Thursday, October 2, 2008

But Audiobooks are for Losers.

One Word: Audiobooks.

This word has rocked my world.
Being an avid reader, I have always brushed off audiobooks and looked down on them as a cop out for actually reading a book. Thus, I never even considered audiobooks in my small sphere of existence. In fact, I'm sure at one point I was quite literally thinking, "Audiobooks are for losers."

A couple weeks ago, my studio-mate introduced me to them anew. It was Pride & Prejudice that broke me. She lent it to me via flashdrive, as I was complaining, "I just want to read!" during studio time. Alas, I had work to get done and there was no time for reading.
Now, I've read Pride & Prejudice numerous times--Yes, the actual text--and it's one of my favorites. So while working on my library design (Ironic, no?) I got to listen while someone read me one of my favorite books. I was double duty at that point, but not quite sold-- I mean, I already knew P&P, and had already read it. Would listening to a new book be the same as reading it?

My studio-mate, an avid fan of audiobooks, lent me another; it was Eldest the sequel to Eragon by Christopher Paolini. So I listened. I listened in studio during endless hours of work. I listened during my long walks across campus, and the long walks to my car. I listened at home while making, then eating my lunch. I listened on the drive home to visit my family over the weekend. I listened on the way back so I wouldn't fall asleep.
Today, I finished. I can now say, as I download Brisingr (the third in The Inheritance series) that I'm sold. I officially love audiobooks.

I still love to read- but it's a time dedicated past time, you can't really do anything else while you're reading (with the exception of eating). I love to read, but I don't have the time. Now, though, now I can fill my head with literature every other moment. I can immerse myself in the world of Fiction. My head is filled with turning pages.
When I think about it. Literature (books) have taken over almost every aspect of my life at the moment. Is is it a sign? Multiple signs? Should I switch majors and just write?
I work at a Library. In studio, we're designing a library. I now listen to Audiobooks. I have lots of assigned reading to do. I'm trying to write a story. I blog about my life.

Words. Literature. Fiction.

This world is a crazy place. But at least we have people's dreams written on paper- we can lose ourselves and leave this world that we've plagued with our problems and melt into a world that someone has created for us- where the conflicts of good vs. evil and antagonist vs. protagonist rage on and consume our thoughts and consciousness.
I'll take it. In fact, I find myself constantly and fervently wishing that I could somehow fall into my own fiction, where magic abounds-- and there is a world to save.
It brings me to a thought, or a question rather.
"If faced with the decision of all our Heroes and Heroines, to leave and embark on an adventure that just might cost your life, would you leave everything behind and cross over into a while other world? A new reality?"
This is one of my favorite questions for people. I'll often pull it out while we're hiking and talking, or during a game of Questions.

Given the chance-- would you leave your family and everything you love to change the world? It's often the hardest decision our Heroes make in literature. It's easy to say yes, but really- would you? The answer to this says a lot about who you are, what you believe in, and (if you answer honestly) what you really want in life.

Somedays I wonder, if plunged into a world of magic and fiction- would I come back? If I did, would I be able to stand a normal world?

Cut to Me standing in an empty parking lot with strains of Augustana's "Boston" playing.

Maybe someone would write my story. To put it poetically/cliché I guess in a way, we all write our own stories. Which could be exciting if you live in a narrative kind of way. Though I must admit, I'd fall asleep listening to my audiobook...