Share A Story: Trading Lives and My First Love

As part of this week’s Share A Story: Shape a Future literacy tour, bloggers around the web are invited to participate in daily writing prompts (P.S-There are PRIZES).  While I’m not officially competing for one of the prizes, I thought it might be fun to participate in some of the writing prompts, just to share a little bit more about me and where I’m coming from.

So.  Today, I’m responding to this question:

Who was the first person from a book (real or imagined) that you wanted to be when you were a child? Why?

The first character I can remember truly wanting to trade lives with was L.M. Montgomery’s Anne Shirley.  I first read Anne of Green Gables in the fifth grade and took an immediate liking to Anne herself.  Something about this character struck a chord with me.  Her passion for reading, her dream of teaching, these were all familiar. There were parts of Anne that I envied, too. Her ability to speak up for what she believed in (something I, as a painfully shy 5th grader, could not fathom), for example.  Or her seemingly fairytale home on Prince Edward Island.

Then there was Diana.  Sweet, pretty, boring Diana who never quite understood Anne’s imagination, but followed her on every crazy whim, despite her misgivings.  Diana, who was everything a best friend should be– loyal, supportive, and even brave when it came to standing up for her “bosom buddy” Anne.

Upon finishing Anne of Green Gables, I quickly picked up the next book, Anne of Avonlea, and then Anne of the Island, so that over the next few months, I worked my way through the entire series.  And along the way, I met my first literary crush Gilbert. How could Anne NOT recognize what a handsome, compassionate, perfect catch she had in Gilbert Blythe?  While I thrilled in their eventual union, my 12-year-old self  fell in love with Gilbert long before she did.

Such was my love for Anne and her life that I’ve since read everything by L.M. Montgomery that I could get my hands on.  An author who can first pen her words in 1908, capture the heart of young reader in 1992, and remain a strong part of that reader’s memory in 2011 is truly timeless.

And Gilbert?  I might still have a crush on that man.  Just a little.

Now it’s your turn!  Please share!  Which character did you want to be?  Who was your first literary crush?  C’mon, we’ll keep your secret!


2 thoughts on “Share A Story: Trading Lives and My First Love

  1. I can’t really remember as a kid which character I wanted to be except for Bilbo Baggins in The Hobbit. I was a short kid and would have loved to have proved my worth in a great adventure like that!

    Later on in college, one of my literary crushes was definitely Anna Karenina, but I’ll come clean and admit there was something about Molly’s bawdy chapter concluding Ulysses which could raise one’s temperature as well…

  2. Isn’t it amazing how these characters stick with us? Tolkien, Tolstoy, Joyce, or even L.M Montgomery couldn’t possibly have known how their characters would teach readers so individually and so many years later. Makes me wonder who my 2-year-old’s crushes will be…or whether they’ve even been created yet!

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