Hello friends and readers. Once more I’m back.
So what have I been up to you might ask? What can I say, not too much. Another week passed, and more books were read. More things were watched, and not much else.
Since I live in a world that is mostly devoid of human interaction, due mostly in part to my work schedule, I spend most of it alone. But I don’t feel lonely, at least most of the time. I have books, of course, and things I can use to fill the void that is the lack of human voices. Be it movies or television series, or even a podcast now and again, I still am keeping language apart of my day-to-day.
You’d be surprised at how quickly the skill of interaction fails you when you don’t use it. The same can be said about anything really though. Hence why I keep reading. At least there I’m not just sitting around waiting for the time for bed to come. I can, at least, continue to learn how a story is told. Some I find with greater ability to do so than others, but even ones that aren’t exactly perfect I can attempt to find what is lacking. And in so doing try to weed out anything like that from what I’m writing.
When I first started getting into reading I was in grade school. The selection was limited to me in those days, as I’d yet to declare to the world that reading was important to me. I read a few things because they were assigned to all of us in school, but a few times I continued when the assignment left off. I received a few other books as gifts, or from the scholastic catalog that would show up at school now and again. But it wasn’t until I noticed a few others reading on the bus ride to and from school that it was something others might do more often.
I gained their friendship, and they let me borrow a book. This was what I would call my first novel, though that is probably just what I think of it. It was longer than those that came before, and instead of reading it off and on, not really caring when I finished it, I consumed it quickly. It might have been because I was borrowing it from someone, and I didn’t think I should hold on to it for long that I finished it in a week.
I had never read anything like it before. Mostly the books that came before it were either fantasy, or some pseudo historical tale. But this, this was Science Fiction. It had elements of fantasy, but what really caught my interest was the blend of both. I couldn’t put it down, and I sought time to read instead of watching the afternoon cartoons. I may have even rushed through some assignment I can’t remember just so I could read.
When I finished it, and had returned it, I was informed it was merely the first in a series. I gladly excepted the offer of borrowing the others, and I devoured them just as quickly. But after three books, that series was done. I wanted more, but I didn’t know where to look. My friend said he had more by the same author, and I once more gladly excepted. I read everything I could get a hold of by this author, and after a year had nearly finished everything I could find. There were a few that weren’t in the library, and a few that I couldn’t find at the bookstore, but my mother took up the challenge then. She found these lost titles in used bookstores, and began bringing home books from other authors. And I read those too. But all too soon they’d be finished, as the speed of my reading had continued to increase.
One summer, maybe a year after finishing those first three novels, my grandmother took me and my sister to a bookstore. There on the shelf were four more books that apparently continued the story from the first three. I begged her to get them for me, and after a bit of back and forth, she bought them. I read all four in a week.
I was addicted. I couldn’t go a single day without a book in my hand. The worlds they transported me. The lives of these characters. They moved me like nothing ever had before. Some were better than others, and some I re-read often.
My father offered me books that he read when he was younger, and I read that series quickly as well. My family seemed to realize that I wanted more, and many of them purchased me a book or two over the years, and I read them all. I never once left a book unfinished, though some I didn’t find nearly as entertaining. Even now I find it hard to stop, even if I realize that they may not all be good.
And then one day, my uncle gave me my first Heinlein novel. Nearly a thousand pages long, he didn’t start me with one of his juveniles. I was in eighth grade. I remember pouring over the pages in-between classes, or during breaks. It was so unlike anything I had ever read before. This was something new. After that I had to get everything by this author.
That’s how I read though. I read everything I can find by any author whose book I like. I collect. Of course it took me years before I had all Heinlein’s novels and short stories, but I finally did it. I had done the same with that first author, and many that came after.
Since I was so single-minded, it made it hard to find new authors. Without my family simply buying me books they thought I might like, not focusing on the author, I would never have found anyone else to read. I thank them, and my friends who let me read what they enjoyed. And now, even after pruning because of lack of space, I still have several shelves filled with books.
And now it’s time for me to leave again. I shall see you next time.
What I’ve published
Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6
Link to the Deathship book in the CreateSpace store – https://www.createspace.com/5023771
Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks
Update: An estimated 15% into editing
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