Almost without fail, whenever I attend an event that features my books (and usually those of the other authors represented by my publisher), I run into someone who unabashedly admits he (or she) doesn’t read books.
The conversation goes something like this:
Me: “What is your favorite type of book to read?”
Them: “I don’t.”
Me (confused a little bit): “You don’t have a favorite genre?”
Them: “No, I don’t really read anything.”
While I totally understand the lack of time, the inability to settle down with a book and read just for pure entertainment’s sake, I cannot wrap my head around avoiding the written word entirely (before you judge, remember, I went through nursing school while raising five kids as a single mom – ZERO reading time for fun).
Truly, these comments were facetious. Everyone reads something, sometime during the day–STOP signs are spelled out in letters.
Sadly, I believe there was more truth to the comment, “I don’t really read anything,” than I wanted to believe. For some reason, the pure joy of escaping into the vast worlds found inside fiction seems to have disappeared for many.
Reading a good book–the love of an amazing story– cannot become a lost art. So much of who we are is based in story-telling. Our history, music, art, theater, even the meals we create have theie basis in a story. We owe it to ourselves, to our children and grandchildren, to set an example…to foster a love for books and reading them.
How to do this is something that people smarter than I can answer. But the example J. K. Rowling set not too many years ago is a good start. Her ability to craft an adventure that captivated the hearts of children (and adults alike) brought small readers back to the love of books. Harry Potter remains a treasured story generation after generation. The same can be said about Stephen King, Emily Bronte, Jane Austin, and Herman Melville (my favorite, of course ❤︎). Their collective story-telling abilities have changed the way humanity has viewed books and their readers’ perception of the world.
Have you found a book that does that for you? Is it a tale worth sharing with others? Perhaps you can set an example by carrying a book in hand (instead of a phone or tablet). Perhaps you can tell someone about that book that you love, so that they can, likewise, fall into the adventure of discovering a treasured story.
My hope is that we all share great books with our friends, family, and associates. My greatest hope is that you will choose to share The Deja vu Chronicles, the BallyHuHu books, or Sullivan House with someone who will love those stories as much as I loved writing them.
Here’s to reading a great book!