Reading changes a person. Of course. We all know that.
But writing changes a person too.
It changes how an author reads. At least it's changed how I read.
Sometimes I'm not sure I'm happy about this.
As a child, I loved to read.
I read anything I could get my hands (and eyeballs) on.
Okay, that's not entirely true.
Wait... there are exceptions...
but give me most anything else:
Encyclopedias, trips to Narnia...
Oh, how I longed to be Lucy...
Books about dogs.
Oh, how I longed for a dog of my own.
Books about brave young girls.
How I longed to be brave.
I supposed I should've spent my time longing for Gilbert to come around, but I was too busy trying to figure out my life's purpose. (Boy, did that take me forever. Want a piece of advice? JOB SHADOW in high school. No excuses. Get off your butt and do it. Don't wait until you're a senior in college to figure out you want to be a nurse, or veterinarian, or teacher, or whatever--figure it out when you're young.)
How I digress (but that was an important point, if anyone will listen).
Before writing, while it's true I liked some books more than others, I'm not sure I really understood why.
Why did I love the Chronicles of Narnia so much?
Only now can I fully marvel at the scope of C. S. Lewis' imagination. Story after story set in Narnia--just the mere idea of a seven or eight book series sends my stomach into an ulcerated knot.
But C. S. Lewis did it. (Of course, he wrote a ton of other books, too, but that's another story.)
Now, although I still love reading, I feel like the magic--although it might not be gone--has been altered somehow.
I can still marvel at a cliff hanger ending.
But then I'm off thinking about the craft instead of the story itself.
I can reread and marvel at lines I wish I'd written. But that makes me kind of jealous--I hate it when I'm jealous.
I can go back in time, enjoying the same book over again (although I'll admit to being jealous of the reader who's reading a gem for the very first time--there I am, jealous again--what a horrible person I must be).
I LOVE it when a book is so smoothly written that my internal editor doesn't even make a peep.
What I want(ed) for Xmas:
1) more time to read
2) to tell my internal editor to shut the BLEEP up
Instead, what I got for Xmas was heartbreak, which is another story (check my POETRY PAGE and I'm sure you'll figure out why...).