Two Places at Once

“Between the pages of a book is a lovely place to be.” One night when I was about twelve years old I came home from school and found my mom in her room, lying propped up on pillows at the head of her bed, with a book in her hands reading.  Suddenly, she burst into a hearty laugh that made her put down her book momentarily as she regained her composure.  I asked her what was she reading that had her laughing so hard.  She told me it was a book by an author named Sister Soulja called “The Coldest Winter Ever.”  With a scrunched up face and through squinted eyes, I asked “you’re reading about winter?” With a soft chuckle she replied “No, that is the name of the main character.”  That intrigued my interest because I never heard of anyone being named after a season before.  So I asked her to tell me more about the book.  Once she told me what the book was about in great detail, I felt as if I had read it myself.  From that night on we read the book out loud to each other because I could not wait until she was done reading it, to read it for myself.  From the very moment that me and my mom finished the book, “The Coldest Winter Ever,” I fell in love with reading.  Reading became my favorite hobby because it allows me to be the director of my own motion picture in my mind, I love how authors can make me feel a certain way by the choice of words they use, and most importantly I love how reading allows me to be in two places at once.

From the very moment I open a book it is like me and my environment transform into a movie set.  As the words off the page comes to life in my mind, I become the director of the book that has my attention.  I sit up in my black linen chair that has the word “director” labeled in white print on the back. I have my ankles crossed and the clipboard with the script attached to it in my lap as I begin my creative process.  First thing I do is check the lighting and make sure it is perfect.  Just like on a movie set the lighting has to be right, not too bright and not too low so that everything that I read is captured by my eyes and transformed into a scene in my mind.  Next, I do a sound check.  Depending on the content of the novel that I am reading determines the type of music I would have playing in the background, or if I would have any music playing at all.  For example, with a romantic novel I would probably have love songs playing.  Just like in a movie love scene there would probably be a soft harmonizing song playing in the background.  Finally, once I have everything in its place I grab my black bullhorn with the blood red handle, lean back in my director’s chair and yell into the mic “Quiet on my set…Ready, Set, Action!” as I begin reading the first chapter.

‘Suddenly the hairs on the back of Monet’s neck stood at attention.  She sensed someone behind her. But before she could react, she was pushed from behind.  She fell hard, and became sprawled face down on the ground, weight pinning down her body. Monet was frozen, as a cloud of foul breath invaded the back of her head.  Terror filled her soul. “Please let me go,” she moaned.  “You can have my purse.” A sinister chuckle followed her pronouncement. Then a male voice growled, “Did I say I wanted your money? Now shut up!” In this excerpt from one of my favorite books titled “Faith” the author, Michelle Larks, have you the feeling as though you were Monet and just as freighted as if you were the one being attacked.  I love the way an author can use their words to capture my attention in a way that makes me feel like I was actually there with the character. When I read books, I love to be able see, hear, taste, touch and smell everything that the main character is doing. I enjoy that because if I am trying to feel a certain way I can just pick up a book that I know is about however I am trying to feel, and as long as I am reading it I feel the way I want.

What I probably love most about reading is the fact that you can do the impossible and be in two places at once.  Most of the time I am lying stomach down on my bed with my feet kicked up or I may be sitting up with my feet tucked under my legs while sitting on the couch when I start reading, but once I start reading my mind allows me to escape to a place where ever my book takes me.  Sometimes I am just so exhausted and worn out that I could just pass out where ever I am standing. Reading gives me the opportunity to give my body a rest and take multiple vacations, depending on how fast I can get done with one book and start another.  Sometimes my vacations are in small towns called Forks with vampires and werewolves, in districts where the capital pulls the names of one boy and one girl and then they are thrown into an arena to fight to the death, and sometimes they are more pleasant and I go on vacation to a Church and find the love of my life.  More than anything reading permits me to get away without actually having to move or go anywhere.

Frederick Douglas famously stated, “[o]nce you learn to read you will be forever free.” When I got into reading it allowed me an escape route when I did not want to be in the present world. There are so many books in the world that I get so excited thinking about all the possibilities. I am so thankful that I experienced that night with my mother reading.  Now reading is my favorite hobby; it allows me to be the director of my own motion picture inside my mind, I love how authors can make me feel a certain way by the choice of words they use, and most importantly I love how reading allows me to be in two places at once.  “Asking me if I like to read is like asking me if I like breathing”