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LITERATURE ABUSE: AMERICA'S HIDDEN AFFLICTION 
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Post LITERATURE ABUSE: AMERICA'S HIDDEN AFFLICTION
LITERATURE ABUSE: AMERICA'S HIDDEN AFFLICTION


Once a relatively rare disorder, Literature Abuse (or "readaholism") has risen to crisis levels due to the accessibility of higher education and
increased college enrollment since the end of the Second World
War. The number of literature abusers is currently at record levels.


CAUSES of PROBLEM READING:

Excessive reading during pregnancy is the major cause of
prenatal LA among the children of heavy readers. Known as Fetal Fiction Syndrome, it leaves its tiny victims prone to a lifetime of nearsightedness,
daydreaming and emotional instability.

Most abusers have at least one parent who abused literature, often beginning at an early age and progressing into adulthood. Siblings of
abusers are also likely to become literature abusers. Spouses of an abuser may themselves become problem readers.

Other predisposing factors: parents who are English teachers, professors, or heavy fiction readers; parents who do not encourage children to play games, participate in healthy sports, or watch television.

SOCIAL COSTS of LITERARY ABUSE:
Abusers become withdrawn and uninterested in society or normal relationships. They fantasize, daydreaming about "castles in the air," while
neglecting work, friends and family. In severe cases "problem readers"
develop bad posture from reading in awkward positions, or from carrying
heavy book bags.

SELF-TEST FOR LITERATURE ABUSE

How many of these apply to you?

1. I have read fiction when I was depressed, or to cheer myself up.

2. I have gone on reading "binges."

3. I read rapidly, often "gulping" chapters.

4. I sometimes read early in the morning, or before work.

5. Sometimes I avoid friends or family obligations in order to read
novels.

6. I often read alone.

7. I have pretended to watch television while secretly reading.

8. I keep books or magazines in the bathroom for a "quick nip."

9. I have denied or "laughed off" criticism of my reading habit.

10. Heavy reading has caused conflicts with my family or spouse.

11. I am unable to enjoy myself with others unless there is a book
nearby.

12. I seldom leave my house without a book or magazine.

13. When travelling, I pack a large bag full of books.

14. At a party, I will often slip off unnoticed to read.

15. Reading has made me seek haunts and companions which I would
otherwise avoid.

16. I have neglected personal hygiene or household chores until I
finished a novel.

17. I become nervous, disoriented or fearful when I must spend more than 15 minutes without reading matter.

18. I have spent money meant for necessities on books instead.

19. I have sold books to support my reading "habit."

20. I have daydreamed about becoming a rich & famous writer, or
"word-pusher."

21. I have attempted to check out more library books than is
permitted.

22. Most of my friends are heavy fiction readers.

23. I have sometimes woken groggy or "hung-over" after a night of heavy reading.

24. I have wept, become angry or irrational because of something I read.


25. I have sometimes wished I did not read so much.

26. Sometimes I think my fiction reading is out of control.

If you answered 'yes' to five or more of these questions, you may be a
literature abuser. Affirmative responses to ten or more indicates a serious
reading problem --seek help now!. Fifteen or more 'yes' responses indicates a severe or chronic "readaholic" personality; intervention is
seldom effective at this stage.


WARNING: "Reading Addiction" has been classified as "behavior with a
significant voluntary component," as defined in the Beatty-Eisner Amendment.

If you are declared a "known literature abuser," you will become
INELIGIBLE for SSA disability payments and/or ADA protections. Your fate is likely to be a life of poverty and despair, drifting from one dead-end job to another, as you wallow shamelessly in the causes of your addiction.

Author Unknown



Mon Nov 12, 2007 10:06 am
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I can quit any time I want to. I just... haven't wanted to lately.


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Mon Nov 12, 2007 1:11 pm
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Hi Jales4,

I have enjoyed reading your post and find it liberating!

I am curious, though: what do you mean by "author unknown" exactly?
Where did you find this?


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Last edited by Ophelia on Tue Nov 27, 2007 7:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.



Tue Nov 27, 2007 5:46 pm
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Ah!! I was wondering what was wrong with me....Anyone know when the next LA meeting is?


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Tue Nov 27, 2007 6:56 pm
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Sorry, Constance. Sad to say, there is no LA chapter. Everyone there just reads the script for the movie adaptation.



