surprised witch
Surprised Witch
A good witch from the Witch-ee-poos of the Past Coven is surprised by the camera during the Johns Pass Seafood Festival in Madeira Beach Florida. The good witches were on hand to give out candy and other goodies to the little ones . Copyright by WyoJones. All rights reserved. Used with permission.

I wish I could remember THE book that transformed me from someone who knows how to read to a READER. But I can’t. Looking back it seems like one minute I was yawning over “run, Dick, run” and then I was getting in trouble for reading behind textbooks and under the covers with a flashlight.

The fictional worlds created by amazing authors was, at times, more real to me than my real world. I can remember more about the plot of a novel my third grade teacher read to us after lunch than much else about third grade.

I appear to have always had an uncertain relationship with reality. O.O

I know that at least by third grade, I’d learned the fiction could take me places well beyond the bounds of my real world. And I could take those journeys while sitting snuggly in a comfortable armchair.

I still love that about reading.

But my love of reading isn’t just about comfort. The biggest attraction for me is the magic.

When I connect with the words an author uses, I’m swept into a new place, with fun people having amazing adventures. I’ve written about some of those books here on this blog, but this is the first time I’ve written about my passion for reading. (Yes, I checked.)

I love words. I love words grouped together in magical ways. I love what I learn from them. I love “meeting” new words, or getting reacquainted with old words used in new ways.

I love words going into my head. I love words flowing out of my head and onto the page. I remember sitting in a bookstore a long time ago (but not that far away) and someone told me (IN A BOOKSTORE) that they “don’t read.”

That was probably the only time I didn’t have words.

They might as well have said they didn’t eat or sleep or breathe. How do you live in a world without reading books? Books have helped me get through some really tough times. They’ve smoothed rough paths and brightened dark days.

So you know I’m going to ask why you read. I know you do, because you’re here reading these words, so don’t give me that, “I don’t read” line. Though you can tell me what you don’t read, if you feel you must. I’d rather hear what you do read. I’d love to know if you feel the magic, too. And if you remember THE book, I’d be really impressed.

And I enter all comments into my monthly drawing for an AnaBanana gift basket ($25 value). It’s not words, but it is some yummy stuff. Which might make you say words. Cuz the stuff is great. I pick a winner the first blog post of the new month.

AnaBanana logo

Perilously yours,


This was the first time enough words flowed out of me to end up being a whole book….

“Pauline Baird Jones’ humor is exquisite comic genius! Her characters are phenomenal and colorful as a rainbow. Move over James Bond!” Suzanne Coleburn, The Bells and Beaux of Romance

the spy who kissed me cover art
Mama wanted her to find a guy, but not like this!

You can buy this book in digital and audio. 🙂

Why Do You Read?

10 thoughts on “Why Do You Read?

  • November 14, 2014 at 8:39 pm

    My love for reading started at a young age, reading Nancy Drew mysteries. My Grandma got me a library card, keeping me in books was getting expensive, and then the whole world opened up!

    • November 15, 2014 at 9:06 am

      That’s so cool! I also love Nancy and my library card was my ticket to heaven. Thanks so much for visiting!

  • November 5, 2014 at 6:50 pm

    I don’t know if I could tell you what started me down the reading path. I do remember getting The Bobsey Twins and The Five Little Peppers for Christmas – books I read and re-read many times. It may be the Trixie Belden mysteries that really hooked me. I saved my allowance to actually purchase these books each time we went to the department store where they were sold. I loved that a young girl led such an exciting life solving mysteries. And I can’t forget the very important Enchantress from the Stars – it opened a whole new world of possibilities and got me started on Sci-Fi.

    • November 6, 2014 at 4:09 pm

      I am also a fan of the Peppers and Trixie! I also used to save my money up to get favorite books. Ah, happy memories!

  • November 5, 2014 at 1:13 pm

    I remember the first book, a thin book called Charlie the Tramp. I would read it over and over, about a little beaver who decided to be a tramp, and his grandfather helped him pack his belongings and stick ’em on a pole. I don’t know how old I was, but I loved the sense of adventure, of going out into the world and finding a place to call your own.

    • November 5, 2014 at 1:38 pm

      Ah, that sounds like the perfect book to launch you into writing SF! Fun share!

  • November 5, 2014 at 5:43 am

    I had six feet of bookshelves by age 7 and I used to pull a stack of little golden books out to reread every day, but my first very favorite book that I can remember is The Golden Books Treasury of Elves and Fairies by Jane Werner Watson. It was full of amazing color illustrations by Garth Williams and the stories fired my imagination and led to a life-long love of fantasy. Later I immersed myself in Anne McCaffrey, Mercedes Lackey, Marian Zimmer Bradley, Piers Anthony and Andre Norton among many others.

    I don’t understand how someone could go through a year without reading, though I’ve heard a few people say it. I can’t get through a DAY without reading, even sick, even working retail at Christmas or on a visit to Disneyland 🙂 I need to read like I need to breathe and more than I need to sleep.

    • November 5, 2014 at 1:38 pm

      Such great memories, Beth! My books are friends that wait for me to come back and visit, they truly are. Like you, can’t imagine a day without reading! And I have no problem hosing myself by reading too late! LOL

  • November 5, 2014 at 1:30 am

    By the way, I just finished reading Steamrolled by Pauline Baird Jones – I loved it – and I just started reading Kicking Ashe by Pauline Braid Jones. I remember when I was seven I read Charlottes Web. It was the first book that made me cry. I was astounded that a book could make me cry. I considered books to be incredibly powerful things from then on.

    • November 5, 2014 at 1:37 pm

      So glad you liked Steamrolled, Cornelia! It’s a pretty crazy book. LOL I ran into Charlotte’s Web when I was older. Again, a teacher reading it to us after lunch, but I don’t remember which one. Isn’t memory an interesting thing? Books are indeed powerful things!

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