A Month of Reading – Day One, Wild
December first. I finished “wild” by Cheryl Strayed, and when I closed the book after reading the last line, my children were cavorting about the room, having finally become so saturated with Spongebob Squarepants that they were bored by television. “I’m bored,” wailed the younger. “I want my dinner NOW.”
Oblivious to his rude demands, too sidelined by emotion from what I had read, I got up from the couch and marched up to my computer and sent a tweet to Strayed. I don’t often contact the creators of the Old World media that I love so much, because why would they stop to read a message from me? I’ve been a fan of Indigo Girls for decades, and apart from that one time that I met them in person, and that other time that I put a link to my blog on their Facebook wall, I don’t send them fan mail or email or any other communications. I simply listen and love. In that same way I devour books. I read and love. Or read and disdain, commenting in my own little circles, commiserating with others who feel the same.
But now the Old World and the New are colliding more and more. When Stewart gave me a copy of one of Neil Gaiman’s books for my birthday, I sent a message of delight to Gaiman himself and he replied “I hope you like it!” That certainly wasn’t necessary, even though we’ve met and had communication via Twitter in the past, but it was nice of him to reply.
Can you imagine being 14 in the 1980′s and getting a letter from Stephen King? My young, obnoxious head would have exploded. These kids today. They have no idea.
My point is that Strayed’s book so overwhelmed me that I could not keep it to myself, and I went even beyond sharing my feeling with the Internet – I went straight to her. I don’t need her to respond. It was enough for me to tell her how her writing knocked my socks off.
I have been reading a lot of words during the last several weeks. Books, magazines, newspapers, blogs, online magazines, tweets, Facebook updates, and everything else I can get my eyes on. Devouring them, really. I can’t get enough. I was like this when I was younger, too, never resting my brain for a second. My thirst for words is part of a larger life shift, I know. It’s a pause in my output. A refilling of a mostly empty well. For about two months now I’ve relaxed any strategy I ever employed for my writing, and just let things come when they come. All this time I’ve watched more TV and movies, listened to more music, and read more than I have in years.
And quietly, slowly, the well has been filling back up. The very last line of “wild” was the pebble that made it overflow, finally, and I didn’t pause to tell myself it was a silly fangirl thing to do to tweet to the author. I don’t even care – I loved it that much and I wanted her to know.
And I want you to know, about this and the other things I read, because they move me so, and maybe they’ll will move you or teach you or at least give me inspiration to work out the things that I’m thinking, the things about me that need work or attention. I read so much everyday and I forget much of it as soon as it’s done, so I’m going to start cataloguing what I read. Here. Come back tomorrow to see what I read today, and so on through the month of December. I’m going to write it after the children go to bed. Every day.Pin It