Tue Nov 27, 2007 7:01 pm
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LOL, that is true, they probably do, but I meant LA as in Literary Abuse (like AA) not as in Los Angeles :D


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Tue Nov 27, 2007 7:05 pm
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Oops. Sorta betrayed myself as a film fiend there, didn't I?



Tue Nov 27, 2007 7:15 pm
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Hee hee....just a tad. However I am a movie lover myself so I see how you could have been led in the Los Angeles direction. I just hate when they butcher my favorite books :evil:


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Tue Nov 27, 2007 7:18 pm
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Hi Evelyne,

It came to me on a piece of paper, which looked like it had been photocopied several times before reaching me. There was no mention of who wrote it, and the person who passed it on to me was unable to help.

I've just googled the title though, and one posting of it cites a Michael McGrorty as the author. http://home.tiac.net/~cri/1999/abuse.html

He is the author of this blog: Library Dust: http://librarydust.typepad.com/



Tue Nov 27, 2007 8:56 pm
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Actually, if they're going to try and adapt an already worthwhile book, I'd rather they send the screenwriter in with a butcher's knife rather than try to render a straight adaptation of a book. What's the point of making the movie just like the book? I say, do something interesting with the source material, and if it sucks, we've still got the book. But the only way to get something better is to take some risks, right?



Tue Nov 27, 2007 9:09 pm
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Thanks, Jales4, for looking up the answer to my question.


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Tue Nov 27, 2007 9:13 pm
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[quote="MadArchitect"]Actually, if they're going to try and adapt an already worthwhile book, I'd rather they send the screenwriter in with a butcher's knife rather than try to render a straight adaptation of a book. What's the point of making the movie just like the book? I say, do something interesting with the source material, and if it sucks, we've still got the book. But the only way to get something better is to take some risks, right?[/quote]

I do see your point MadArchitect, there is definitely something to be said for artistic interpretation. But I can't help it :oops: I get protective as if I had written it myself.....LOL


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Tue Nov 27, 2007 10:04 pm
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This is not funny, every single one of these is true of me except for 21 (my library's limit is 50 items, and even I couldn't handle that.) and 25. I have never once regretted loving books! I pity people who don't.

I feel the same way as MadArchitecht. I won't watch movies based on my favorite books anymore. "Because of Winn-Dixie" was the last movie that I saw that "followed the book perfectly," and of course it didn't really, because a book is an experience you have inside your head, and it can never be duplicated, especially by some guy in Hollywood who's never met you.
I don't mind movies like "Ella Enchanted" and "The Count of Monte Cristo," because they are so ludicrously different from the books they're *loosely* based on that they don't interfere with your memories of how a character looked and talked in your imagination.


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Thu Jan 24, 2008 8:12 pm
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I'm with the crowd here...I tend to avoid based-on-a-book movies of books I've read. Although, if it's not Hollywood attempting it, it can turn out quite well. What most books require is time and loving devotion, to turn out a good visual rendition.

Bad = the first Harry Potter movie. I spent the whole time thinking "Okay, now we'll see chapter 2..."

Good = the British film "I Capture the Castle". Follows the book quite closely, but is lovely, and almost (dare I say) perfect...

Not too bad = "The Power of One". The story of the novel was too big for the movie, but they did capture a lot of the feel of the book...even if they did add the romance.

[Needless to say, LOTR was brilliant, but I'll leave that one out for now...]

The winners are the books that get the BBC mini-series treatment. Pride and Prejudice. Dune. Gormenghast. All lovingly treated, and rather delicious...

But then, they're not hollywood.


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Thu Jan 24, 2008 8:42 pm
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Loricat,

I thought the Harry Potter films were OK, but could not replace the books . There were many excellent ideas, such as the location of the Dining Hall and the choice of some actors, such as the one who plays McGonegal.

I also admire BBC mini-series: Apart from Pride and Prejudice, I also love North and South, and MiddleMarch, and, the best for last Vanity Fair.
(absolutely brilliant).
I found out later that, alas, many BBC mini-series fall short of those standards ( the only way I can see them is by buying the DVDs, which are not cheap):
Emma is dreadful, the Charlotte Bronte series are old-fashioned and lifeless (in my opinion) for example.


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Fri Jan 25, 2008 3:20 am
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