Rambling about Inspiration
I’m having one of those literary nerd days. You know what I’m talking about – where you read something and want to squee about it to everyone around you but sadly, everyone around you wouldn’t know what you’re talking about. It’s not to disparage my co-workers, it’s that they aren’t literary nerds. I can’t go running up to the front desk and proclaim, “So, in this series of letters I just read between Vita and Virginia, they were talking about Radclyffe Hall and the Well of Loneliness and the protests that were being planned in the literary community because it was declared obscene! The world doesn’t exist in a vacuum. They were real people!” My co-workers would look at me, smile, and go back to reading Fifty Shades of Gray and when I rolled my eyes and tried to introduce them to a real book about real relationships, I’d be reminded they like the smut, they like the story, and I need to get over myself.
So. Okay. Yes, I do. Of course I need to get over myself. Not everyone thinks that the love story between Vita Sackville-West and Virginia Woolf is inspirational enough to base not one but potentially two novels on it. In fact, the fact that I am taking so long to work my way through my copy of the letters of Vita and Virginia gives them cause to say things like “Oh, you’re still reading that? I’m on my third reading of this.”
To wit I say good for you. Shades of Gray has actually inspired one of my co-workers to research words she didn’t know. Words I use in every day conversation but it was stuff she really didn’t know. Good for her! She isn’t ever going to want to read through this collection of letters. There isn’t any smut, even if it is one of the most passionate relationships I’ve ever had the privilege to indulge in. Twilight has served its purpose for another co-worker and her reasons are ones that cannot be argued with. If a book is just distracting enough to keep you sane during a dark time in your life, I’m not going to argue with you. Come on, I watch Silk Stalkings at times. I know bad storytelling.
But I am a literary nerd. There are so many things out there that I haven’t read, so many books literary nerds like me are supposed to have read. I know the stories well enough that I can fake it in conversation with people much nerdier than me, but there is a lot out there I haven’t read. Yet, when I find something I want to ramble about, so often I am not around people who share my passions. So, of course, I turn to the internet. Here, I will find people just like me and right now, I just want to squee because if I had a time machine and could go anywhere, it would be here. Thoughts were changing, people were throwing off things that had bound them for so long. No, times were not “better” but to sit in a circle with these authors who shaped so much of modern thought … I honestly do not have the words for how it would make me feel. Except, you know the movie Midnight in Paris? Yeah. That’s what it would be like.