My Life's Own Novel

Essay by wooleverkHigh School, 12th gradeA, September 2014

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Kadin Woolever

Mrs. Russell

AP English Literature


My Life's Own Novel

"To live is to change, to acquire the words of a story, and that is the only celebration we

mortals really know," says the character of Orleanna in Barbara Kingsolver's novel, The Poisonwood

Bible (162). Throughout my life, but in the past four years more than ever, I have found this quote to

be unfailingly true. For as long as I can remember, reading has been a central part of my life. From

old bed-time stories of magic and folklore to classroom discussions of Shakespeare's Hamlet, books

and writing have shaped me since the moment I could comprehend the English language. As a young

child the stories my parents read to me would fuel my dreams and schoolyard games, filling them

with scenes of wizards and battles. Even the books predating my ability to read were able to

immensely affect me, the pictures of dinosaurs and prehistoric beasts driving me to state proudly at

my kindergarten graduation, "I want to be a paleontologist when I grow up," as the other children

stared at me in confusion. As the years passed, my enthusiasm for reading only grew, consuming

volume after volume of books like The Magic Tree House in elementary school, and blazing through

the final Harry Potter novels in middle school. All the literature I had read in my life up to that point

is very valuable to me, although I did not at that time realize how much more I could have gained

from it. It was in high school that I first became really aware of the ideas within the works I was

reading and was able to see the delicate threads that connected them to each other and to me. Books

and writing became more...