Emily Dickinson once said, “There is no frigate like a book to take us lands away..." Her words express exactly how this writer feels about reading. I’ve always enjoyed the written word and how it can take me places I would never be able to go, even if I had the money, time and possibility.
“Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.” - Leo Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina
“It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen.” - George Orwell’s 1984
“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair.” - Charles Dickens’ A Tale of Two Cities
“Alice was beginning to get very tired of sitting by her sister on the riverbank, and of having nothing to do: once or twice she had peeped into the book her sister was reading, but it had no pictures or conversations in it, ‘and what is the use of a book’, thought Alice, ‘without pictures or conversation?’” - Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland
“It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.” - Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice
“There was no possibility of taking a walk that day.” - Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre
“Squire Trelawnay, Dr Livesey, and the rest of these gentlemen having asked me to write down the whole particulars about Treasure Island, from the beginning to the end, keeping nothing back but the bearings of the island, and that only because there is still treasure not yet lifted, I take up my pen in the year of grace 17-- and go back to the time when my father kept the Admiral Benbow inn and the brown old seaman with the sabre cut first took up his lodging under our roof.” - Robert Louis Stevenson’s Treasure Island
Like the famed book openers above, good books intrigue us…allow us to enter into another word – whether of fantasy or reality. We can relate to the characters, their issues and the decisions being made.
Reading is an unparalleled escape for me. It has fueled my imagination and dreams since childhood and through the information and the imagination I acquired through it I set my dreams and goals higher. I also came away with a love for writing.
Reading provides a temporary escape from everyday life. It entertains yet also can expand our horizons and fuel our dreams. It sure fueled mine from a young age. I used to make up elaborate stories that I would scribble into a notebook in my childish script.
My parents and teachers encouraged me. Without that encouragement and the desire that God placed in my heart, today I would not be doing what I love – writing.
So…please encourage others to read and write, especially young people. Visit your library and start turning the pages of a good book - your frigate to other worlds.
I know that most writers are readers, but people, in general, should be readers too. What books have inspired you to fulfill a dream or accomplish a goal? Please share.