June 19th, 2012

me: portrait

Been thinking....

Anna's posted some thought-provoking blogs lately. 1 rang a bell.....talking about current trends in books.

I LOVE to read. I'll read just about anything that isn't nailed down - I LOVE the written word. Granted, some books are better than others, but fluff has it's place, just like Great Books do. I don't look down on people for their reading choices - heck, I've been buying comic books lately, trying to get Himself back into reading! - but I do think we need to consider WHAT we are reading.

This weekend, I got on a Jane Austen fan-fic binge. (What? I LOVE her books, but she didn't write enough, and she didn't "finish the story". Some fan-fics are not that bad, actually, and make for a nice closure.) I have most of Sharon Latham's "Pemberly Chronicles" (I think I have them all, but since I don't buy new, I can't say that for sure.) - she starts with Elizabeth and Darcy's wedding day, and goes from there. She's a little more....graphic than Ms. Austen ever *thought* of being, but they are pretty well-written, and have the same "flavor" as Pride and Prejudice. Anyway.

I found myself getting irritated with my lovely husband, because he wasn't as romantic/manly/whatever as Ms. Latham's version of Darcy....and I realized that books can be very dangerous to healthy relationships. (So, I'm slow - I've NEVER been affected by a *book* like this before!)(And this wasn't my first time thru these books - I've read all of them at least once before, and it didn't affect me then.)

Of COURSE he isn't perfect - he's HUMAN (Anna, I'm using the "normal" use of perfect here. :lol:). He has faults - but he's a fine example of husband-hood, and father-hood, and man-hood! He is as God made him - and I have NO BUSINESS comparing him to a fictional character! But then I started wondering.....

How many women do this? How many get pissed at their spouse/boyfriend because he ISN'T as "good" as a fictional character - and how many do it subconsciously? How many relationships have been ruined because the Adversary used a book (or many books) to subvert a woman's mind? (Or a man's mind- I'm sure "boy books" have the same effect.) I mean, we all know about how super-models affect a girl's self-esteem - but what about fictional characters?

I'm NOT saying you shouldn't read fluffy bodice-rippers - they're sometimes just what I need to fill my time with. But.....we should be aware of what the books are doing to us....because it kinda scared me. (And again - I've NEVER noticed being affected by a book before now, and I read a LOT. 2 - 3 books per week, usually.....mostly fiction. Mostly "fluff" fiction, or Historical Romance.....and NEVER have I compared anyone in real life to a character in the book. NEVER.)(You know what I mean - anyone important to me. Like a husband vs. Hero of a book. Of COURSE I've "seen" familiar people in fictional characters - that's what makes a good book; you can put yourself and your "people" in the story.)

I know movies/TV shows have been conditioning people to accept stuff for *years* - who's to say books haven't been doing the same? I've noticed an uptick in dystopian literature lately (Hunger Games, et al)....and movies/TV shows seem to be getting darker. (And more...lewd. We watch Big Bang Theory.....and while it's funny, I wouldn't let younger kids watch - Himself might be right at the limit; he's mature for his age, and I don't censor language....but some of the jokes are, well - raunchy. He's not THAT mature, so most of them go over his head, but still...this is a PRIME TIME show!) We're rapidly descending into Sodom-territory....and we seem to be speeding up. (Even without the supernatural-type books hitting the shelves lately......stuff that wouldn't have been allowed any where NEAR Prime-Time 10 years ago is now mild. It's......ugh.)

I don't know where I'm going with this.....but I needed to get it out there. It's been bugging me since Saturday morning, when I realized what I was doing. Fortunately, I didn't snap at my husband - I realized what was happening before that - but still. The simple fact that I was comparing him - and he wasn't coming out on top! - to a fictional character....that was sobering. And made me start thinking.

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