Might and Main Monday. Why Read? Katherine Paterson. Karen Hugg, https://karenhugg.com/2018/07/09/why-read/ #inspiration #quotes #books #whyread #reading

Might and Main Monday: Why Read? Katherine Paterson

I’ve been thinking about why fictional books matter. Do they? Why read? What would happen if we could no longer read stories? Fiction readers would live like people who choose not to read. A world of the here and now only, a world where one doesn’t join the dreams of others. There are a lot of people in the world who do this, a few who I know well. They are often happy. So if a person experiences the real world in the now, what have they given up? I’ve wondered a long time about this.

What they’ve given up is, simply put, the ability to grow. In a bookless world, a person’s life includes less wonder and awe. It includes less insight, less adventure, less knowledge, and less relaxation. Before I get too high on a horse, I’ll share children’s writer Katherine Paterson’s take on reading books. It makes me even more dedicated to being not only a writer, but a reader.

[Books] “allow us to enter imaginatively into someone else’s life. And when we do that, we learn to sympathize with other people. But the real surprise is that we also learn truths about ourselves, about our own lives, that somehow we hadn’t been able to see before.”

Why Read: Children

You can see how this implies why it’s important for children to read, so they can learn empathy, so they can grow into better human beings, so they can connect their experiences with others’ experiences. Books help children grow their conversational skills and vocabulary. It expands their worldview.

So this week I hope you will take time to enjoy your life by reading a story. If a boss is being mean to you or a spouse isn’t being supportive, you can turn to a book. A book is always a friend that’s waiting to connect.

What are your favorite books? Let me know in the comments below.

For more Monday inspiration, click here.


  • Bryan Fagan

    For reasons unknown I stopped reading for years and years. One day, in my late 20’s, I had a bad fall and broke a few bones. My girlfriend brought over some books. I think she was tired of hearing my complaints. Figuring I’d humor her by reading a page or two I found my imagination doing things it had not done in years.

    It was refreshing, exciting but most of all it made me wonder why I stopped reading to begin with.

    Not only did I read more books I started to write. Fast forward years and years later I signed my first book contract in May. Reading is powerful and necessary if one wants to succeed as a writer. Without books we’re lost and who wants that?

    I see you’re from Seattle. I was born and raised in Skagit County. I miss Seattle and my little home town. You have an excellent blog.

  • Karen

    It’s so interesting how life takes its turns, isn’t it? That injury gave you an unexpected gift. Congratulations on your contract! And thanks for the compliment! Keep us posted on the release of your book. Cheers.

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