So this is something I've wanted to do for a long time but I haven't had the time until down. This post has been months in the making. I guess I should start with the person who started my love of reading. My 6-8th grade teacher: Mrs Trumper.
She was such a huge role model to me when I was younger. Let me start from the very beginning, When I was to start Kindergarten at age 5, my little sister was born and so my mother didn't want me to feel like she was pushing me away or something so she kept me another year. So when I finally started school at 6 years old, I was always behind one year. So finally when I was in fifth grade and all my friends left to another room in the school. (I went to a small private school where there was three grades to one room. So when I was in 5th grade, my friends went to the next room which was for 6th-8th grade). I was so sad and lonely, also my 5th grade teacher got upset with me a lot as I knew the answer to every question and never gave the others a chance to answer. But since my friends were gone I had more time to study, plus I was always a smart kid.
So finally, one day I went to Mrs Trumper, who was not my teacher at this time and asked her what I could do to be with my friends. She came up with an idea that I jumped into full force. She told me I could do 5th and 6th grade in the one year and then next year I'd be with my friends in 7th grade. Which I did. It was hard, I never got to go out and play with my friends, I spent some classes by myself but my teacher was a reader...
There were times when it would be just me and Mrs Trumper, she'd be sitting at her desk and I would pull up a chair and we'd talk, she'd ask for my homework, make sure I was understanding everything and she gave a book that she wanted me to read. I don't know if the rest of the class was reading it but she wanted me too. It was one of her favorite books and at the time I just nodded, I done reading for school before, I didn't hate it but it was never something I loved. Till this book...
The Giver. I found I could not put this book down, I don't remember what she told me to read a day, probably a chapter but I remember finishing very quickly. Which was huge for me as I had two grades work of homework every night and my family owned their business that I worked at every day after school. This book sucked me in, I found that reading could be something I'd never known about. Me and my teacher talked about it and she was so glad I liked it that she gave me other books to read, like The Outsiders.
So from there it went but not not to the level it is now. Another thing that really got me going was two years later, in 8th grade, Mrs Trumper started this reading challenge, the first person who got to 20 books won. I don't even remember the prize, I just knew I wanted to be the one to win. Pretty much any book was allowed. Just nothing trashy or something that went against the religion of the school (like Harry Potter).
I read everyday, as much as I could, even when I should have been working at my parents store. I found that since I could choose the books they were even better, so many worlds out there waiting for me. It was really close in the race between me and this girl who was a freaking speed reader! I've still to this day not seen someone who reads as fast as her. But in the end, I won. No else really seemed to care, reading wasn't cool! My school was all about sports and how fast you ran, how fit you were, how smart you was. So while I did okay in the smart area, I've never been very active, so I was not very popular, even though I tried so hard to be, so I'd have friends and not be lonely.
But then reading made it all better, I had friends in those books and I could be myself without trying to impress anyone. So yeah I lost 'friends' when I stopped trying to fit in. It hurt at first but it was also freeing. So between 8th and 9th grade I found YA books and OMG it was the best thing ever! I've never looked back.
So that's my story, it's all thanks to a teacher I loved greatly. Without her I never would have started reading like I do know. Yes, my mother read but at that time in my life all my family read was the bible and books that related to our religion. My mother didn't start reading other kinds of books till I was 17, so while my father likes to say that reading is in my blood. It was Mrs Trumper. She's the one who also gave me a love of writing and if my novel ever gets published, she's the one I'm dedicating it too.
So what's your reading story? Why did you start reading?
Have a great day and as always, happy reading butterflies!