My very first, and remaining, passion was, and therefore is, books. I read voraciously, and must have read in (almost) every genre over forty-odd years. First book, foisted on me with the instruction to “read it and I’ll ask you about it later” was The Hobbit. I loved it, and if you can forget the foisting and stern instruction, it was the first book I ever read of my own volition. I began a life-long trend.
First choices were, perhaps understandably, “stories”. Soon came novels, then books in a genre, and latterly factual, historical, travel, and biographies (within a strict field…or genre). But along the way there have been countless books read because they covered a particular, and often short-lived, interest of the moment.
It became the “what I do” scenario…get interested…search for everything on the subject…buy,borrow, steal as many of the list as possible and ingest them like food.
Woodturning brought a whole new category of books into the vast collection. But there was a glaring problem; they were quite specifically about woodturning. They were, are, books about woodturning, for woodturners, by woodturners. This is all well and good when you are new to the craft, it serves to illustrate not only technique and common practice, but serve as sources of inspiration…”I’ll have a go at one of those”, but what was there beyond these books? In truth precious little. The books of Tony Boase, perhaps, expand a little, and add vast interest by giving snapshots of the lives and practices of the turners in the public eye…and a couple not so publicly prominent. So you reach a point where there seems nothing left to read, nothing on a wider plain, nothing broader in stroke and intention. So what next?
Well next was nothing actually. I still searched and collected missing books, and read and enjoyed them as they arrived, but that’s as far as it went. And then…
And then as interest in the wider questions grew, another avenue of possibilities opened up.
Quite some time ago I had read somewhere, I forget where, about a book which sounded interesting, but a quick search proved fruitless, and so I forgot it for a while. But to a book-lover a lost book is like a drug, and the title will pop into mind every so often. The title of this book did just that only last week. So I did another search…and there it was! Brand new, slightly soiled (or so it claimed), and at a bargain price. Happy days. Book ordered.
And then, of all the coincidences, into my email folder pops a scanned copy of the first pages! I won’t name the sender in case the copyright holder is reading! But I thanked him and he knows I appreciated it. But I couldn’t bring myself to actually read the PDF version, knowing the hard copy was on its way. Well it arrived this morning…and I’ve read the introduction and first chapter, and it was well worth the wait.
It’s available on Amazon, and if you wish to expand your understanding of what we do, why we do it, what it is and why, I can only suggest it will be well worth the £10 or so…the first chapter alone is worth the money. And I can’t wait to read the others.