Oct 19, 2012

{Blog Tour: Guest Post + Giveaway} for Five by Christie L Rich

Seeing Night Reviews is the next stop in the Five Tour for author Christie L. Rich who is here to talk about her latest novel Fie and a discussion about Why Read? Plus! an awesome giveaway you dont want to miss out on! Stay tune tomorrow for my review of Five.

Why Read?
With so much going on in the world that demands our attention, some might ask, “Why read?”  After all, there are plenty of movies, TV shows, video games and social media to take more time than a first grader has to spare.
    The answer to that question is undoubtedly personal for every reader.  I read for a variety of reasons.  I might be tired of the same old sit-com or reality based series my husband has latched onto.  I’ve never really gotten his attraction to reality shows.  I’ve got enough reality in my life to last five.  The funny thing is, my dear husband used to be an avid reader as a child.  For whatever reason he lost his love for the written word, and I’m hoping that never happens to me.
    I’ve learned to never say never, so I’m not going to say it couldn’t happen to me, but at my core is a desire to explore.  It’s one of the main reasons I read.  When I open the pages of a book, whether on my ereader or in paper, I’m expecting to go places and do things I never would in real life.
I don’t know about you, but I can’t really dig out my old Barbies and play make believe anymore, and I used to love to do that when I was a kid.  As an adult, reading has allowed me to unlock the part of my mind that craves making things up.  Whether I’m the one writing or reading a book, I’ve never found a more enjoyable pastime.
    I recently read a how-to book on writing that dealt with the science of why our brains crave story.  The science really was fascinating, and I wish I had the studies available to look at myself.  I’m a little weird that way because science usually fascinates me, but the gist of the concept is humans like to learn without taking risks.
    If you’re an avid reader, I’m sure you’ve experienced this yourself.  Your body has a visceral reaction to words.  You’re heart races, your palms sweat, your breath catches in your throat.  And why?  Because the human mind visualizes words.  You may not be able to conjure an inner movie, but your mind makes a connection that might as well be a front row seat.  Pretty cool right?
If you are like me, this is exactly why you read.  Stories take us places we could never go, and if we connect well enough to a story, it allows us to become someone we would never be.  The truth is we expect quite a bit from stories.  Even though we all have similar reasons for reading, we’ve all experienced a different life.  Our very nature makes us unique, and that is the greatest thing about books.  We each can read the same story yet have a completely different experience.
    Not everyone is going to like the same book, and we all like books for different reasons.  We may find a protagonist irritating, yet the storyline keeps us turning the pages.  I’ve read a few books like this in my time, where I’m rolling my eyes at every mistake a character makes thinking that, unlike me, they should be perfect.  They shouldn’t make the same kind of mistakes I would, but is that realistic?
    If our brains are wired to learn from stories, how would it help us to have a perfect protagonist?  I don’t think there could possibly be a perfect protagonist anyway.  After all, over twenty one thousand people on goodreads hated Harry Potter.  I can’t fathom such a thing because I am one of those who love him.  Harry wasn’t perfect by any means, and I think that’s what made his story incredible.  He overcame the odds even when it looked impossible, and isn’t that what we all hope for ourselves, for our loved ones—to overcome impossible odds?
    I’m drawn to good versus evil stories more than any other type.  I like to see the underdog win, and maybe that’s because I’ve felt like an underdog myself at times.  I want to believe in good overcoming all.  It’s part of who I am.
    As I’ve come to understand what I’m looking for in a book, I’ve realized I want to feel good when I’m done reading.  At the end of the day, I want the world to be okay even if it isn’t mine.  I don’t necessarily want to learn major life lessons.  It’d be nice, but it isn’t the main reason I read.
I read for enjoyment.  I read to feel, and I read to think.  I love books that make me question my beliefs.  And I’m pretty sure there isn’t a safer environment to learn in.  Reading can transport us to different worlds, but it can also help us understand another way of thinking.
    It’s the closest thing to mind reading I’ve ever seen.  To be able to delve into the inner workings of another mind fascinates me, and it’s part of the reason I would rather read than just about anything.  Writing trumps reading, but only if I’m ready to write.  My mind has to be in the proper place, which is rather inconvenient if I’m behind on a deadline.  I still love it because even if I’m stuck in one scene, I can move onto another one until I know the answer to the problem I’m facing within the story.  This usually happens when I don’t trust my characters enough to tell me what happens.  I over-think things and start to doubt my ability to get them through to the end.
    What I’ve recently come to understand is my characters don’t need me to get them through the story.  They need me to let them tell their story.  Writing never really gets easier.  The blank page can be intimidating if I’m the one talking, but when I let my characters live their story, everything works out just fine.
    My reasons for reading might not be the same as yours, but I’m pretty sure our desires are similar.  Reading helps us learn, but it also gives us a chance to step out of our own minds for a bit, to think differently.
What reasons do you have for reading?  I’d love to hear them.

Rayla Tate’s life is about to turn vertical…again. As if it wasn’t bad enough her mother disappeared under questionable circumstances leaving Rayla to be raised by her aunt in a horrendously small town. Her overprotective guardian is determined to ruin Rayla’s life. She refuses to let Rayla out of her sight or out of the state. Provincial living might be what her aunt demands of her purposely sheltered niece; but, Rayla has other ideas. In a desperate attempt to follow her dreams she flees the safety of her home and runs away to college with her best friend toward a bright future in the art world.

However, excitement over her newfound freedom turns into terror when she is chased by a mysterious stranger on her way to school. When his motorcycle suddenly morphs into a fire-breathing pegasus, Rayla questions her sanity. Worse, the man riding next to her stirs a burning desire in her soul she has never known or could have ever imagined. Using all the will she owns, she manages to resist the compulsion she feels; yet, as he disappears into the night, she is certain he hasn't gone far.

Rayla quickly dismisses the encounter to her overactive imagination. She is determined to settle into her new life, yet the images and feelings of that night still haunt her. To make matters worse, her aunt seems to be in on the act, insisting that Rayla will soon be hunted by a pack of fae lords for a power over the elements she never knew she possessed—a power that could change the world. Quicker than she ever thought possible, she finds herself surrounded by stunning men that all seem determined to win her heart. Why does she feel drawn to each one of them? More importantly, what dark power do they hold over her? Rayla must quickly learn to fend off these beautiful and seductive pursuers using whatever means necessary or find herself lost to the fae world forever.

Author Bio:
I grew up daydreaming about fairytales, and my love for discovering new worlds has never died. I am not one of those writers who always knew I would write. I thought that was what other people did until one day a few years ago, I took a challenge from a friend and typed my first words. My journey has been wonderful, and I cannot imagine a day where I would ever give up writing now. My love for reading is what fueled my imagination in the first place and still does. When I am not writing or reading, I am enjoying family time with my husband and two children. We live in a quiet community under the Wellsville mountains in Utah, and I am so thankful for the rich life I have been blessed with.

My Links:

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  1. I loved your post. I have totally given up tv and only read now. I love the imagination in my own head over reality tv and other shows on tv.

  2. Thanks, Kelly! I'm glad you enjoyed it. I know, right? I'd rather be reading or writing than just about anything!

    When you watch something you're seeing someone else's imagination. It's usually better when I let my own mind fill in the blanks :)

  3. Another awesome post, Christie. There are few things I'd rather do than read.