When I was in school, and much too young to be thinking about a career, my aptitude test came back saying I should either be an English teacher or a priest. I was a little disturbed, because I didn’t like my English teacher and at the time I was up to things that were decidedly un-priestly. But in a way the test was right, and so here I am.
My conversion took a while, as I went from consuming science and history simply as a way of stuffing information into my head to relishing a well turned phrase or plot twist for its own sake. Now I’m bibliographically omnivorous, and I’m one of those bookstore people. The book evangelist who finds something to love in virtually everything I read, because at 350 words a page, and 350 pages between the covers, there’s bound to be some gem, some bit of inspired writing that will rattle around in my noggin for days.
But who do I keep running to? In no particular order: Jasper Fforde, Karen Armstrong, Giles Blunt, Sarah Vowell, Johnathan Gash, Bill Bryson, Todd Babiak, and yes, Dickens.
If I had a wish for my blogging here, it would be to get people reading a little out of their comfort zones, because when you read safe you rarely get those wonderful moments of discovery. I’d also like to bring back some of those lost treasures I’ve encountered in my years among the stacks, because no book is old if you haven’t read it. And then I’d like to retire to a plot of land up north that’s large enough for me to build a trebuchet. Because trebuchets are practical as well as fun.