Thursday, 17 November 2011

Reading for yourself…

Sometimes I think it’s all too easy for us would-be authors to get lost in the business of writing – to forget the simple pleasure of reading without feeling the need to analyse every detail in case we've missed something that could make us better.

But a couple of weeks ago I read a book that transported me so far away from everything that I forgot to think about techniques or plotlines and literally lost myself in a good book.

At times, this story was so poignant, the characters’ pain so acute, that I felt as though I was looking over their shoulder as events unfolded. And the only way I could cope with what was happening was to physically stop and remind myself that it wasn’t real: that these characters were simply a figment of somebody’s rather brilliant imagination.

That may sound a little over the top, but it’s absolutely true. I can lose myself in a book – for hours, eating into the long hours of the night because I can’t bear to go to sleep on an unfinished story. Because of that, it never usually takes me more than a day to finish something that I’m reading. It’s an extreme – and often expensive – habit, I know, but at least I’m easy to buy for!

When people talk about having their novel published, I can safely say that my greatest thrill would be to encounter a reader who feels that way about my own story. I could definitely live with the idea of my writing keeping someone up at nights!

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