I have always loved books, ever since I was really little. I learned to read at a very young age – whilst I was still at Montessori school. I’m fairly sure (and I’m sure I’ll be corrected if I’m wrong!) that I was already reading independently at the age of two.
Throughout primary school I had a reading age several years higher than my actual age. At school I would read books aimed at the higher classes, and at home I would borrow books from my older brother. I did occasionally read the books aimed at my own level, but I generally found them too easy.
I was a quick reader too. I devoured books. I inhaled them. If I had a new book bought for me I would inevitably finish it in one sitting. When we had to read in groups at school I would often be lost when it was my turn to read aloud because I’d been reading ahead whilst the slower readers took their turns. My older brother and I adored the Harry Potter books and our parents would get us copies of each new one at release. We would both sit in the living room reading all day until we finished. It was a bit of a competition between us, and it was always pretty close. I remember one of the release days I had a ballet show and was so disappointed because I just wanted to read! My mum had the book in the car so I was able to read it on the way home.
I don’t devour books in quite the way I used to. I still love to read though, whenever I can find the time. I’ve recently started reading eBooks. I’d never much liked the idea of eBooks. I love tangible books. The way they feel, the way the smell… They hold memories in their pages. And eBooks are missing all of that. But on the other hand eBooks are far easier to transport, arguably more convenient and inevitably cheaper. I believe I’ve mentioned before that I have over a thousand eBooks without having paid any more than about £10 for them. That’s in total, not per book. And actually the number of books is now about two and a half thousand.
My love of books goes hand in hand with my love of the English language, and my love of story telling. Having such a passion for books, words and stories has undoubtedly contributed to my desire to be an author. I love to write, almost as much as I love to read. And again it’s something that started in my childhood. My friends at primary school would ask me to read my stories and poems to them if we’d had to write some in class. I remember a somewhat Gothic poem I wrote in secondary school that left the class – and the teacher – in silence after it was read aloud. I think the teacher’s comment was something along the lines of “Wow, that’s powerful.” In fact I realised later that the poem had one more line than it should have had for the style we were writing, but no-one had even noticed!
I’ve been saying for years that I’m going to get a book written and get published. That I’m going to live off the money I make as an author. And that is definitely something I still aspire to. Something I dream of. I may be studying nursing, but writing is still my passion and always will be. And that’s what I love about NaNoWriMo. It gives me the impetus I need to write. The – if you’ll excuse my phrasing – kick up the arse I need to reach my dreams.
So keep an eye out at your local bookshops and libraries, because one day in the (hopefully not too distant) future you’ll be able to find my book on the shelves. I hope you’ll read it. And I hope you’ll like it.
Do you devour books in big chunks or do you prefer to savour them delicately? Have you considered writing a novel, or ever had anything published?