This Alice Hoffman quote got me thinking.
So, lets operate under the premise that this is a true statement. Books are magic. Either we believe this or not, its that simple. So, lets see if we can’t make enough points to support this premise. In order to do that we have to think about why we read, what we read, and what reading does for us.
First, we look to the writer who gives us the stories we read. The creative force that generates a set of characters, a background, a storyline. If its good it will draw you in, make you think, feel, even experience a reality that could simply be another person in another city, or another being in another world. We are transported by words into a portal of possibilities. We are given the chance to experience, if even for just a short time, another life. We can be any character in any book, we can love, hate, and cry with or as that character. We can explore our emotional responses to situations we have never been in, are afraid to explore, or had never considered in the past.
Have you ever lost yourself in a book, only to close the cover and just for one second, sigh at how mundane our real world is? Have you ever taken the gall, the bravery, the sheer audacity of a character to heart, so that you have the strength to perform some task you had been putting off? Have you ever seen the maliciousness of a character and had your eyes opened to the same toxic personality in someone around you? This is the magic of a book. So, in essence, a writer must not only be able to write a good story, they must weave a story into something magical. A magic that transports you somewhere else, that imbeds you into a different form of reality that can be harsh and gritty, or engage in every fantastic thought you ever had.
Books are magic, because they send idea’s out into the universe that may have never existed. It is an interesting thing, this creative force. We, as human’s imagine so much, and it seems like whatever we can imagine, becomes a possibility. Human flight? Written as fantasy first and drawn in the minds of artists. This creative force turns into an interest, a question of reality that is funneled through the minds of thousands, hundreds of thousands of inquisitive minds, How many things have been conceived of in literature through the years that eventually became a reality? Undersea travel, flight, spaceships? What about medical technology? So much of our world has been shaped by the creative mind that conceives the impossible, only to find it possible in the future.
Dare we say there is a connection? Would that not be considered magic then? To speak or write words that mark the minds and hearts of those around them, that brings about change and the transformation of ideas and concepts that seem impossible only to become reality? I only have to consider this blog, the computer I am typing on, the fact that when I hit this button, the information I am sending will instantly be available to the world on invisible waves of energy. Before any of this was reality, we avidly soaked up these concepts in classic literature and science fiction…
So, I know where I stand on the matter, what say you all? Do you believe that books are the only true magic in this world?