Being an avid reader comes alongside its own special set of challenges, to be sure, especially if you’re into non-fiction. When you read voraciously, it can be difficult to keep your reading list full. Not only do you go through individual books quickly, but finding new topics of interest to explore can be a real challenge after a while.
That’s where local interest literature comes in. Books on regional history and other locale-driven topics give you the opportunity to explore your interests on an entirely new level. In fact, they can change a lot about your approach to life. The following are just a few examples of how.
1. You deepen your understanding of your favorite topics.
When you’re passionate enough about a topic that you’ve been studying it your entire life, it’s tempting to think that you know nearly all there is to know about it. After all, you’ve read all the literature on that topic you can get your hands on.
Local interest literature teaches you that every city, state, or region has its own unique approach to the topic at hand. For instance, you may know a lot about World War I from a more general standpoint. However, studying World War I as it was experienced in various regions across the country will expose you to exciting local heroes, war efforts, points of view, and news stories you weren’t even aware of.
2. You deepen your understanding of your own culture, roots, and background.
Local interest literature can also help you develop a whole new appreciation for your own unique place in society. You’re introduced to people and places that seem familiar. You hear personal stories that sound more like the stories your grandparents used to tell you than they do generalized historical narratives.
That said, it’s an excellent way to explore your own personal history. Learn more about the town where you grew up and find out how it evolved into the place you know so well today. Find out more about the personal struggles and challenges your ancestors faced when they first came to settle in your area.
3. You learn how to live your best life right where you are.
Local interest books aren’t just a great way to explore another side of American history and culture. They’re also excellent resources when it comes to getting more out of life in your area. It’s only a matter of time before an old photograph or a random tidbit of information encourages you to further explore a spot in your town where you never spent much time before.
There are localized skill-building books that can help you get more out of your favorite hobbies. Imagine how much easier it will be to finally develop a green thumb when you know exactly how to approach gardening in your region.
4. You become better at relating to other people.
Most people start exploring local interest literature by studying subtopics they already relate to. They’re already into baseball, so they start exploring the local history of baseball in their area, for instance. However, most eventually branch out by exploring less familiar points of view as well. That’s when something amazing starts to happen.
You start to realize how much you have in common with people from other areas of the country. You realize that your struggles and interests have a lot in common with those of immigrants to your area. The result is an expanded world view and an increasing ability to be compassionate when it comes to your fellow man.
5. You discover a wealth of new interests to explore.
If you’ve ever gone to Wikipedia to look up a movie you saw last night and somehow found yourself fascinated by a wiki article on watermelon farming two hours later, then you already know how quickly an interest in one topic can cultivate an interest in another. Local interest literature can work in a similar way.
You might start with a general book on the industrial history of Steinbeck country because of your lifelong love of Tortilla Flat, but realize you particularly enjoyed the sections about winemaking. From there you can study California winemaking as it relates to other cities and towns. You can eventually advance to learning more about the wines themselves. Before you know it, you’re entertaining dreams of becoming a winemaker yourself.
That’s the beauty of local interest literature. You never know how it will change you or where it will take you next. Explore the possibilities today!