card from one of the covered regions is needed.

South Dakota – The South Dakota Digital Consortium has nearly fifteen thousand eBook titles available for South Dakota users. To gain access, a South Dakota library card is needed.

Tennessee – The Tennessee R.E.A.D.S. has nearly eighty thousand eBook titles available for Tennessee users. To gain access, a Tennessee library card is needed.

Texas – The Central Texas Digital Consortium has over five thousand eBook titles available for users in select areas of Texas. To gain access, a Texas library card from one of the covered regions is needed.

UtahUtah’s Online Library has over thirty thousand eBook titles available for Utah users. To gain access, a Utah library card is needed.

Vermont – The Green Mountain Library Consortium has over ten thousand eBook titles available for Vermont users. To gain access, a Vermont library card is needed.

Virginia – None

Washington – The Washington Anytime Library has over thirty-five thousand eBook titles available for Washington users. To gain access, a Washington library card is needed.

West Virginia – West Virginia has both West Virginia DELI and the West Virginia Reads available for West Virginia users, based on region. To gain access, a West Virginia library card from one of the covered regions is needed.

WisconsinWisconsin’s Digital Library has nearly seventy thousand eBook titles available for Wisconsin users. To gain access, a Wisconsin library card is needed.

Wyoming – Wyoming’s GoWYLD has thousands of eBooks. They allow users to check out five eBooks at a time for fourteen days each. To gain access, a Wyoming library card is needed.


If you use any of the digital libraries listed and are able to provide additional details, please feel free to comment below. I would like to keep this resource as comprehensive and up-to-date as possible.

Discussion Topic: What Format do You Prefer to Read?

Books are readily available to use in a number of formats. However, all of us have a preference when it comes to how we read our favorite books.

What format do you prefer to use when reading? Some formats are:

  • Hardcover Print: These books are nice because they are sturdy. New release books are often easy to find in hardcover copies. Unfortunately, they are often more expensive because of the material cost.
  • Paperback Print: These books are lighter and easy to read. One disadvantage is that sometimes the binding makes them difficult to hold open.
  • Kindle eBooks: These books are available digitally and can be read on a phone, computer, or Kindle. They are convenient because they use very little space. Unfortunately a dead battery can leave you without your reading material when reading an eBook. The use of a digital book can also cause additional eye strain.
  • Other eBooks: Books not available through Amazon’s Kindle app provide extra reading opportunities. However, sometimes these prove to have formatting issues.

Personally, I prefer Kindle eBooks, as I am able to get them at a price that is competitive to paperback books. At the rate that I read, I am also able to have multiple books with me at all times, allowing me to start a new book right after finishing another.

What format do you prefer to read? Do you read multiple formats? Leave your thoughts in the comment section below!

10 Questions to Ask before Getting Married

Are you thinking about getting engaged or married soon? Inspired by Courtney Robertson’s book I Didn’t Come Here to Make Friends and some of my own experiences in dating, I decided to compile a list of questions to ask your significant other before taking the next big step in your relationship.

Some of the following questions are directly inspired by Courtney Robertson, and others are inspired by my own experience. While I am by no means saying your marriage is doomed if you do not ask them, knowing where you each stand on these issues will prevent any surprises from cropping up down the road.

1. What are your religious views?

For many people, religion is an important part of life. While it is likely you will know the religious views of your partner by the time you reach engagement, it is important to make sure there is clarity on what those views are before you go any further. While religious views may end up changing during the course of a relationship, knowing where you stand going into marriage is important.

2. What are your political views?

I would love to say it is as easy as asking what party they usually vote for in elections. Unfortunately, there is so much variety within each party that it is important to ask what political issues are important to your partner. If one of you is very interested in political activism while the other doesn’t vote at all, that may be an issue that needs to be talked through. Even if you have very similar views, it is likely you will find differences. Making sure you can differentiate between small differences you can live with and philosophical differences you cannot is something you will be wiser to do before you get married.

3. Is your career or future career compatible with mine?

This question is probably not applicable for many people. However, in some cases it can be a major question with serious implications if the answer is “no.” Because I am a female called to be a minister, this question was at the top of my list when I was dating seriously. Unfortunately, it ruled some people out. When I was dating my husband and asked him if my being a pastor would be a problem, he answered something along the lines of, “My mom’s a pastor, so no.” Conflicts other couples may face are jobs that require moving around like the military, or jobs that require the spouse to be in the spotlight. Even jobs that may not seem to pose any conflict are worth discussing.

4. Do we like each others’ families?

I used to hate when my grandma told me, “When you marry someone, you marry their family.” I hated it so much because it was usually said when I was dating someone whose mother despised me. It felt like her subtle way of telling me my relationship was doomed and I may as well move on. As much as I hated it, though, it is important that you are able to get along with the family of your spouse. While there may be some minor conflicts or even a few family members you don’t like, it is important that you’re able to get along with the people you’ll be spending holidays with.

5. Do you have the same ideas about raising children?

This question opens a whole can of worms. Do you both want children? How soon? One child or more than one? How do you plan to discipline them? Will you home school them or send them to public school? While children may not be on your mind for many years, it is a good idea to make sure you and your partner have the same ideas in this area.

6. How will housework be divided?

While it may just fall into place naturally, making sure you have a discussion on how housework will be divided is important. Will it depend on who is working more hours? Will both spouses take equal amounts of the housework? It is worth a discussion before getting married to avoid any misunderstandings later on.

