From the time he was itty-bitty, my kiddo always loved books — looking at them, being read to, reading them himself. Even as he grew up, he continued to be an avid reader. When he was twelve or so, while reading in the doctor’s office, he looked up and said, “This guy really sucks on point of view,” then went back to reading. (“This guy” was John Grisham. And he did suck on POV in that book.)
But now the kid doesn’t read much. There’s work. Family. Internet surfing. Computer games. Motorcycles. Music. Sleep. The avid reader is now an occasional reader, at best. DIL doesn’t read much, either — magazines, work-releated stuff, but not books. And I’m wondering what are the odds that the grandkiddo will choose to spend time lost in books when he doesn’t see his parents doing it. He doesn’t even like being read to, which just makes me sad. I have so many warm and fuzzy memories of hours with his daddy and our books.
How do you persuade people — kids, adults, whatever age – to read? Is it a love that can be passed on? How have books lost such incredible ground to every other form of entertainment out there when they’re no doubt the BEST form of entertainment out there? (No prejudice here, huh?)
My parents weren’t great readers beyond newspapers and the Bible, but I’ve loved reading since before I knew how. I was a shy kid, and had a speech impediment on top of that. Books were my friends. Plenty of stories, excitement, passion, humor (and no teasing about the way I talked). I read all the time. I practically read my way through the public library, and borrowed books from everyone I knew who would loan them.
Since I started publishing, I read less, but I don’t love it any less. I just want everyone else to love it, especially my grandkiddo. Got any magic tips?