Sunday, April 25, 2010

Reading for the pictures...

As a kid I remember pouring over my grandparents National Geographics, but I probably was in my thirties before I read a whole article. Curled up in the corner of the couch at my grandparent's house I would study every single photograph and only reading the captions....only read the captions, the all white pages of text were quickly flipped past in search of more pictures. Isn't there a joke of reading Playboy for the articles? Well, we did get in trouble at a friend's house for pouring over the pics of an African tribes, where the villagers weren't wearing much clothes, but that is a different blog.
I would do that with all my families books, living surrounded by big beautiful books from Time/Life covering all aspects of the West...Didn't read the text, looked at the pictures and captions. Especially remember a big big thick book on the Civil War-

full of Brady's first photographs of battlefields, with the dead still where they fell and haunting tin types of idealistic soldiers heading off to war.
Never was much interested in nature articles- flora and fauna- but like looking at animals...History is always what I would love to look at.
I really didn't tackle reading novels as a kid, there were a few, fantasy, always needed a romance in them. I have dyslexia, though no one called it that even when I was a kid. I wrote every letter backwards and started from the right to the left when I wrote. Still don't know my left from my right. I did get sent to the Special class for about two grades- and walked a lot on a balance beam and had a very clever Special Ed teacher, who knew I loved are, so she had me make bulletin boards, with very long phrase I had to cut out all the words and get them the right way on the board- got very good at pulling out staples from bulletin boards and trying again and again.
Wasn't a good reader at all as a kid, was in the Brown section of the SRA reading program, my best friend was in the Fuchsia Pink. Never was able to work my way up to the Fuchsia Pink. If that isn't a testament to how I still see myself...I will never be Fuchsia Pink.
Still love history, but now can BS my way into research libraries and flip through the actual photographs and diaries of interesting the Wetherills, who were the first whites to gain extensive knowledge of  the ruins of Mesa Verde. My current obsession is looking over their archive at the BLM's Heritage Center's research library.

Humm, makes me do some thinking... I still read way more nonfiction then novels today, too much white on the page- too many letters, no pictures? Watch five times as much movies as I read fiction...cause well it is pictures in motion...only finished writing, successful writing I have done is in the form of  nonfiction, done a lot of that with teaching and in writing scripts- school plays, church events all produced and  audio bible stories-which were produced with sound effects by Group Publishing, years ago... theater friend once told me, "You could write a script in your sleep" she is right I could, and I have- going to sleep running an idea in my head and waking up, still running it.
Is this turning into a " walks like a duck, talks like a duck, is it a duck" things? or " doesn't read novels, why am I trying to write  a novel cause novels don't have pictures what is fun in that!!! "


  1. I loved poring over all those magazines myself as a kid! This brought back memories!

  2. I used to do the same myself, just skip to all the pictures in any books or magazines. Even a few car manuals as my Dad was a mechanic! I suppose that as artists, it's the pictures that draw us in!

    Great post, and do you WANT to be fuchsia pink? You can be any colour you like now, in fact, all of them :)

  3. Glad I am not alone- and I really don't want to be "fushia pink" it is just that "thing" from my childhood, that little nasty whisper I have in the back of my head.