Wednesday, 15 September 2010

In which I make your acquaintance

I bid you all welcome and am delighted to make your acquaintance.

This style of writing, strange as it may seem, really does start to become second nature to anyone who immerses themselves long and thoroughly in the literature of the 19th century. I started out when I was 11 and am now 41, so have 30 years' experience of a more leisured and formal mode of expression.

I was practically born with my nose in a book. I love to read and have become adept at getting through many of my daily tasks while reading: brushing my teeth, walking to the corner shop, making coffee. I have even been known to take a surreptitious glance at my page while sitting with my small daughter as she watches Charlie & Lola or with my baby son while he plays with his toys.

Amongst the lesser-known works of that popular novelist Mr Wilkie Collins is 'Poor Miss Finch'. The narrator, Mme Pratolungo, describes the heroine's stepmother in the following terms: 'always with a baby in one hand and a novel in the other'. I hope I resemble Mrs Finch in nothing else ('never completely dressed, never completely dry') but I rather think I do resemble her in that.

The purport of these outpourings is to share the extremely unnerving episodes which too great an immersion in the fiction of the 19th century can cause when the reader is too sharply brought back into contact with her own real life in the 21st.

1 comment:

  1. Now you've to find time to blog as well as read!! congrats on the first step....