Friday, May 15, 2009

Follower Friday: Margay

Let's welcome another Follower to the convertible today!  (And any of you other Followers interested in being featured on a random Follower Friday, let Michele know.)

Born to Read

Tucked away in an old photo album somewhere there is a picture of me holding a book in my lap, intent upon the words on the page. Two things stand out about this picture: One, the book is upside-down and two, I am only about two years old at the time the picture was taken. But I didn’t let either of those facts deter me. For all intents and purposes, I was reading that book.

I think it is safe to say that my love affair with the written word began at the time that picture was taken. Once I actually learned to read, I quickly moved beyond the grade school primers to more challenging chapter books. My appetite for reading became voracious and I eagerly awaited the arrival of the book mobile at school or – wonder of wonders – the Scholastic book forms. How I loved to pick out books just for me that I could read again and again, if I so desired! I could never get enough of fairytales, knights, and romances. And then there was the library, where I could borrow books any time I wanted, thus relieving some of the strain on my mother’s wallet from my addiction. Was it any wonder that I would eventually get a summer job in the library? Or that my love of the written word would translate into writing my own stories?

Now, as we embark on the digital age, reading is taking on a new persona. Who would have thought twenty years ago that one day, we would be able to read a book on a hand-held computer device? Or a cell phone? That we would be able to scroll through pages rather than leaf through them? Or that we would become addicted to a new thing called blogs that allow us to get up close and personal to our favorite authors – or that we would eagerly await tweets from them every day? In this age of instant gratification, we are witnessing the emergence of book kiosks that offer the ability to print out books on the spot rather than browsing through bookstores, and a little amazon of a company is changing the face of publishing day by day. And there is a resurgence of the love of reading in teens due to a little phenomenon called Twilight? Suddenly, it’s cool to read again. Does that mean I’m ahead of the game because I always did?

So whether I am leafing through pages or scrolling through them, vicariously living the life of a Regency spitfire or a modern vampire, or even swapping books with my teenage daughters, one thing remains constant. I was born to read!

Book blurb: Nora Kendall believed in angels once, but then her brother died of cancer despite all of her prayers, shattering her faith and illusions. Now, years later, she reaches a turning point in her life where her faith will be tested once again when she becomes embroiled in a battle between an angel of light and an angel of dark where the ultimate prize is Nora's Soul.

Margay Leah Justice


Kylie said...

Margay, I vividly remember sitting on my dad's lap when I was about four, while he read the comic section of the newspaper to me. The memory is vivid--I can recall what chair we were sitting in and where it was situated in the room (my mom was a big one on moving furniture around!) But mostly I remember staring at the page and wondering when I was going to learn to read. I was so disgusted in kindergarten when I discovered they wouldn't teach us there!

I was ahead of my time, LOL. These days kindergartens are much more academically demanding. But when two of my children expressed a desire to learn to read in preschool I brought home materials and taught them, because I could still remember what that desire felt like, and how frustrating it was not to be able to do it!

Betina Krahn said...

Welcome, Margay! And what a fabulous book cover! I'm heading over to your link to investigate.

I was a young reader, too. And fell in love with books and stories early on. And, Oh, the joy of bookstores! I don't think the printed book will be out of fashion in my lifetime. . . but the day is probably coming.

Betina Krahn said...

Whoa. . . and I love your blog about readers' rights and RESPONSIBILITIES, especially as regards copyright! That should be pasted (with appropriate permissions and attributions, of course) all over the net!

Hey, guys. . . take a look at Margay's blog!

Keri Ford said...

I liked reading when I was little, but I didn't like a wide variety. I had a couple books that I liked, and that was it!

Michele Hauf said...

I never really began reading voraciously until middle school (whoa, those books about witchcraft in the library!). Haven't stopped since.

I was thrilled when my daughter practically taught herself to read by age 4. She kind of lost the reading bug through school, but lately she's been asking me for good books to read. Yay!

Glad to have you here today, Margay!


Kathleen said...

I can't remember reading before I went to kindegarten, but once I was in grade one, it was love at first site for me and books. I would be at the public library everyweek getting a new book to read. I was so happy when are school put in a library, I was in there everyday. Books and I have a real love affair. They filled a lot of empty hours for me lately. SO thank you to all you great writers out there who let me indulge my love affair.

lois greiman said...

Thanks for joining us Margay. Always so great to hear of other avid readers. I spent so much wonderful time reading Tolkein to my kids. It really boosts their creativity. I'm sure it did the same to yours because your book sounds really intriguing.

Kathleen Eagle said...

Welcome Margay!

Great book cover! I noodled around your blog, found mention of your publisher and checked out the site. Interesting stuff!

I'm so impressed with the way the schools are teaching reading these days. My preschool granddaughter is beginning to read, and the first grader is way more accomplished than I was at the same point in school. I've been a voracious reader since I would say 4th grade. That's when I really dove into books strictly on my own. That's when I started paying fines for overdue library books. I knew all the fairy tales and Mother Goose by then, but on my own I remember mythology becoming an early favorite along with Nancy Drew, Classics Illustrated, and biographies and history for young readers.

