the story life

Stephen King And Always Taking A Book With Me

Stephen King reading a book while out

“Books are the perfect entertainment: no commercials, no batteries, hours of enjoyment for each dollar spent.

What I wonder is why everybody doesn’t carry a book around for those inevitable dead spots in life.”

―Stephen King

I am with Stephen King on this one. I like to have a book with me wherever I go, though it isn’t always a physical book like he prefers.

Most of the time I use the Amazon Kindle App for my phone, which keeps me from having to lug a book around to random places. The app also does things like saves my spot in the book instantly, which I like.

It’s nice to be able to take my phone out of my pocket and get some reading in, then pop it back in my pocket just as quick.

Picture of someone reading on the Amazon Kindle appWhen I know I’ll have a good amount of time to dedicate to reading while I’m out and about (like when I take my kids to the park or if I’m going to be waiting for a while at the doctor’s office) then I will take a physical book with me.

For one thing it saves the battery on my phone, but most importantly it’s just nice to have a physical book if I’m going to be reading for a long time. There’s no notifications that will pop up and interrupt my reading, nagging me to get away from the story.

How about you, do you like to take a book with you while you’re out and about? If so do you take a physical book or use your phone?

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09/01/2018
story talk

Babbity Rabbity And Her Cackling Stump?

Story of Babbity Rabbity Cackling StumpMum used to read those to me as a kid!

The Wizard And The Hopping Pot, Babbity Rabbity And Her Cackling Stump… Come on! Babitty Rabbity… No?
–Ron Weasley

In Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows Ron sees the book ‘Tales Of Beedle The Bard’ and starts naming off all the fairy tales his mother used to read to him as a kid.

But since he grew up in the world of magic the stories are nothing like most people have heard of, and Harry and Hermione look at him like he’s gone crazy.

And with titles like Babbity Rabbity And Her Cackling Stump it’s hard not to wonder if the stories are a bit crazy themselves.

Tales Of Beedle The Bard Book by JK RowlingTurns out that JK Rowling had originally come up with those titles because they sounded silly and a little crazy, thinking that they would be the perfect titles for wizard fairy tales. What she didn’t realize at the time is that she’d end up writing those stories later on for people in the muggle world. Rich muggles, to be exact.

In 2007 she wrote the stories and auctioned off a handmade copy of Tales Of Beedle The Bard to help a children’s charity. The book ended up raising a whopping 4 million dollars! Maybe Babbity Rabbity doesn’t sound so crazy after all.

Luckily for the rest of us Tales Of Beedle The Bard was released to the public a year later, and at a price that was almost 4 million dollars cheaper ;).

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12/19/2014
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The Hobbit: The Strange Story Of How JRR Tolkien Came Up With The Idea

Picture of Bilbo Baggins from The Hobbit An Unexpected Journey.No doubt you’ve heard of The Hobbit by JRR Tolkien, it’s one of the top bestselling books of all time and has even been made into several movies.

But did you ever wonder how JRR Tolkien even came up with the idea of hobbits in the first place?

Turns out that hobbits were originally inspired by the strangest of things: a blank sheet of paper.

JRR Tolkien was working as a teacher in the early 1930’s and one day he was sitting at his desk grading a pile of papers his students had recently turned in. Frankly he was bored of it but it was a task that had to get done, so he continued to go through page after dull page.

Suddenly he came across a paper that for whatever reason the student had left completely blank. This was a breath of fresh air for Tolkien and gave him a bit of an escape from the dreary work he had to do.

He stared at the piece of paper for a bit and then suddenly, for no particular reason, wrote “In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit.”

Picture of the book cover of The Hobbit by JRR Tolkien with Smaug on the front.The thing is, JRR Tolkien had no clue why he wrote that line …or even what hobbits were supposed to be. But in the days afterwards the line stuck with him and he just couldn’t get it out of his mind. He said about this later on:

Names always suggest a story in my mind, eventually I thought I’d better find out what hobbits are like.

So JRR Tolkien started to write about hobbits to find out what they were like, and two years later he had completed one of the bestselling books of all time.

I wonder if that student who turned in the blank page ever had any idea of what kind of impact their decision had on history. One thing is for sure though, next time you randomly come across a blank page don’t ignore it, you never know what could happen if you start writing!

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04/23/2014