People that love to read want to pass that love along when they become parents. I know I did. When I was pregnant with my daughter, I unboxed all my childhood favorites – Charlotte's Web, Stuart Little, A Wrinkle In Time, The Little Prince, The Real Mother Goose, Grimm's Fairy Tales, among others. I also got The Cat in The Hat, One Fish, Two Fish, Horton Hears A Who. Well, all Dr. Seuss and a crap load of Little Golden Books. I kept all these and added more when my son came along.
I read to my kids nightly before they were able to read. I
nagged encouraged them to read more than what
was required when they were learning and once they'd mastered it.
Basically, I cast my pearls before swine because neither one would
read one word more than necessary when is school. My daughter did
enjoy the occasional Archie comic and my son would pour over video
game manuals, but that was about it. I was sad that they didn't want
to get lost in an amazing novel or learn about historical figures
and/or places, but at least they were reading something!
Fast forward several years to when my daughter found Wuthering Heights. She began to actually read the classics that were assigned in high school. The real books, not Cliffs Notes or a movie. She now reads and reads and reads. I feel as though I did my job. It took awhile but it did take. She likes to vary her reading like I do. She may read Rebecca then something by the Dali Lama then onto Laurell K. Hamilton or Diana Gabaldon. Her love of reading makes me very happy.
My son, I felt was hopeless. I tried to get him interested in J.K Rowling when he was a bit younger. He felt Harry Potter was, “stupid.” The next attempt was books on the Vietnam war, something he had become interested in. Why bother with books when you have The History Channel was his response. I'd try again and again over the last few years with no luck. Well, one outta two ain't bad, right? Then came a video game, Skyrim.
Skyrim is one of those unfathomable things that the uncoordinated, chaos-brained, can't understand. The type of game my son plays with ease and skill. He tends to discuss games like this with anyone who still has a heartbeat, one of them being me. During one of these discussions, I mentioned that Skyrim sounded like George R.R. Martin's seven kingdoms in the Fire and Ice series of books. I casually tossed him the first book. Not hoping for much can you imagine my total delight and joy when he began reading it! WOOHOO! Winter is coming ...
I handed him that book two weeks ago, he is now on the third book. He is going to be inconsolable to find out he may have to wait 5 years for ol' George to get the sixth book published. But my plan is to give him Gabaldon's first Outlander book. I can overlook a few dishes in the sink and crumbs on the counter because he's engrossed with the words, the world of Mr. Martin. There's something to be said for delayed gratification and a long ago job well done.