It sounds like a dirty word, doesn't it? Bibliophile. And it's funny that it does, that it sounds like something to be ashamed of,...
There are things that I feel like I SHOULD love, but haven't quite got the hang of loving, you know? Like nature. And cooking. And movies with Brad Pitt in them (don't hate - he's just a little too smarmy for my tastes, m'kay?). I mean, there are things I love about those things. I love LOOKING at nature. I love when I make up a recipe and it tastes scrumptious. And Ocean's Eleven? Awesome movie. Love, love, love.
But my love of books trumps all that. Big time. I actually typed the word "books" into a google image search and scrolled through pages and pages of book pictures for a length of time I'm kind of ashamed to admit to.
I recently attended a writing conference down in Utah. There are a lot of reasons I abandon my family once a year to attend it. 1) So they'll appreciate me more, gosh darn it! 2) Because a happy mommy is a . . . well, a happy mommy. Enough said. 3) All my closest friends live hundreds of miles away from me (and yes, I'm starting to take that personally). 4) I draw bucket loads of inspiration from the classes taught there. And 5) THERE IS A BOOKSTORE THERE. And it is full of books written by people I KNOW.
And books are lines, drawn between people. They connect us through a realm of shared experience that goes beyond the norm, beyond the every day. And the best books, the books with depth and meaning practically spilling off their pages, they connect us in the BEST ways.
So I packed a VERY large bag for my trip, and left it half empty, because of the stacks of books I knew I'd be bringing home with me. And yesterday, I lovingly dusted my newest bookshelf, and rearranged the books on it to make room for my newest books. I can see them from here, and my mind floods with memories of each journey taken, each life lived.
I share those journeys with countless others. And when I write my own stories, that is my great hope for them. That they will mean enough, matter enough, to connect people through shared journeys.
VanderVision Tip of the Day: Read.
About author: Kimberly VanderHorst
Kimberly Vanderhorst wrote her first book when she was seven (it was totally awesome, but the world isn't ready for it yet), and her next when she was twenty-seven. When asked to account for the intervening decades, she likes to suggest the possibility of alien abduction with as straight a face as possible.