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Give yourself the gift of Reading

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!

Just Read

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.

So read.

Read whatever your heart desires, be it comic strips, romance novels, or The Rise and Fall of the Roman Empire.

Just read.

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!


I'm a Young Adult Author with two new series, "The Starlight Chronicles" and "The Super Spies." The first one's a coming of age series and the second one's a mystery/thriller series. I'm also the mother of two boys who keep me hopping and they're my inspiration for everything. When I'm not shuttling my boys to school or a play date, I'm writing. When I'm not writing, I'm reading, hiking, or sometimes running. I love anything chocolate and scary movies too.

13 thoughts on “Give yourself the gift of Reading

  1. I agree with you in that reading not only helps increase vocabulary but also the way one puts the words together in a sentence. I love regency romance and frequently I will phrase a sentence, either in narrative or dialogue, in the style I’ve read in one of the books. The only problem is I write contemporary mystery/suspense.
    I usually catch myself when I write the sentence or in my first edits. A few have slipped by and it has been my editor that will catch it.

    1. Thanks for stopping by Lindsay! I agree with you wholeheartedly that reading not only improves one’s vocabulary, it also improves one’s writing! I find it very interesting that many writers were voracious readers first. 🙂

    1. Thanks for stopping by! My goal is to have a new post every Thursday, so I try and get it up either Wednesday night or Thursday morning! Except for when I’m away on vacation. I haven’t figured out how to get internet access where I’m going. 🙂 But I’m working on it!! 🙂

    1. I’m glad you stopped by today! I agree wholeheartedly with author Laurie Cameron here. It’s so important to let kids read what they want because then they’ll enjoy reading and it won’t be a chore!! 🙂

  2. Totally agree. I started out with little Golden books, and somewhere along the line fell in love with Arthurian romances. I ended up getting a degree in English Lit. 🙂 Let your kids find their favorites, I say and they’ll likely be hooked for life.

    1. Thanks for stopping by J.D.! Sounds like we have a lot of people who agree with the philosophy of letting kids read what they want. 🙂 It’s important to let kids choose what they want to read. In my opinion, it turns reading into an adventure and not a chore! 🙂

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