Stories inspire our souls for sure. They also heal our minds and I suspect, bodies as well. I’ve always said a good book is my drug of choice and I’m not exaggerating. I have no verifiable proof, of course, but my experience tells me I’m on to something. Under stress, feeling bad, going through a rough patch? Crawl into a book. I’ve been doing it since I learned to read.
I just had one of those weekends. Frankly I did not feel well; I’ll spare you the details, it would be too much information. It was enough discomfort that it was hard to think. Besides that, heat and humidity laid me flat; my asthma objected and sapped my energy. I often use walking as a way to charge my creative batteries. It wasn’t happening. Gardening isn’t my favorite thing to do, but it gives me satisfaction and also redirects my thoughts. That wasn’t happening either.
What’s a girl to do? I read Victoria Thompson’s Murder on Trinity Place straight through. Considering it is number 22 in her Gaslight series, I had low expectations, and I was delighted when it pulled me in and her characters engaged me. That done, I grabbed my kindle. There were several new books I’ve picked up but an older one caught my eye. I had already read Mary Balogh’s Someone to Wed, but I opened it just to take a peak. I was hooked in the first half dozen screens. I wandered into the Wescott family world and didn’t come out until the following morning. Sometimes when I really need comfort and old familiar story is even more attractive than taking a chance on a new one. SIGH
It got me thinking about what I do, storyteller that I am. It is important work for many reasons, but giving comfort has to be one of them. The thing is, a good story takes my mind off pain, forces my body to relax, and soothes nerves. I think someone needs to study the impact of a good story on generalized inflammation. I guarantee you it helps my mental health; i’m betting it also leps me physically.
On the plus side, I managed to pull together the Grand Prize for the Bluestocking Belles’ July event, Swoodworthy Summer Reading, on Facebook. If you use Facebook, you may want to take a look. I also settled on a title for the Belles’ next joint project. I’m calling it Ethan’s Honor. The hero is a veteran of the Napoleonic wars, more wounded in heart and mind than body–and his body took a beating. I’m finishing it up now. But first, coffee!