Sunday, March 23, 2008

Down the Tube: I

When I was a child I lived in a village that was far away from any library. Fortunately my mother had a good friend who possessed bookshelves full of all types of books. I remember going home every Friday afternoon with armfuls of new books to read. At the age of 8 I already had a reading age of 13, according to tests which had been done at school, so it wasn’t long before I left childish books behind and was devouring science fiction and fantasy. I remember one day a school friend of mine looked up from the childish, illustrated book of Cinderella she was reading to tell me that science fiction was rubbish: ‘It will never happen’.
‘Why’ I wondered ‘did some people think that stories had to come true?’
Fortunately, as I was growing up I gravitated towards adults who understood my need to absorb new ideas and words.

Some of the books I read were collections of short fantasy stories. I think they might have appeared monthly and my mother’s friend had had a story published in one issue. A story I especially remember was written by an author supposedly shut in a room with nothing except a typewriter. He was expected to turn out reams of pages of writing in exchange for being deprived of day and night and fed tasteless purée. An interesting exercise if you think about it.

How was I to know that some stories do come true eventually and I was destined to take the place of that long ago writer? I wonder how many others have passed through here and how long they stayed, were they let out, sane or insane or did they die completely disorientated?


Donna said...

I also love books!! You'll do it...I just know. hughugs Happy Easter sweetie!!hughugs

Worldman said...

My father (at that time parents "decided" what you were going to study for) thought it would be best for me to make a apprenticeship in administration. Because, contrary to my brother who is very "manual" and made a mechanic apprenticeship, I had my nose in books all the time. And like you, I was very advanced in my reading. At 12 I read "stuff" 18 year old one would read. And I read a Sigmund Freud book at the age of 16.

Please don't laugh, but I also like to read Danielle Steel. A nice change from Lopsang Rampa. And to rest my mind, I read Tom Clancy when I have finished something like the "End game in the Balkans".

Anji said...

Donna: Thanks for your comment; I havn't had much time for visiting recently. Hopefully this week I will catch up and get my blogroll sorted out.

Peter: I know exactly what you mean. I like all sorts of books, sometimes challenging and sometimes a light read.

cube said...

I enjoyed this post. I was a voracious reader as a child and read all types of books. To this day, my reading habits run to an eclectic mix of challenging scientific tomes to light novels. I don't feel the need to impress anyone but myself.

Anji said...

cube: Thank you, people who don't read are missing out on so much. With our imaginations we can travel through time and space - think the wall of Planck

Anji said...

Hope that doesn't sound pretentious