Tuesday, October 11, 2011

on reading.

My friend has to read Nancie Atwell's book, In the Middle: New Understandings About Writing, Reading, and Learning, for class. While reading the fourth and fifth chapters a couple of weeks ago, she looked up at me and said something along the lines of, "This all makes me think of you." Of course, I borrowed the chapters from her and read them myself.

In describing herself and her beliefs about reading, Atwell is describing me and my beliefs about reading: 

“For me, reading is the equivalent of breathing chocolate air. It’s pure, instantaneous pleasure.”

“I can’t imagine anything worse than not being able to read. I read all the time, whenever and wherever I can. I never sit down by myself to a meal without something to read. I read the backs of cereal boxes. When I’m standing on the checkout line at Shop ’n Save, I read the headlines of all the National EnquirersStars, and TV Guides. I always have a book or newspaper in the car, in case I get stuck at the Southport Bridge or to fill the minutes in a theater while I’m waiting for the movie to start. I haven’t gone to sleep without reading since I was in elementary school, even for five minutes when I’m dead tired. I read literature, and I read junk. I don’t know if I could go on living if I couldn’t read. And it’s not because reading is good for me. It’s because it makes me feel good: it makes me happy.” 

“There’s nothing better for you – not broccoli, not an apple a day, not aerobic exercise. In terms of the whole rest of your life, in terms of making you smart in all ways, there’s nothing better… It’s like money in the bank in terms of the rest of your life, but it also helps you escape from the rest of your life and live experiences you can only dream of. Most importantly, along with writing, it’s the best way I know to find out who you are, what you care about, and what kind of person you want to become.”

Tell me, how do you feel about reading?

P.S. A reading lover's guide on how to read more. 


  1. That would basically describe me as well :)

  2. "What really knocks me out is a book that, when you're all done reading it, you wish the author that wrote it was a terrific friend of yours and you could call him up on the phone whenever you felt like it."
    -Holden Caufield "The Catcher in the Rye"


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