Hello Everyone! I’ve got a surprise for you today! I’ve got Fellow Author Laurie Cameron here and she’s going to talk to us about the gift of reading! Take it away Laurie!
When I was in my teens, my mother kept trying to get me to read the classics—The Tale of Two Cities, Pride and Prejudice, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, etc. She told me it would improve my vocabulary and, thus, my SAT scores. But classics didn’t interest me then and they still don’t today. As a teen, all I wanted to read was romance. A little adventure on the side was okay, but there had to be a romance or I wasn’t interested. My mom gave me such a hard time about reading “trash” that I ended up not reading anything.
When I moved away from home at the age of eighteen, there was no one to tell me what to read and what not to read, so I started reading romance novels in a big way. I devoured them. Every once in a while, I would pick up a mystery, but romance novels were my staple until I was well into my thirties.
Then I started turning to other genres. But I had a golden rule, one that I insist on to this day. The book has to have a plot and a happy ending. That’s probably one of the reasons I loved romance novels. The hero and heroine always live happily ever after.
Now I read just as voraciously as I ever did. For me, reading is one of the greatest gifts in life. On an airplane, in a new place, when life is getting you down, when you’re bored, you can always pick up a book and be carried away to another place and time. The characters become your friends, especially when you find a series you like.
The one thing on which I agree with my mother is that your vocabulary does improve. Sometimes when I am writing I pull a word out of my head and wonder where in the world it came from. When I check it on my on-line dictionary, I invariably find that it is exactly the word I want. My son is now studying for his GRE’s and he is amazed at the breadth of my vocabulary. And guess what? That vocabulary came from reading. Not classics, not Pulitzer prize winners (although I have read a few of those), but just plain reading. But of course, strengthening my vocabulary was never my goal. I read purely for pleasure.
If you can give yourself one gift that will last forever, that goes with you no matter where life takes you, it’s the gift of reading.
Read whatever your heart desires, be it comic strips, romance novels, or The Rise and Fall of the Roman Empire.
Laurie Cameron and her side-kick, Laura Meagher have written several mysteries for kids: The Ghost at Old Oak Way (2009), The Ghost at Judy Creek Station (2012), and The Ghost at Cavern Lake Hollow (coming soon). Like reading, they write for the pure enjoyment of it. We have a number of on-line sites where we share our love of reading.
Thanks Lisa for hosting us today!