My grands do wonderful things on the Disney site (Anyone into Pixie Hollow?) but they love a printed/illustrated book for serious reading. The first grader is into "chapter books" now.

Kathleen Eagle said...

I meant to say, I've never been a fast reader. My saving grace in college was that I remembered everything I read. I know I could read faster--I often make myself do it--but I'm naturally slow and methodical. Just call me Tortoise.

Cindy Gerard said...

Welcome Margay and i second what every one has said about your book cover. Gorgeous!!

Middle school was when I really began to be a voracious reader. I would make a trek to the library and bring back every Black Beauty type book I could find, shut myself in my tiny bedroom, use a blanket and a couple of yardsticks to make a tent over the bed and there, in my little cocoon, I would read away the hours, lost in another world.
I can still remember that feeling of being lifted away by the story. I've been reading ever since.

ForestJane said...

Mom tells a story about the day she knew I'd learned to read:

I was apparently an obnoxious child, *g* so when we went grocery shopping, she'd point to ANY sign near the entrance: "Sale! Potatoes, 49¢ per pound" but tell me it read, "Little girls must ride in the basket."

Then one rainy day I finished reading it: "When Wet. I'm not wet, Mommy, I'm dry."

The sign she'd pointed to actually said, "Caution, floor slippery when wet."

I've been reading ever since. :D

Helen Brenna said...

Hey Margay! Thanks for posting today! Love the cover of your book!

I remember my daughter at around 2 doing the exact thing you described at the beginning of your post. She was sitting in the rocking in her room, book upside down and making up a story. So cute!

Like Michele's daughter, she ended up not continuing with that bug, though I think she'll come back to it some day. My son's the big reader of the two. He'll be the first one to come home with the Kindle in our family.

Margay said...

Kylie, I remember feeling frustrated by the pace at which we learned to read in first grade. I was always wanting so skip ahead, which I continued to do throughout my academic career. I was that voracious with my reading - even with text books!


Margay said...

Betina, thank you for the lovely comments and for visiting my blog! Not only was I an early reader, I was an early writer, too. I remember always "writing" my own stories and collecting "research" for them at an early age. I even went through a period when I was in junior high where my sister and I wrote plays together - and then performed them for the neighborhood kids on our front porch, which was the perfect stage.

Margay said...

Funny you should say that. I went through the same thing with both of my daughters. They learned to read early - my older daughter was reading at a first grade level half-way through kindergarten and then proceeded to come home and teach her sister everything she learned. So by the time her sister went to kindergarten, it was pretty boring for her! Then they had a period where they slacked off on the reading, to my chagrin, but thanks to Harry Potter, Twilight and manga, they are both heavy readers again. Yay!

Margay said...

Keri, I had a few selective books when I was younger, too, but as I got older, the need to read everything I could expanded.

Margay said...

Kathleen, I know what you mean about the love affair with words - it's been my most constant relationship (besides family) throughout the years!

Margay said...

Thank you, Lois. I do find my creativity boosted by reading favorite books, watching favorite movies and/or tv. And I've had the distinct pleasure of passing that love on to other people, lately, from my writing. One of my nephews, after reading my book, not only was inspired to read more (reading wasn't his thing), but to write his own as well!

Margay said...

Kathleen Eagle, I'm not a real fast reader, either (I can be if I need to). I think it's because I like to savor what I'm reading. I think it's wild that kids in preschool are being taught to read now! When my younger daughter went to preschool, she learned how to use a computer, too, so that's pretty wild, too.

Margay said...

Cindy, that's the same way I always felt! Even when my reading took a more serious turn (in my teens, I read The Diary of Anne Frank, Go Ask Alice, Lisa, Bright and Dark, I Never Promised You a Rose Garden), I was still swept away into another world.

And thanks, everyone, for the cover comments - I love it, too.


Margay said...

ForestJane, that has got to be one of the funniest things I've read! Your mother probably rued the day you learned to read! There's just no stopping you once you have that knowledge.

Margay said...

Helen, too funny! The crazy thing is, to this day, I can still read upside-down! And I think your daughter will come around when something sparks her interest - it happened with both of mine just when I resigned myself to the fact that they never would.

My Blog 2.0 (Dottie) said...

Hi Margay!

What's odd is that I don't remember a time when I wasn't reading. I read the funnies with my dad when I was too small to read alone. Then my parents bought a set of encyclopedias, and with them came a set of children book -- there ten books in that set. A book of fairy tales, modern classic, poems...I started reading that set and just never quit. Then, I went to my grandmother's house and she had stacks and stacks of romance books, I could have as many as I wanted, I was at the ripe old age of 10. Now, all these years later, I'm still reading and loving every minute of it. I have boarded out from romance to action/adventure, paranormal/urban fantasy, and mystery, though romance will always hold a special place in my heart.