5) Books saved me:
Books changed me, as I wrote in this article in the Sydney Morning Herald. They saved me, too. I went through some tough times – I’m not asking, and nor do I expect, anyone to break out the violins. It’s not a sob story. It might be inspirational if I peppered the prose of my life with flowery images! But I know that books helped me through some harrowing times. Winston Churchill once said: ‘If you’re going through hell, keep going’. I say: ‘If you’re going through hell, keep reading!’.
We have our own universes inside our heads. Buzz Lightyear summed it up perfectly: ‘To infinity … and beyond!’.
3) Trying to understand this crazy old world:
Whether murder-mystery or Mills and Boon, books cut a slice from the chaos that we call life and bake it into something mouthwateringly comprehensible. It’s fun, sometimes terrifying, innately revealing, and frequently difficult.
2) To make a difference:
To inspire. I like the thought of someone finishing a novel that I have produced and feeling uplifted. Books do that for me and I want to do it for others.
1) Because I have to:
Yep. I have to write. It’s not a choice. If I don’t, I wilt. It took me a long time to realise this. I wish I’d known earlier – I probably did deep down. I’m glad I know now.
Jonathan K Benton