Today my good friend Cindy Pon was in New York participating in the "Diversity Tour," part of a publicity junket to push her second novel, Fury of the Phoenix, which hit shelves back in March. The panel was held at Books of Wonder, a local independent bookseller in the city catering to the child and young adult reader.
This place is awesome! So many pretty, shiny new books. I sooo wish I had such a place to go to growing up. I loved to read as a kid, but never had many books in the house. This might explain why I hoard books to this day.
The Diversity Tour panel included several up-and-coming YA writers, including another friend of mine, Neesha Meminger. She's promoting her second novel as well -- Jazz In Love. I had a wonderful time meeting up with both talented ladies, and all in all it was a fantastic way to spend my early afternoon.
|Left to right: Neesha, myself, Cindy.|
One of the audience members posited an interesting dilemma to the panel members: "If you were forced to give up one forever, which would you choose--reading or writing?"
Cindy chose writing, whereas everyone else at the table picked reading. Oops. Guess Cindy and I are the fraud writers, because I also chose writing as the one I would give up if I actually had to pick one to lose.
Thing is, as much as writing is a joy and quite the cathartic experience for me . . . I simply cannot imagine a world without reading. It would break my heart to never be able to write again, but reading was what made me want to be a writer in the first place. It is what still inspires me today. So many times I feel like giving up, but then I'll read an amazing book and remember all over again why it is that I dare dream to be a published writer someday. Because I want to touch the imaginations of others, and have them share my dreams, too! This is the gift--and the burden!--of the writer. But without reading, I feel like I would lose that spark to want to succeed.
Maybe. Maybe not. In either case, writing is also hard! Whereas reading? Pssht! Reading is fundamen. . . er, easy. Yeah, easy. Reading is my escape. Well, moreso than writing is for me. Although there's not much separation between the two, I must admit. Not in terms of my affection for both.
Hmmm, tough decision wouldn't you say? So let me ask you writers out there (because you knew I would):
Which one would you give up?