Hello, my name is Stephanie, but Steffi will do as a nickname, and I am the face behind She’s a Bookworm. I am a 53 year old wife, mother, grandmother and great grandmother who has recently joined the “Empty Nester” community.
As with most self-proclaimed bookworms, my love for reading started early. I can remember snuggling up to the closest available family member and jamming a book into their hands and waiting to be transported to another place. Of course, the beginning for me was any and everything Dr. Seuss. While we got a lot of the Jack & Jane books at preschool, there was nothing that entertained me more than the words inside a good Dr. Seuss book. As I got older and started reading on my own, I maintained the love for Dr. Seuss, actually committing my two favorite books to memory; those being the much loved Cat in the Hat and the lesser loved And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street. Even today, I can still recite bits and pieces of each title, much to the chagrin of my extremely uninterested grandchildren, lol.
Moving into elementary school, I received my first library card in the 2nd grade. This was the first time I’d ever been in a “real” library. I was no longer impressed with our school library, as it didn’t have much that I was interested in that I hadn’t already consumed. I was hooked!! I needed to visit every week (much to my older brother’s dislike because he was charged with getting me there). I would check out 3-4 books and go home and devour them.
In those days, I was introduced to young Henry Higgins through the writings of Beverly Cleary. Henry’s character is followed through his elementary school years from age 8 to 11. Henry’s faithful sidekick is his dog, Ribsy; and his best friend is Beezus (who comes as a package with a truly annoying little sister, Ramona). I made my way through all of Ms. Cleary’s titles and moved on to another love.
During most of my middle school years reading took a 2nd and sometimes 3rd place to music and writing. It was a normal progression, as I came from a very musical background. I’d tried finding my “music niche” in elementary school, but asthma kept me from playing the flute (my first choice) and short, stubby fingers made the piano irritatingly hard (especially since because my older brother played, I want to play too). I’d settled on the violin and loved it, but I loved singing and performing even more. Publishing articles and poems or short stories for the school publication seemed more interesting than reading and books became the thing of school projects.
In high school, I was introduced to the writings of black authors, something that made my older brother VERY happy. The first book I ever read of people who sounded “just like me” was I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou. Little did I know at the time, that books would eerily have parallels to my life.
Adulthood brought many other prolific writers into my life include Reshonda Tate-Billingsley, Victoria Christopher Murray, Pat G’orge Walker, E. Lynn Harris, Kimberla Lawson Roby, Mary Monroe, Bebe Moore Campbell, Eric Jerome Dickey, and my all-time favorite, the dynamic writing duo of Virginia DeBerry & Donna Grant (I was privileged to be the first place winner of their Your Best Broke Story contest leading up to the release of What Doesn’t Kill You. My winning essay entitled
The Best Broke Summer of My Life can still be found on their blog).
Then came TWILIGHT!! My son mentioned the book in passing one day and I just happened to have grabbed it to read while at a doctor’s appointment with my mom. I was hooked once again, and I’ve never looked back. Books have brought me through good times and bad.
Now as to what my favorite genre is, I would have to say Young Adult Fantasy, but if something catches my eye, I will give it a read.
So, now you know about me, what about you? In the comments below, tell me what the first title you remember falling in love with and what is your favorite genre?
Until next time,