A few things about me that nobody really knew, until recently are, that I used to read all the time and I used to write, A LOT, when I was younger. Both stem from my love of words. I love the feeling that I get when I put my words on paper. I have always been a person, who is easier expressed through written words, meaning something I have wrote down or something I have found in a song. When I can’t read or write, I can listen to music and connect on that level. I have a hard time talking out things that bother me, but if I can get a pen and paper in front of me, I can let it all out. It stays hidden for the most part, because I don’t want everyone to know whats on my mind all the time. Some geeks have numbers that occupy their head..well, this geek has words..lots of them..all the time. So, here is an explanation about how I dove back into reading and, more recently, writing.
About four years ago, I was talked into watching Twilight.(Twilight haters: please continue. This is not exactly what you think!) I was not a fan of anything pertaining to vampires or werewolves, so this was a stretch. I don’t really care to sit down and watch movies, anyway, because most of the time I can’t sit still long enough and I can’t concentrate on it if the kids are watching it, too. I watched the movie and, honestly, I wasn’t hugely impressed, but I was told “the books are so much better, you really need to read them”. UGH, ok, the only thing that I had read in years were cookbooks, which is another obsession, and magazines. You can put these things down and tend to your kids and it won’t be frustrating! After quite a bit of “talking” me into it, I decided to give them a whirl. If I don’t like them, I can stop reading them…Right? I wasn’t into book one very long, when I realized that I could potentially have a problem! When I was younger and I would read, it was no big deal if I read all day until I was done with the book. (This is what I refer to as the “Grandma Dawn” gene, because that woman can read a novel in the middle of an apocalypse and not be phased!) The “problems” that I felt coming on were, I was already putting myself in the book. Not meaning that I was seeing myself as a character, but I was “in to it”.. it was going to be hard to put down. I was loving the story line…I wasn’t focused on the fact that I was reading about vamps and wolves, I was reading a book about an awkward girl, in a new place, that has some kind of unexplainable draw to a handsome boy. The “problem”, again, was that I was going to have a major issue with putting the book down..my whole “one track mind” took over and I needed to know what happened next. I ended up reading all four of books in the series in a week and a half…the first time.
Reading, in general, has kind of become my obsession. It turns off my thoughts, I can relax and drift off into another place for a little bit. I have “liked” quite a few book review pages on Facebook. Some of them get books that are going to be released in, Advance Reader Copies, and post their reviews and they also find Kindle Freebies to post. On several of these pages I had been reading a lot about a new author, named Colleen Hoover, and her books “SLAMMED” and “Point of Retreat”. These books are considered “Young Adult-(YA)”. YA does not necessarily mean teenager reading levels. I happen to like a lot of books in the YA genre and I have found that I am not the only 30-ish, mom and housewife that likes them! Moving on… I went ahead and downloaded “SLAMMED” and was immediately drawn in. There is something to be said about any author who can have you completely captivated with their words, within the first chapter. I felt such a strong emotional connection to these characters. In the past four years, there have only been 3 other authors who have been able to make me laugh out loud in one sentence and have me crying in the next. I flew through the first book and wasted no time downloading “Point of Retreat”. I knew when I was almost done with “PoR” that I was going to be contacting this lady…these books were, absolutely, something else and I felt the need to let her know just how much these books touched me and made me think!
To clarify, quickly, the title,”SLAMMED”, is referring to “Slam” poetry, among other things. Until this series, I knew nothing about it. I will tell you though, that I would LOVE to actually witness it! During these books, the lead male character, writes and performs “slams” and he journals. (If guys are reading this..shut up, it is not a girly thing to do! You would have to read the books to understand why he journals and I really think anyone would be inspired by a good “slam”!) What I realized while reading, was that journaling and poetry are two things that I used to do that made me feel better and I think that is why I felt a strong connection to him… because I know what a release it can be. The only difference is that people are actually hearing his poetry…that is something that no one will ever get out of me! They are mine!
Holy sidetrack..moving on, again…I went ahead and privately messaged Mrs. Hoover. I know that she has to have fan mail flying in from all over and that she probably doesn’t have all the time in the world to sit and read it all. I felt better knowing that I sent her a note letting her know that her words unlocked something in me and I wanted to thank her for that. Hearing back from her was not an expectation, especially after reading the Bio on her blog ( that I signed up for updates for immediately!) that stated she has three young boys and, at the time, a full time job! I was amazed, really..I’m positive I have some kind of “hero worship” thing going on for her! lol…All of my e-mails get sent to my phone and I don’t check them as they come in. That day, I wish I would have! SHE WROTE BACK!!! AND, it wasn’t just some generic “thank you, now bug off”..It was a genuine thank you and she encouraged me to journal and write again. We messaged back and forth a few times and it was so neat to be able to talk to someone that is famous on her level, but so down to earth and actually a lot like me, personality wise! When I got an e-mail update for her blog, which stated that she had signed up to give out Kindlegraphs..I was on it! Guess what? I was her first one! That was the icing on the cake to my whole “I love what Colleen Hoover’s words have done to my mind” thing!
Because of how I guard myself, I don’t think that there will ever be anyone that really understands my reading obsession and what it does for me. I know that it drives my family nuts that I always have my face glued to my Kindle, but there are worse things I could be doing I suppose! I get more out of these words than any one could ever imagine…it is truly something of happiness for me!
P.S. Look up Colleen Hoover here on word press..there is a video of a guy reciting one of the “slams” that Will, main male role, does in the book! It is AWESOME! (The female leads name is Layken aka “Lake”..there is correlation.)