Wednesday, 6 March 2013

Portal to another world!

As a child whenever things got tough I'd disappear into another world. I was blessed with an over active imagination so it wasn't very hard for me to imagine that I was really a princess who had been 'swapped at birth' and that some day my real parents would appear and re-instate me to my rightful position as a cosseted princess. Books were my magic tools, some day my prince would come. Reading a book I became the heroine, I conquered the giant, my heart broke but was mended by an act of kindness or compassion that over rode the pain that I was feeling.  In books there was a 'happy ever after'.

As the oldest of a family of 5 children, I felt a burden of responsibility that looking back as an adult I feel was unfair. Why should an 11 year old girl be expected to look after her baby sister or help clean the house or make sure that her brothers and sisters got to school on time. Books were my escape! I would often hide under the bed and read, dreaming of a life that I had seen in films or read in books. I dreamt of improving my life and 'making something of myself'. I'm not saying that my parents were bad, they were  just following the model that had been put before them when they were growing up.

Books kept me sane. They showed me another pathway, another life,  a parallel universe as it were, where you could achieve your goals and ambitions and where anything was possible! One of my ambitions was to be a writer. It's taken me a long time, but I'm now trying to pursue that ambition. This picture showing books as a' portal to another dimension' really resonated with me.

When things have been hard or when I've been going 'through it' it's always helped to read a book or write down my feelings. Whether it's been just pure escapism or taking my mind of my situation or even, quite importantly. providing me with an excuse to cry, books have been a really important part of my life.

Books help you to solve your problems, understand your problems, understand those close to you or just provide sheer escapism. By providing us with romantic figures like 'Mr Darcy' they give us  the means to immerse ourselves in a fantasy world and rise above the things that are dragging us down.  Books can help us when we're going through adverse circumstances to feel that we are not alone and that what we are feeling is 'normal'. Writing can be cathartic as long as you can deal with the consequences of other people's responses to your writings, so be careful of what you write.

I don't know at this point if I can write the next Jane Eyre or James Patterson, or 50 Shades of Grey! But I do know that as long as I live, books will continue to be a 'portal to another dimension' that will keep me feeling alive and inspired and give me hope for the future.

I'm on a pathway to fulfil my dreams. I've recently sat an exam as part of my open university degree including creative writing. I've had a poem published in my local newspaper and a short story included in a book by another writer.

If you have dreams, if you want to change your circumstances, step into the 'portal of books' and discover a world that can show you the pathway to your future.


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