Why do we read? There are many reasons I read. At school, I read voraciously, changing my books at the school library every couple of days, or even every day. English, American, Australian, I didn’t care where it came from. If there was a cracking story I was lost in it.

Choosing books according to my own tastes and experience, or lack thereof resulted in many gaps in my reading of classics though I’ve read many obscure and unusual books. When I discovered an author or series I enjoyed, I read everything I could find.

My nose was stuck in a book at any time I could find, day or night, whether by torch when I could use one or using the light seeping through between the door and door jamb after ‘lights out’. Countless times I remember my mother coming across me, telling me “you’ll ruin your eyes” because I was reading in the half dark.

Looking back, I was addicted to holding in my hands and mind, the dreams and fantasies of those authors. When the life I was living was, well, not to my taste shall we say, I escaped into one more palatable. There I could travel, could have a twin of my own who would share my adventures, was never lonely and could dream of what might be one day.

Every day I discovered words I’d never seen before nor heard pronounced, fascinating people and places I might one day visit, or research for my own writing. Dreams my own readers might one day hold in their hands.


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