I recently had the pleasure to read Katia NovetSaint-Lot 's "Amadi's Snowman" which tells the story of a Nigerian boy who dreams to become a trader that at a certain point discovers the wonders of books. Katia has published on her blog a meme on "first time writing experience" and I'm very happy to answer these questions too. Also as Kabilana aims to promote reading and literacy projects...
Do you remember the first book you ever read on your own?
I cannot remember the very first book but one of the first books that really impressed me and signed my passion for reading was "Around the World in 80 Days" by Jules Verne. Was a huge volume with a blue leather hardcover with colourful illustrations. I was very jelous about it, you can imagine at night after reading, I was wrapping the book with a red woolen cloth putting it under my pillow , just to be sure to find it the next morning. I borrowed that book it from my aunt and I remember I never returned it back!
Do you remember how you felt?
I felt very committed in the achievement of understanding a story by my own, I felt I was travelling with P. Fogg and Passepartout on the balloon visiting different countriest , smelling differents shents and dressing soft coloured clothes. I realized that you could see places and things without being anyewhere. I found that words were extraordinary instruments to express ideas and feelings...I was even jelous that others would have the same thought.
Do you remember a book that you read again and again as a child?
I love re-reading books. One of the book I kept on reading and re reading was Pinocchio by Carlo Collodi. It was and it is an extraordinary book. Surely I understood its deep meanings more as an adult then as a child, but I was fascinated by this story of a piece of wood becoming alive, laughing, enjoying, surprising, loving, suffering, with its innocence and curiosity.
Why that book? Have you read it again as an adult?
Pinocchio is a very helpful book either for children either for parents... I read it several times as an adult and shared it with my daughters twice, we read it together, every evening for a period, they also read it at school and they all enjoyed as well as I did. They followed Pinocchio becoming a donkey in the world of donkeys populated by all the children who didn't want to read and study, disappointed because they know that reading and studying is something marvellous and could not think that Pinocchio and his friends were ready to live without those things. I had the opportinuty to feel their emotions in front of big important themes. I believe that Pinocchio is one of the greatest books ever written, there is this beautiful metaphora of being something else and becoming a human being thank's to hardship, love and awareness.
Why do you read?
I read as I need to. Books are my hoxygene, I need them for my soul and my mind in the same way I need food for my body. Raeading allows me to live different lives, to confront emotions and ideas, to travel without physically moving, to experience things by different point of views and to enrich my identity through other's lives. Also without reading I could not be a writer!
Amy Bowllann, Martha Nassibou, Susan Wingate, Max Babi, Cat Bauer,Kathryn Fitzmaurice, Susie Sawyer, Naomi Hirahara and anyone who reads you are tagged... would you like to continue the tour on First Time Reading? Then just cut, paste and answer these questions on your blog/site.