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Books, Glorious Books

I have bookcases! My books are unpacked (finally), and sitting proud on the shelves. Every time I walk into the family room I smile. There’s something about seeing the vibrant colors on the spines of the books that just makes me feel good. Books to read for the sheer pleasure of reading them and books for studying the craft.

It’s sort of like what came first the reader or the writer. Truth be known that’s a hard question so I called the one woman who would know and remember perhaps accurately then I would. My mom. Her answer? “You did both.”

Okay, so that’s not what I was looking for, but as we continued to talk she reminded me of how many times a book (probably a little Golden Book) would be read to me and then I’d try to write my own story. Especially if I didn’t like the way the book ended. I mean really the chicken running around saying the sky is falling just bothered me. Even at an early age I wanted to tell the chicken to wise up, the sky couldn’t fall. 

So I wrote my own. Well, I scribbled what I thought were words to make my own stories until I realized that one, I couldn’t read that well just yet, and two, I didn’t know how to spell the words in my stories. Again, mom or my best friend who was older than me and could already read and write chapter books.

We’d sit and I’d tell my story. It was great. I’d changed characters and plotlines and make the big bad wolf beg for forgiveness or my favorite was when I was older and wrote the continuing tales of the Wizard of Oz. Who knew back then there were already books out there with other story lines?

The cozy teenage mysteries of my youth were the best. I loved Trixie Bleden and wanted to so bad to be in the club with Honey and Jim. And I couldn’t wait for Trixie to get old enough for Jim to kiss her. 🙂 Yep, many of you may have guessed it. I wrote my own scenes. Very sweet and tender scenes where their hands brushed each others and Jim stared deep into Trixie’s eyes as her legs became wobbly. He’d tuck the strands of hair that were free from her ponytail back behind her ear. And then ever so slow he’d lean forward while her eyes closed and…kiss her on the cheek. Hey, I was only ten years old. Kissing on the lips wasn’t allowed just yet.

What I remembered as I unpacked books and lovingly sat them in their new place of honor is I’ve always loved to read and I’ve always loved to write. I told Science Guy that now our new home felt like a home and not a house.

So, what about you? Since we’re all readers and many are writers, I’m sure you’ve got books. But do you feel a sense of rightness when you see them? When everything else in the world is going crazy are they the things that can help you escape if only for a little while? And what about writing? Are you like me? Did you every want to change the ending of the stories of your youth? 

Writing Wishes and Plotting Dreams,



13 Responses

  1. Sometimes I wanted to change the endings, but most of all I wanted to reread the parts where people fell in love. I must have read the Laura Ingalls Wilder book about her in Almonzo faling in love about twenty times. I know the horses names (Skip and Barnum), the dress she wore (sprigged calico) and all their long courting rides. For the longest, I wanted a sprigged calico dress.

    So romance writng was right up my alley.

    As to books, yeah, they’re a comfort. I have shelves of them all over my house, piles beside my bedside table and several tucked between the seats of my car.

  2. I wasn’t much into reading when I was younger and when I started reading, I never had the thought to change the story. It wasn’t mine, who was I to change it? BUT after I’ve started writing, then I began thinking, I would have done this differently.

    I like looking at my bookshelves, when they’re full. when I was still finding books to fill my selves, it was kinda sad to look at.

  3. Amy – I still have some of the books I read as a child and love them today as much as I did then. A sprigged calico dress, wow, that would have been really cool.

  4. Keri – Science Guy bought us extra bookcases so I’ll more room for more books. He knows me well. He has all these science books and I told him he could have some shelves or even on the bookcases. I mean really, a little geek and a lot of romance go well together. 🙂

  5. I did the same thing, Vicki! What ever part I didn’t like whether it was a book or a movie, I’d sit down and rewrite it, or rearrange it. LOL I still find myself doing the same thing, only more detailed now and it usually leads to a new storyline for a book.

  6. Melissa – you must be my sister at heart. 😉 I’m so glad to know I wasn’t the only one doing this to the books I read.

  7. I LOVED Trixie Beldon and crew. Sometimes I wonder about re-reading those books today and I wonder what my reaction would be. They were so different that what kids are reading now.

    Sadly, I remember one day in the 4th grade when I was trying to tell my teacher about the TB book I was reading (I was so excited by the plot) and the teacher (Mrs. B) said, “I don’t have time to listen to you. I have 30 other kids in this class. If I gave each of them one minute to tell me something, I’d lose an entire half hour.” I was scarred for life! LOL Even today I sometimes rush through telling a story and I wonder if it goes back to Mrs. B.

    I always wanted Trixie and Jim to kiss too. In my mind, not only did they kiss but he may have touch her boob! LOL LOL

    Thanks for the memories of TB and group

  8. I wrote and wrote and wrote — filled up composition books with carefully printed words, because my mother wouldn’t let me use the typewriter until I learned how to type properly, but it never occurred to me to change other stories. How fascinating! All my stories were about girls who lived interesting places, like farms in California or ranches in Nevada — I lived in Hawaii, which didn’t strike me as nearly so fiction-worthy. Oh yes — I also wrote about girls living on more remote South Sea islands, who went to school via mail correspondence courses. I thought that would be a great improvement to going to school at a boring school — even one, like mine, that was held in quonset huts used as additional classrooms, and where you could go to school barefoot unless they were doing construction at the school at the time. And where (two blocks from one of the best beaches on Oahu), our PE teacher had us practice swim strokes in the dirt-and-grass playground under the ironwood trees. We thought she was crazy, and she probably was.

  9. ArkansasCindi – LOL, I loved that. Not the teacher part, that part is horrible. But then not all teachers are really meant to be teachers.

    I’m glad you enjoyed the memories of TB.

  10. beppie – omg, your school sounds like it was very cool. Perhaps not back when you were there, but now looking back. Yeah, wow. I love the story where the girls went to school via correspondence courses. I can so see a YA in that. 🙂

  11. I have always wanted to change stories around which I have read, Vicki. That has been since I was a kid, and I began reading R.L. Stine’s GOOSEBUMPS series. Then, I began writing my own stories since I couldn’t change the stories I read, and it just gets better. 😉

  12. Jamie – Ooh, R.L. Stine scared me in the beginning, but then when you’ve had a few odd paranormal things happen in your life things like his writing tend to do that.

    Go figure, I finally gave in to my inner person and now write paranormal. Thought it would be a light paranormal, but no, the first book in the series started light and got darker as it went along. Book 2 and 3, yeah, dark.

  13. Vicki, I am starting out writing VERY dark paranormals. I have always loved horror movies too-but not the bloody ones. I never liked those kind. I love the ones about ghosts, vampires, demons, etc.

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