Remembering Why We Read
Listening to Ms. Phillips speak about her work was a true source of inspiration for me. It reminded why I'm so passionate about books and why I want to be part of the publishing industry. An event like this transforms reading, an activity that is typically a solitary one, into something so much bigger than oneself. Sitting in a room full of people who had all been moved by this writer reminded me how powerful reading can be.
A blog posted by Len Vlahos, "The Signed Book," provides further insight into the value of an event like this. In the blog, Vlahos writes about his experience as a featured author at Anderson's Bookshop "Pre-Pub Club" for teens and teachers, where he discussed his book The Scar Boys. About fifty people attended this event, thirty of them teens, and he describes it as a "magical night." But the responses he received from the attendees were exceptionally powerful and moving to him. One person even wrote, "Thank you for writing this book. Now I am not alone." He explains how inspiring it was for him to receive such incredible feedback from people who connected to his work, saying, "That even one person was able to feel a sense of connection or belonging because of something I wrote is...is...words fail me."
I think it is so valuable for people to attend events like these. Even as someone who loves reading and whole-heartedly believes in its value, I had fallen away from it in the midst of a busy schedule. But now I'm making an effort to find time each day to read, even if my pace is slower compared to what it used to be. Sometimes we just have to be reminded why we fell in love with reading in the first place.