My lifelong affair with reading

i love reading books colour coded bookshelfThe single biggest influence in my life to date has been, without a doubt, reading.

Books – the Chalet School, Famous Five, Hardy Boys, Nancy Drew – make up some of my earliest childhood memories. In summer, when I would be sent to bed when it was still light outside, I’d pull out a book once my door was shut and devour as many chapters as I could before dark set in.

I can honestly say I’ve learned almost everything in life through reading, starting with books, then moving on to magazines and blogs.

I learned about friendships, and romantic relationships, and what I should expect from them. Most of it was poor, and inaccurate, but there were certainly nuggets of wisdom among the chaff.

I learned about work, and careers, and formed my own opinions on what’s right for me and what most of us can realistically expect from adult life.

I’ve learned about writing, reporting, and later blogging, and if it weren’t for reading, I don’t see how I could ever have decided I wanted to become a writer myself.

I’ve learned about location independence, long term travel, solopreneurship and alternatives to the traditional life trajectory.

It makes me sad when people tell me they don’t like to read. I love the written word more passionately than almost anything in the world, so I take this almost as a personal insult. Books have opened up so many worlds to me, and that joy is something I wish for everyone else.

Literacy is a wonderful thing.

(Last year’s Valentine’s post // And one from the year before)

7 thoughts on “My lifelong affair with reading

  • Reply Daisy @ Add Vodka February 15, 2013 at 03:42

    I’ve always loved reading. I remember bringing a book to the grocery store when I was a child and bumping in to things because I was walking and reading. I’d ALWAYS have a book with me. My brother teased me about being a book worm, but I still am an avid reader and always will be.

  • Reply Life [Comma] Etc February 15, 2013 at 04:34

    Love, love, love this. Books are everything to me, as well. In fact, I think I could directly link depression to prolonged periods of not reading!

  • Reply Michelle February 16, 2013 at 18:16

    I bought my condo because of the built in shelving with exposed brick-perfect for my book collection! I am always reading around 5 books at a time. People who don’t like reading scare me. Really. I just don’t get it

  • Reply Manda February 17, 2013 at 05:54

    I can’t imagine what life must be like if you don’t like to read. Life must feel so hollow!

  • Reply storm February 20, 2013 at 18:36

    I get sad when people say they don’t like to read too! It makes me sad they’ll never read The Great Gatsby or Of Mice and Men. They won’t know how beautiful and tragic The Grapes of Wrath is. Revolutionary Road is just an okay movie to them. Yossarian’s pain from Catch 22 won’t be felt. Sigh, it is a sad thought when I think about people who don’t read.

  • Reply American Debt Project February 20, 2013 at 19:44

    Reading and libraries, two of life’s greatest pleasures. I feel blessed having gotten to spend time with so many great characters from my favorite authors: Margaret Atwood, Edith Wharton, Tom Wolfe, Oscar Wilde, Garcia Marquez. OK I’ll stop humble-bragging. I just wanna talk books!!

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