If you’re a regular reader of this blog (or someone that I’ve spoken to for more than five minutes) then there are two things about me you probably know. The first is that I have a lot of opinions. The second is that I have a vagina. Sometimes my vagina and my opinions collide, and this is one of those moments.
There’s a strange kind of fear around the idea of meeting ones heroes. I think it’s probably because we spend so much time building these people up in our minds that the reality never truly meets with the expectation. I’ve never really had much time for ‘heroes’. Certainly, there are people whose work I’ve enjoyed, people who I’ve often dreamt of becoming. But my fascination with them never lasts long. When there’s so much out there to be read, watched, listened to and enjoyed, who can waste that precise time focusing on the creator. I’d much rather bask in the glory of their creations.
I do stupid things fairly often. In year nine, I attempted to change a lightbulb by myself and ended up slipping off my desk and breaking my ulnar and my radius while simultaneously shifting my wrist. Another time, I wrote my friends address on a banana and put in the letter box because the internet told me that as long as the address was correct the mailman would have to deliver my banana. My point is that despite the fact that I generally like to consider myself a person of average intelligence, I’m still prone to embarrassingly-regular bouts of stupidity.
As an amateur writer, I am constantly coming up with new ideas for stories or blogs. The note section on my phone is filled with obscure one-liners and vague ideas waiting to be utilized. I’ve gotten into the habit of carrying a small notebook with me wherever I go, and dashing down whatever ideas pop into my head. Generally, they’re fairly obscure ideas that need to be heartily developed before they even come close to making sense. But sometimes, they’re massive ideas that have so much potential I can’t even believe they’ve come out of my brain.
I think that there is a common misconception surrounding children’s literature that it is somehow less worthy of reading time than fiction written for adults. But, I think anyone who has spent some time exploring the genre of fiction for children would tell you otherwise.
I lied a lot as a kid. I think it stemmed from my paralysing fear of being in trouble, or disappointing others (I am a people pleaser, after all). I was usually caught out when I lied though, my downfall lay in the elaborate nature of the stories I told. I would begin with a simple enough lie, and then build on it until it was too ridiculous to be taken seriously.
The ability to make a permanent record of a temporary thing is an amazing gift. It’s something we all do on a regular basis, we pull out our phones and take a photo of whatever we please, we snapchat our double chins and record moments with the click of a shutter. Think about it, never before have humans had the ability to press pause on a moment, to relive an experience through more than just memory. The technology we have now presents us with a unique opportunity to expand our memories, an external hard-drive to the computer of our brains.
The Lion, the Witch and The Wardrobe from the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S Lewis is undoubtedly one of my favourite children’s books. My mother, father and grandfather read it to me when I was little, and I’ve read it many times since. The wolf chief of police Maugrim from the BBC adaptation used to fuel my childhood nightmares. The new film, released in 2005 instantly became a favourite. So, you can imagine my joy when we arrived at the Fairmount hotel on the shores of Lake Louise in Alberta, Canada. The mountains that surround the frozen lake look exactly like the mountains that the White Witch points out to Edmund on his first visit to Narnia. She says to him, ‘see those hills, my house is between those two hills.’ And there the adventure begins.
Dr. Seuss was a cornerstone of my childhood. When I think back of my younger years I have vivid memories of both my parents and my grandfather reading me our large collection of Dr. Seuss books. Dr. Seuss’s stories are an aspect of my childhood that I often enjoy revisiting. When the kids I babysit let me read them Hop on Pop before bed I’m usually more excited about it than they are. When I visit my parents I often flick through our old copies of The Sneetches and The Sleep Book. So, you could say that I spend a fair amount of my time thinking about Dr. Seuss and the important part he played in my childhood.
Mobile devices have become deeply embedded into our culture. Previously, when speaking about technologies effects, it was assumed that each users led two lives, one on and one off of the screen; we assume the existence of different worlds, plugged and unplugged. Now, it is uncommon for us to think of our time as separated by our technology usage. Generally, we have some form of mobile device with us. We are always contactable and always ready to respond. Why is it that we have begun to seek gratification from a screen rather than in physical form? What is it that has tethered us to this technology?