It's Summer! And with this vacation heavy season, this will
be our last 'live' Sunday Musings until September.During the next few weekends we'll revisit
some of our past Musings. Thank you for your continual support.
In the meantime, what do we have for you this week?
How does a writer convey the summer season to their readers
without saying...it's summer?
How do you do this within genres, SF or Fantasy, where it
may not be so obvious?
Let's get musing and have a grand and fun Summer vacation
I don't think using the word "summer" is a bad
thing, but it's just one adjective- I never use it as a noun. For example
talking about a "summer rain falling, quenching the torrid
heat."The key is to describe both
the environment and how characters react to it. As a speculative fiction
writer, you do have to go an extra distance making sure of exactly what the
seasons are. In my current series I've kept the seasons generally akin to the
seasons in the Northern Hemisphere, but they're a lot milder, unless you travel
to certain regions. In other fantasy, seasons might have totally different
meanings.The clearest example is
probably the Song of Ice and Fire books by George RR Martin (and the Game of
Thrones TV series based on them) where each "season" lasts for
multiple years. He spends a lot of time explaining how that works, and it's a
central concept to the novels overall.
In my family this would be the "official" first
BBQ of the season. Dad's gone ten years now, but hubby keeps the tradition
going. Now I need to send a sorry to our Muser moms, I think I missed their
As you can probably tell we're incorporating parents...ours
and us as them...whether in role of parent, aunt, uncle, grand, birth-adopted,
guardian...any and all parental roles...yes, siblings as parents count
too...into this week's Musings.
Why or Is it important these role models read to, with,
around those under their care?
Did yours? What did you get from those experiences?
My father and aunt, his sister, were great readers, and my
brother and I grew up seeing them with books in hand.There was no question that books are an
important part of life.So was the
telling and sharing of stories.Although
we could not afford a large collection of our own, there were always a few
volumes around, which both my parents read to us and encourage us to read on
our own.As a result, I could do that
before I went to school.We also
patronized the public library regularly, generally on a weekly basis.It was a great environment for a budding
Yes, I think it’s very important for anyone who is taking
care of a young child to read to them. Studies have shown that children who
have had the experience of reading aloud, especially if they were held close or
on the lap of the parent or caregiver, learned to read much faster and enjoyed
reading more. Reading aloud to a child gives them the ability to know all about
the parts of a story and a book and this is also very important in learning how
to read. As a teacher I needed to assess the ability of children in terms of
knowing the parts of a book. Sadly, there were children who did not know much
of what they needed to know. These children start with a handicap and are the
ones who are always behind the other children. When a child has the experience
of hearing the words in a book they associate them with meaning and when it is
time for them to read they are more able to understand that the letters come
together with their own sounds and create words. Of course learning vocabulary
is also important for learning to read and children who have been read aloud to
have the experience of hearing words they might not have heard in their lives.
They are introduced to concepts they might never have experienced either. The
more vocabulary a child has when he or she comes to school the more likely they
are to be able to learn sight words. Sight words are the core of reading and if
a child has enough of these it becomes easier and easier to read. Phonics is
helped too when children know the sounds of letters and words.
My parents always read to me and I was brought up with a
love of books. I always had books and I remember I had my favorites too. I had
one that my little fingers wanted to read so much it got so dog eared. But I
loved it and wanted to hear it over and over. When I became a parent I started
reading to my children very early in their lives. When they were babies they
had cloth books so they could hold them in their hands and read themselves.
Later they each had favorite books they wanted read over and over. As we read
after they had heard the book read to them over and over I would leave out the
last word in a sentence and they had memorized the words so they could fill
them in. My older daughter became such a voracious reader she was getting five
library books at a time and finishing them every three days.
Reading is a free activity, though picture books, if you buy
them are an expense. However, you can get them free at the library and give
your child that experience as well. Being around books and having that
experience of sharing is also something that helps children become more
familiar with books and brings them into the world of reading. Then books
become a valuable thing for children and reading a pastime they will have for
the rest of their lives. It is important that children learn to love reading,
because unless they have learned it early it will not be there as they get
older. Children need to have the foundation of loving books so they will be
readers for their whole lives.
I've got to say that I'm pretty status-quo; my role
models/parents are actually my mom and dad. They've always taught me
right/wrong/what's polite/etc. They're also really, really, really weird but
that's another story. When I was really little, my mom tried to get me to read
a Winnie the Pooh book. I screamed, cried, and rolled around on the ground
shouting, "You're killing me!" Needless to say, they were not pleased
but kept trying and were more than surprised when my kindergarten teacher told
them what a good reader I was! I also memorized the alphabet but had no idea
what it meant, and would memorize some stories by heart to goodnaturedly (I
don't even know if I was being sneaky or just thought that's what reading was)
make my parents think I could read words on a page. Who would've thought I'd
grow up to be a writer, huh? Basically, you never know and it's really
important to teach kids to read. There's that saying how, if you don't like
reading you just haven't found the right book. My older sister doesn't read
hardly at all (she even likes the phrase "I read a book. Once.") but
has read and reread the book The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein
because it has two of her favorite things: dogs and races! Reading opens
worlds, whether for learning or relaxation or whatever it is your looking for.
It's a form of escapism and betterment. I don't care if you like manuals,
graphic novels, poetry, novels or dictionaries (guilty. I've read the
dictionary or a thesaurus for fun more than once); enjoy it!
You could say books were worshipped in my house. Granny, Dad
and Mum all read. We had books, but with the exception of Christmas and
birthday presents the number didn't really change until I started to study
English literature. However, there were libraries. The school had library
boxes. The high school had a library and there was a public library in the
town. The village was served by a mobile library. My mother helped us
selflessly with our reading homework and did read to us at bedtime. My own
children adored bedtime reading and often sat in on the younger ones after they
were too old to have a story themselves (they said). I discovered my elder son
had 'got it' the morning he told me how the novel we were reading ended. 'I
finished it after you went downstairs, mummy.' One of life's precious moments.
My father never read to me or my brother.He was a Presbyterian minister and must have
felt that having to listen to his sermons every Sunday was plenty.His office was full of books, however.
Our mother read from a book of Bible stories almost every
night when we were young.This was the
only book she ever read from, but it did not stop me from going to the library
and finding out a few things on my own. She had a beautiful voice.I remember the stories vividly.