albionidaho: (Default)
It was summer, and I was six. It was early evening, probably just after dinner, and I was sitting in my parent's room on their bed, Indian style, facing the window that looked out onto the backyard, pastures and fields. My father walked up behind me and handed me a large black book with the words "The Stories of Ray Bradbury" exploding from yellow, orange, red and thistle-colored thick streaks of light.

I'd seen the book amongst the hundreds of hard and paperback books on the massive shelves in the living room, but had never thought much of it, other than the colors. I had thought about the colors--I had liked the colors.

I opened the book and paged through it. I considered starting with the first short story in the collection, "The Night," but instead ending up paging to "I Sing the Body Electric!" instead.

I sat on my parent's bed as my father went about his business, and I read the short story, which was actually a pretty long short story for a six-year-old to read. I had trouble with some of the words (this was Bradbury, after all), but I was so enraptured with the story that I persisted and finally made it through.

And I have never been the same. I fell in love with fantastical stories that evening. My mother and I had been reading The Narnia Chronicles together since I was four, and I loved those, but Lewis didn't cause my heart to fill and ache at the same time, he didn't cause such an electrical feeling to pulse through me. It was the Bradbury collection that caused me to want to write at the very beginning, when I was so young, to actually put down stories on paper. It made me want to create magical stories overflowing with delicious words.

And it made me want to read more Bradbury. I read "The Rocket Man" the next night; it was short and seemed manageable. It was a dark piece of fiction, but still beautiful. And my Bradbury-reading exploded from there.

And so, that is why, since I was six, I have always had plenty of Bradbury lying around and have dreamt of being an SFF writer. It all began with that one book and Bradbury's magic.

Bradbury turned ninety on Sunday, and this week--all this week--is Bradbury week in LA. I've been thinking about him and how he's still writing everyday, according to a couple of his personal friends who I've had the pleasure of visiting with. I hope that I'm blessed to still be that passionate when I'm ninety.

But for now, bless Ray.
albionidaho: (Default)
Meet [livejournal.com profile] spitkitten, [livejournal.com profile] chris_reynaga, and I tonight at Hugo House for the Charles De Lint reading at 7 p.m. Charles is also going to provide music. It will be amazing!

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albionidaho

January 2012

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