7. Are we compatible?

Even if you’re in a relationship, it does not mean you’re compatible. In one of my longest-lasting relationships, the main problem we had was that we were completely incompatible. We really cared for each other, but we were different in ways that drove each other crazy. When you take a step back from a relationship and look at it, you can usually see whether or not you’re compatible.

8. Are you addicted to anything?

When you ask this question, your partner may answer with something as benign as caffeine or video games. However, it is important to know if there are addictions like alcohol, drugs, or pornography in your partner’s life. And maybe your partner will tell you he or she is addicted to naps. Guilty! Discussing what addictions you’re okay with and which ones you’re not is important. I’m sure my husband would have liked to have known about the naps before we got married…

9. What do you like to do for fun?

It’s important to have something in common with your significant other beside liking each other. While you may have a good idea what he or she likes at this point, take some time getting to know what all they enjoy doing. Even if you only have one thing you like to do together, make it your thing. My husband and I have very different hobbies. While I love to read and read all the time, he hasn’t read a book in over a year. However, we’ve found that we love watching movies together. We’ve also worked at stretching ourselves to at least try things the other enjoys from time to time so that we can do more together. If you have more hobbies in common with your partner, it may be even easier to find things to do together as the years stretch on.

10. How did your previous relationships end?

We all have our biases when answering this question. But it is good to hear your partner answer it and talk through their previous relationships. If they’ve been significantly hurt by a previous partner, you’ll know. If they were cheated on, you’ll know. Whatever baggage they’re bringing into the relationship, you’ll know. While we all use some degree of “my crazy ex” language, how your partner describes his or her exes will also speak volumes about your partner’s character.


What questions would you add to this list? Leave your feedback in the comment section below.

Discussion Topic: Which New Memoir Interests You?

I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for me to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

I’m going to review a new release book, and you get to choose which one! While I try to make sure I read a variety of different types of memoirs, I want to make sure I am reading what you want me to read. Below are four new release memoirs. I will read and review whichever memoir receives the most positive feedback.

  • You Carried Me by Melissa Ohden: Melissa finds out as a teenager that she was rescued from a botched abortion. This is the story of her struggle to forgive, understand, and move forward.
  • No Wall Too High by Xu Hongci: Xu describes his imprisonment and escape from Mao’s labor reform camps.
  • Rise by Cara Brookins: Cara uses YouTube videos to build a home for her four children after leaving an abusive marriage. With no experience building anything and only her children to help her, it was an extraordinary challenge.
  • How to Murder Your Life by Cat Marnell: Cat was an associate beauty editor at a top fashion magazine with a secret addiction to prescription medication. She also suffered from bulimia and insomnia, which threatened to wreck her career.

All of these books sound so interesting to me! Be sure to comment with your preference by February 10 and stay tuned for my review of the “winner” on February 17!

The Dark Side of Memoir Addiction

Memoir addiction can be a lot of fun. There are very few things like the thrill of picking up a book and finding yourself completely lost in another person’s life story. Feeling the rush of emotions and being enchanted by someone else’s excellent writing is an intoxicating feeling. Unfortunately, memoir addiction has a dark side to it as well. Although those pages may seem like a benign use of your time, memoir addiction has a dark underbelly.

Sleep Deprivation

I have learned about sleep deprivation more than any of the other side effects of memoir addiction. From the moment I open up a new memoir and begin reading those first few pages, I find myself unable to resist completing the book as quickly as possible. This often means that I will sacrifice much needed sleep in order to read as much of a book as I can. I often find myself telling my husband, “One more chapter and I’ll go to sleep.” Unfortunately, I do not realize where the chapters have ended and the new ones have begun, and find myself at four in the morning with the book completed. Despite my need to be up early, I will sacrifice sleep to continue reading a memoir I am enjoying.

Regardless of the consequences I may suffer because of lack of sleep, I repeat this cycle. Each time I find myself in the throes of a new memoir, I again read through the night. All the while, I tell my husband, “One more chapter.”

Financial Hardship

Memoirs are expensive. Because of the speed at which I, a memoir addict, go through these stories, this can bring financial hardship if I am not careful. While libraries are an option, there is an allure to the option of owning books. Even though I get most of my books from the library, late fees often plague my life because of the forgetfulness caused by my sleep deprivation.

Relationship Problems

Time seems to stop while reading a great memoir. Sadly, it doesn’t. Despite the fact that hours feel like minutes while reading, those hours are still lost. So is the time with my loved ones. Although my husband has his own independent hobbies, I can find myself engrossed in a memoir (and talking about memoirs) for long periods of time. While I may sometimes feel some sense of guilt over this missed time with my husband, especially, I am often so preoccupied with the lives of those in my memoirs that I hardly notice.

My husband, friends, and other family may feel neglected while I am spending time reading. They may feel they come second to my love for memoirs when all I talk about are memoirs. This can lead to distance and difficulties in those relationships, as I am often oblivious to the fact that he or she is being distant. When reading, I may often have delayed responses, as it takes five to ten seconds for my mind to process anything outside of my books. This can lead to my husband feeling ignored and unimportant, especially if what he’s trying to say is more important than my latest book. If not intentionally combated with some time away from memoirs, memoir addiction can lead to relationship problems.

Where to Get Help

I sure wish I knew. I’m sure there’s a book about that somewhere. Perhaps I could find a memoir about it!

Please note that this article is an exaggeration, and does not accurately reflect the exact state of my life and my relationship with my husband, despite the “nuggets” of truth to it.