On this St Valentine’s Day, when it’s traditional to make a concerted effort to show someone you love them, I thought my blog this week should pay homage to my love of words. In a more obvious way, that is, as one could say that it does this every week.
Whether it’s reading or writing; consuming fact, fiction, poetry or prose, there’s just something about words that presents the world in a new light – in a way that nothing else can. Words focus you in on the specifics – they reveal secrets you might otherwise never see or think to ask about. They draw you into other worlds – real and imagined – and introduce you to characters bizarre, ordinary and obscure. Words broaden the mind, create empathy, excite and enthral – they conjure up images that will never be the same from one mind to the next, and they teach us, inspire us and encourage us to ask questions.
Words make magic with language, are as colourful as any paint, and can be clear, abstract or laced with hidden meaning.
It’s a conundrum to ask if I prefer reading or writing, but I’d have to say, if made to choose, that reading would win out. Reading inspires me in my own writing and there’s so much more of value out there to read than I’m sure to ever produce. My bookcases at home are spilling over with books, their numbers being added to often from impulse buys at second-hand bookstores, high street book shops and anywhere else that books can be found.
If you have a love of words, then I believe your life will always be enriched by it…