Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Harry Potter made me read with a sense of wonder instead of a critical eye

A voracious child reader who fell off the wagon as teenager, Erin Lange, the author of Butter, remembers how reading Harry Potter in a coffee shop as an adult turned her back onto reading… and writing

HArry Potter
You’re a wizard Harry! Erin Lange will be forever grateful to Harry Potter (seen her interpreted by Daniel Radcliffe in the film version of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire) for turning her back onto reading. Photograph: Allstar/Warner Bros
There was a dark period in my life when I not only stopped writing, but I was also barely reading. I certainly wasn’t reading anything for pleasure. I was in college at the time, on that cusp of adulthood where it felt uncool to read anything that wasn’t high-brow. The only books my friends were talking about were the ones assigned in school, and I found most of those oppressively boring – a chore to read, let alone discuss outside of class.

I resigned myself to the idea that, despite being a voracious reader through my childhood and teen years, I had perhaps hit a plateau. It seemed everyone else my age was always reading a level above me, which made me feel downright illiterate.

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