Piled in corners
Stuffed in shelves
They lie still
Falling into ruin
Sealed away in their covers
Are words written long ago
Hidden in their pages
Are worlds made long ago
Each one is different
Each one was once new
Each day I walk among them
Each day I pass through their pages
Leaving this world
Of pain and hurt
Of sorrow and regret
And escape to another world
Where inner demons can be fought
And purpose can be found
These are the worlds I live in
Not in the pages of sports or celebrities
But in the world of elves and swords
These are the worlds I choose to live in
As I am sitting here with my feet aching from a long day of unloading a trailer-tractor / semi truck for work, I wonder what to post. At the same time, I am also watching Star Trek: Voyager.
My mind drifted away and I thought about all the stories I have read and watched. Some I remember seeing while others I can recall with clarity every single scene in the story.
This got me thinking: why do some stories stay with us while others wither away and become a forgotten little bit of information on some dusty shelf in your mind? Is it popular demand?
I would have to say no to popular demand simply because popular demand can change as fast as you can change the television channel. Plus, you really can’t compare Harry Potter to the Hunger Games with The Box Car Children as the standard of comparison.
I can also promise you that it isn’t because the book was written by a classical author. I say this because the Odyssey and Beowulf appear as foggy thoughts of men dying, monsters living, and avoiding fate. Great works of literature they may be but they did little to capture my imagination. Instead, Lord of the Rings fueled my mind and actually is responsible for my desire to create an original work.
Then could it be said that stories created from imagination is the reason why some stay with us while others do not?
Again the answer is no. While many days were spent tucked away in a world of imagination, the ones that really opened my mind and broaden my concept of war and the world are two autobiographies of World War Two tank commanders. One is of an American serving in the European Theatre of operations. The other is of a German serving on the Western Front.
So what is the key ingredient?
The key ingredient is you.
Did you learn something about yourself? Did you feel for the characters because you relate to them? Did they inspire you or did you become terrified of their deeds? Did you become emotionally when you read about loyal Sam being dismissed from Frodo’s side? Or did you become disgusted with pink-fluff-ball Umbridge?
At least that is what I believe. The stories that stay with us forever are the ones where we have become invested in them.
What do we do on a rainy day? Well, you could do homework, sleep, play in the rain, or read. I tried to do homework and was too distracted.
Then I looked out the window and thought to myself, “I wish I could read.” I laughed then tried to read the words from my textbook. Ten minutes later and I hadn’t gotten past the first paragraph. I wanted to continue on like a good student. I decided not to.
Instead, I curled up in my bed and opened an old favorite of mine: J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring.
This is the work that really got me into Fantasy sci-fi and made me fall in love with writing.
It is my hope that every child (and yes, I am still a child) gets the chance to open a book that changes them as much as this series has changed me.