Friends of the Library and old books

As I was taking my morning walk today, I swung by the city library. When I walked in they were putting out a new load of books from the ‘Friends of the Library’. People donate books to the Friends of the Library and the Friends sell the books at very modest price with the proceeds going to the library. These books range from someone cleaning out a closet to people with too many books wanting to make some space it their lives.

The book range from old best sellers (and sometimes not so old), to ancient children’s books, to books that were not as good as the buyer thought they would be. I once found a signed murder mystery book by a well known author in the pile.

This morning I picked up a couple of books on railroads. I’m not a railroad fanatic, but I write Steampunk and it’s important to get the details right. Also the books had pictures of how people dressed in the late 1800s. This is very valuable information. Steampunk readers can be very picky about the details.

One book also showed the sleeping arrangements for foreign trains. In the US, the Pullman car was the king of railways and is the most shown in the movies. One picture showed a British train with people sleeping in what I would call the overhead baggage bin if it was on a airplane. It also showed how one family had hung blankets down the side of the over head sleeping bin so the people sleeping on the wood benches below could have some privacy. Sleeping or hiding in an overhead bin on an old train is going into one of my novels.

Check out your local library, some of the information is not free but it can be cheap.

I always wondered why writers never talk about writing in libraries. It’s quite, the chairs are nice and the big library in the next city has an expresso bar that the library runs attached to the side of the library. The library is also cheap and the good ones are air-conditioned and heated.

Stay strong, write on.             Professor Hyram Voltage

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