My dear friend introduced me to the most awesome Tumblr site, and I had one of those “omg–what else am I missing” moments which make me experience both excitement (at the endless online discovery possibilities) and despair (at the endless online discovery possibilities).  Book Porn, which has the undeniably appealing quality of combining two of my favorite things (kidding, of course:), as I like books more than I like porn (you know, generally speaking).  Book Porn is to bibliophiles what The Playboy Mansion is to Hugh Hefner, and the site has this strangely addictive quality of offering images that tap into that highly personal, somewhat inexplicable place that exists within most book lovers I know, that amorphous calling to read books, to handle books, to have books in one’s possession at all times.  The site perpetuates the understanding shared by many of its followers that if one were actually trapped in a well-stocked bookstore until the end of time, well, that just wouldn’t be that bad (especially if one’s parallel reality has her raising teenagers:)

The intoxicating aspects of Book Porn in fact reach beyond the obsessive book lover’s voyeuristic tendencies and tap into a dormant yet readily desired creativity.  For example, I find myself when perusing the site (usually at 4 a.m., under the covers, within the confines and safety of darkness and aloneness) creating thought provoking tableaus which I would, if daylight afforded me a similar artistic enthusiasm, pursue and perhaps submit to  Tumblr.  While some of the most successful images on Book Porn seem to be spontaneous expressions of book adoration, mine–at that late/early hour–are a wee bit more stylized.  Imagine, if you will, several translations of Anna Karenina providing a protective yet instructive barrier behind which Lady Chatterley’s Lover and The Scarlet Letter laze about, not even entertaining the possibility of the train that is about to come crashing through their milieu. Another submission idea has Nick Hornby’s How to be good and Juliet Naked teetering precariously on a stack of Hornby’s other books, (dangerously) close to toppling, inexplicably (you know, “Art” with a capital A), and somewhat curiously, onto a naked vagina…

This week especially I have been hankering toward self-expression through photo ops, as my very own work, Broken Hallelujah: notes from a marriage–published close to a year ago now–was featured in the local author’s section at the JCC’s yearly Jewish book festival.  Not being a big fan of self-promotion (other than this blog, two Facebook pages, a Twitter feed, and a Linkedin network), I thought Book Porn would be an appropriate place to showcase my very own book as it looked on display at the JCC.  But then I realized that highlighting my own work on the Tumblr site Book Porn–dedicated to the books we live in rather than the ones we wrote–would be seen, and rightly so, as nothing more than masturbation.


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