Thursday, 14 March 2013

“Books are like imprisoned souls till someone takes them down from a shelf and frees them.” ― Samuel Butler

Everybody needs their own story. I don't mean their own life story, but a story from a book that will stay with them throughout their lives. Everyone, truthfully, needs a favourite book.

You need to suddenly and irrationally only want to read that book to stay in that world for as long as possible. You need to have that feeling in your heart where inside is the secret of the story you have found, and thinking of it makes you feel excited about discovering more. You need to lose track of all time as the words on the pages become your world, and your surroundings disappear.

You need to fall absolutely and utterly in love with at least one character and swear that until the day you die you will never love another more. Because real people are never quite as perfect as fictional ones. You need to feel angry when your character feels angry, you need to feel happy when they do. You need to feel almost sick with butterflies in your stomach when they are nervous or in love or frightened. You need to feel completely attached to your character, even though it may not be the one you're in love with, and feel real emotions as they do. As if everything in those pieces of paper are powerfully real.

You need to assure all your family and friends, and bore them to death, that this is the best book you've experienced and it gets you. Because there must be an author out there for everyone that has perfectly and magically captured the very essence of yourself without even meeting you, articulated that one thing about you that you just couldn't put your finger on.

You need to sit tightly in your bed utterly immersed in the book unaware of the page turning, as if it turns itself. And unaware that there are only words in front of you but instead an entire world separate from the one you are in. You need to stay up until God knows what in the morning forgetting entirely that sleep is important for you to function because for this moment you live and breathe that book.

You need to sob and cry onto the pages and mourn for the fictional, because right now your characters are completely real and you know them like close friends. Hopefully you are lucky enough to be held by someone who understands you need to weep for your fictitious world.

You need to become so attached to this book you seriously consider, or even do, call your children by the characters' names. You need to tell your children this story some day, and even though it may not be their book you will teach them to find their own.

Everybody needs their own story. Everyone, truthfully, needs a favourite book.