Oh, To Read Like A Girl Again

     Michelle Slatalla kicked-off 2009 with a The New York Times essay that catapulted me back into childhood days lived inside a book. In “I WISH I COULD READ LIKE A GIRL” Slatalla yearns to experience again the joy of childhood reading, of living for a time in someone else’s universe. She observes in her three daughters (ages 11, 17, and 19) the transition from “allow[ing] the novel to carry them so effortlessly from one place to another that for a time they truly don’t care about anything else” to shedding “the childhood gift of being able to suspend disbelief” as they become critical readers. I saw myself in Slatalla’s youngest child who “comes to the dinner table wearing the hollow-eyed, devotional expression of someone who has just glimpsed something wonderful in a distant land.” Slatalla reminds me that my goal as a writer is to create a story so engaging that young readers can live for a brief time inside my imagined universe. May 2009 be a good year for reading and writing.

Published in: on January 1, 2009 at 10:36 am  Comments (1)  
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  1. Good post. I just finished reading one such story. d.M. Cornish’s “Lamplighter” took me away to the world of Half Continent and didn’t let go until the very last page. Now I’m longing for Cornish to write the next book in this wondrous series.

    You mention in your post that, “my goal as a writer is to create a story so engaging that young readers can live for a brief time inside my imagined universe.” I’ve glimpsed your writing, Cynthia, and it already is very much just that. 🙂

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