For the Sheer Joy of It

From Writer Unboxed:

I realize this blog typically concerns itself with the “craft and business” of fiction, but I want to address instead something we seem to discuss too little.

I wrote this post before reading Wednesday’s superb piece by Kathleen McCleary, “Stories Will Save You,” in which she discussed how fiction can offer meaning and insight. Here I too discuss the value of fiction, but from a slightly different perspective: the pleasure of reading.

I grew up in Ohio, and December days were overcast, the nights were long, and snow often covered the ground. Going outside was fun for a while but so was coming back inside where it was cozy and warm—hygge, as they say in Norway—the perfect environment for reading.

“Curling up with a good book” was something that, for me, defined the winter months (and made them a bit more bearable). I remember immersing myself in Great Expectations and Pride and Prejudice and 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea and The House of the Seven Gables and Jane Eyre and Moby Dick, all those thick 19th-century marvels few of us return too—sadly, in my opinion—except in their cinematic versions. 

Link to the rest at Writer Unboxed

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