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Literacy Narrative

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In summer, after I finished my class 10 ICSE boards and we had two months to do nothing, was when I first really got into the habit of reading books of the mystery and thriller genre. I remember sitting in my living room around twelve o’clock, near the window, from where I could clearly see how hot the sun was, and I thought that I was lucky that I did not have to go outside. I switched on the Air Conditioner and lay down on the sofa, the one next to where my aunt and grandmother were sitting and gossiping. Normally, I would love to eavesdrop, but I even found that boring. I could feel the cool air of the air conditioner on my face. I would normally not be in the living room before eating my lunch, but my brother (whom I share a room with) decided to sleep, so I couldn’t play something with him and even my parents were in their room watching television. I was so lethargic that I didn’t want to move or go out with my friends to do anything. Neither did I have anything to do, nor did I want to. I was bored of watching movies on my phone as well, which was so shocking, because it was the only thing I had been doing for weeks. Therefore, I decided to give reading a go even though I have never been fond of reading,

I thought about the time I was younger. The reason I didn’t like reading was, because I’d be merely irritated at the fact that I had to paint a mental picture of what the author tried to describe in so many words, rather than just watching that part in a movie. Finally, then came the problem you have, if you are hyper-active, to do literally anything other than what was in front of you. To add to that frustration, my family is filled with people who read books on a regular basis and also encouraged me to do the same by making-up horror stories of what might happen if I didn’t read books. Moreover, from a young age my elder brother read books so much, that my parents wanted me to read books like him. I would finally give in and try to read a book my brother was reading. However, the books he read were so advance for me that I “read” without actually registering anything, so I would fail to understand any symbolic references that the author was trying to make and basically hate reading books even more.

However, after my exams I realized that I should have read books because of the many advantages it had on the reader. But no matter what I did I just couldn’t read a book it wasn’t engaging enough for me. Determined to do so I decided to go to my father for a strategy to read books. After a while, we finally came up with something brilliant. I knew I wanted to do a minor, if not a major, in film in college because I had always been fascinated by the artistic nature of movies and how they were made. Great movies are often based on story books, so we thought that even great directors must read books before making that into a movie. Therefore, my father suggested that instead of just picturing, I should try visualizing it the way it might have been portrayed in a movie, or how would I re-create that particular scene the way it was described in the book. 

As I tried thinking about which book, I should start reading earnestly with, I remembered that there was this one book “The Silent Patient” that had really good reviews online and had even started reading but stopped because I had exams coming up. However, even after the exams ended, I never really got around to finishing it. I decided that I would it a go. I realized that with every turning page the story deepens, and I started thinking about how I would make these words into reality. It was going pretty normal; I was not that driven by the story itself, but my interest in making that one book into a movie. However, as I reached the end, everything changed. I questioned the entire imaginary movie I made in my mind. I was just impacted more from a book than a movie. The story was written in such a way that it felt like everything was happening in the present, however, it was a mixture of the past and the present. I thought about how I could portray that in a movie, in a book people can’t see what the characters are wearing, but in a movie they could and that would change everything, they could look around the scene and know that it is not the present. Following this I tried to read even more thriller books with surprise endings just to see what I was capable of imagining and re-creating, as I read it. So, even though it was my interest of recreating it into a movie, I started reading books whenever I got the chance. 

After this moment, not only did my perspective change on reading books but it did in my writing as well. We had to write an essay in our school language exam paper. I would always try get creative and attempt the “story essay”, but I was never really able to weave a proper story together. I never wrote original stories, but since I watched so much television, I always tried to mix in characters and stories from different movies into one short story. However, it didn’t always turn out the way I exactly wanted it to. I would fail to express myself, as I lacked the words to describe anything, even though I had visualized that same thing in my mind. But, after actually comparing how a scene was shown in a movie and the way it was described in a book, I finally gained the skills to write much better stories than I did. Moreover, after reading common scenes like describing a particular setting or a conversation between two people took place, After, reading these books and how a conversation takes place and how it is written, how a murder scene was portrayed, I finally understood how to write a good story the way I had visualized it in my mind. 

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