Why Reading Matters

Welcome to my website, and my blog!

I figured in my first post, I should introduce myself. And the best way I could think of to introduce myself is to talk about books.

I do not remember a time when books did not mean the world to me.

Rather than a stuffed animal or comfort blanket, I would go to bed with piles of books (and read every single one of them before I went to sleep).

I got in trouble for reading a book in second grade…during reading class.

I’m pretty sure that from the time I was five until I was about 17, the only things I ever requested for my birthday or Christmas were books (with maybe a few exceptions). The only reason that changed is because family members started refusing to get me any more and I was forced to come up with other things I wanted to ask for.

My idea of a fun activity with friends or with my family was always a read-a-thon, which I always suggested enthusiastically. Unfortunately, neither my family or friends were as enamored with this idea, and it never happened. (Not even once!)

Books were my teachers, my friends, and my lens through which I viewed the world. Reading has shaped what I am interested in and infinitely broadened my perspective. It has had greater impact on who I have become than nearly everything else in my life.

None of this has changed as I’ve become an adult. When I decided to move away from my family in order to pursue some career goals and to attend graduate school, books provided company–especially on holidays when I particularly missed my family. They were a source of consistency and comfort over and over again.

Books have taught me everything from historical events to how to interact with other people.

When I hear people describe reading as a waste of time, or as something to take up if you don’t have anything better to do, I can’t help but bristle a little. Literature has limitless transformational potential to change people, societies, nations and events. It’s not a guilty pleasure.

Books matter to me because they have shaped who I am and what I have accomplished. And to me, there is no better defense than that.

And that’s me in a nutshell.

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