16 May Reading
I am no longer reading to procrastinate. Now, it is an assignment. By giving myself permission to read, read, read, I find more writers to take direction from. Oh, how I love to read! Books, words, letters – I read them all. The beauty of the words and how they are formed on the page and sometimes the way they attach themselves to my heart and mind is so satisfying. I need to write words down. I need to reread them. Sometimes, I want to see the characters that the writer has created. I want the characters to take a form on a screen or in my mind. I then research the author to learn how they translated the book into a screenplay and then a movie. I need to see how the words grew into life.
Was the character in my mind close to the actor or actress on the screen? Sometimes, the actors or actresses are better than the character formed in my mind. Sometimes, I see the movie, and then I want to read the book to see if the words on the screen came to life as they did in the book. Where did the ideas for the storyline come from? I love when the author leaves a trail in the book that provides a hint to the origins of the story. Where did he start? What is true? What cities rose from the ashes of his mind? Or, what science began in the corners of a piece of truth and grew into more? So much of what we read or see on the screen can become what we live. I remember watching Star Trek when I was a child. I loved the gadgets. I loved that people could travel by just standing in a circle, and someone could push a button, and they could appear in another place. They could touch a small device on their shirt and talk to someone on another planet. Do you realize we can do some of these things now? The characters were able to see images on a small screen then. Back then, we could not. I only had a transistor radio. I had no way to see an image the size of a stamp on my wrist that could move and produce sound. Today I am wearing a watch that can tell my heart rate, the weather tomorrow, where I am in the world, play music and images.
Gene Roddenberry described and produced all of this in the ’60s before we could hold these things in our hands. He was reading comic books where people were imagining all kinds of things and writing them down. Reading becomes writing. Writing becomes reading. We continue to recycle these stories for our families and ourselves. The joy is in the reading and the telling. Even if we cannot hear or speak, there is a way to communicate. If there is one word that translates between two people, a story can be told. At the beginning of Helen Keller’s life, Anne Sullivan found the word that broke through Helen’s darkness. This word helped them tell their story. In the beginning, the beginning of all there is, there was the Word.