In the past three years, I have become a reader. I am proud of this fact.
All through school and growing up, I was always a non-reader. I just was not interested in wasting time reading when I could be watching television and/or playing with my Barbies.
Sure, I participated in Bookit, but I never got very far with it. In high school, I was always adamently against the required readings for Advanced English. Sure, I still read (most of) them, but I usually resented these books and hated them simply for the fact that I was forced to read them.
But really, look at some of the crap I was forced to read:
-Siddhartha (worst book ever! I was also supposed to read this in college, but I used SparkNotes instead)
-A Seperate Peace (this one was alright, I suppose)
-The Old Man and the Sea (seriously?)
-1984 (was kind of interesting, but only in parts)
-The Jungle (who doesn't love learning all about Socialism in the early 1900's?)
-Things Fall Apart (oh good, I always wanted to know about wrestling in South Africa)
-The Scarlet Letter (a classic, but I chose to watch the movie instead)
-Ellen Foster (this one was good because it was like 4 pages long)
-Jude the Obscure (I really don't know what this was about, I didn't bother reading it and dropped the class before school started)
There are plenty more crappy books I was supposed to read in college too, but I've blocked them out.
Looking back on it, the reason I didn't want to read these was not only because I was being forced (and most are really awful), but I also didn't want to read them because at the time it seemed like so much work. I just was not interested in reading at all.
But then a few years ago I watched the first two Harry Potter movies with my brother. I had heard of Harry Potter, but I wasn't really fascinated with it until I saw the movies. My brother suggested if I liked the movies, I should read the books.
I lazied around a while. Finally I was visiting a friend in Durham and he had the first three Harry Potter books and told me I should borrow them. I did, and I was instantly hooked. I read the first three within a month and borrowed the next two from the library. The sixth book came out two weeks before I finished the fifth book, so I got to read that one too. It was really nice being able to read the first six books all back to back.
After finishing those, I found myself needing to read more. I stuck to what I wanted to read, pirate books. I read a whole lot of pirate books, and a few romance novels. Then I kind of slumped off of reading again.
As the time for the final Harry Potter book to be published drew near, I decided to reread all of the first six books. This is when I became truly hooked on reading.
After finishing the final Harry Potter book, I have been pretty much reading something or other ever since. At first it was Patricia Cornwell novels, because that's what Jared already had. Now, I find myself pretty much reading anything that's a novel. I like the suspense books mostly.
I like being a reader. It's cool. And it makes me feel smarter. This is why JK Rowling is so deserved of my thanks. Thank you.