The First Book You've Ever Read Challenge!

Hey guys!
First of all I would like to thank all of you for your love, support, and encouragement after I announced the publication of my debut poetry book, Breaking into Butterflies, last month. (For those who were unaware, my book releases this October and you can get more info about it here)
Since announcing it, these past few weeks have been a crazy whirlwind of editing, promoting, marketing, and all that good stuff! I'm currently in the last rounds of editing after I realized I needed to add a few more poems to the collection. I plan on finalizing everything by the end of this month!

As far as my novel goes, I'm super excited because today my cousin Cassidy and I are headed up north to take a writing retreat! We'll be spending all weekend working on our books and brainstorming with each other, so I'll definitely be doing a post about it next week!

For today, I was tagged by the lovely S.M. Metzler to do the "The First Book You've Ever Read Challenge" which was started by Marrok Macintyre!

The rules are:

  • Challenge at least 1 person
  • Share what was the first book you've ever read
  • Why you read it in the first place
  • How did it inspire you to become a writer

This challenge was actually super hard because I read a looot of books as a kid. But the first one? That's tough!
In elementary school, every year our library would get all set up for the Scholastic book fair, which was easily one of the greatest things ever. Tables and tables of books for sale. Tables and tables.
We would also get a catalogue to take home that our parents could order from, so of course as soon as I would get it I would go through and circle every book I wanted.
One year, I saw this:

Ida B. Applewood believes there is never enough time for fun.

That's why she's so happy to be homeschooled and to spend every free second outside with the trees and the brook.

Then some not-so-great things happen in her world. Ida B has to go back to that Place of Slow but Sure Body-Cramping, Mind-Numbing, Fun-Killing Torture—school. She feels her heart getting smaller and smaller and hardening into a sharp, black stone.

How can things go from righter than right to a million miles beyond wrong? Can Ida B put together a plan to get things back to just-about perfect again?

Literally as soon as I saw this book cover, I needed it. And then we watched a video about the book fair, and there was a sample of this book in the video, and then I really needed it!
So I got it, devoured the words, and fell absolutely in love with writing even more. It was such a beautifully raw story, and looking back on it now I love it even more. It's told from the perspective of a young girl looking at life, and at the time I read this story I was a young girl and I identified with the voice of Ida B. Looking at this story now that I'm an adult, I pick up on the adult subjects that seemed small and unimportant at the time. For example, in this story Ida B's mom learns she has cancer. Seeing something so huge and scary from the eyes of a child is incredibly eye-opening, and the author did such a beautiful job!

I love this book. I have always and will always love this book. It transported me to a different world that I didn't want to leave. (Literally. I had plans to paint my room to look like Ida B's apple orchard.)

This book definitely inspired me to be a writer simply because I loved how the author wrote this story. Ida B. personifies a lot of things in nature, like the trees and the stream. As an adult reading it, I know it's just Ida B's imagination. But reading it as a kid? Those trees were her friends, and they could definitely actually talk. I wanted my writing to evoke the same kinds of feelings and beliefs in my readers.

If you didn't read this book as a kid, I encourage you to pick it up. It's a beautiful story about the unfairness of life through the wide eyes of a child, and it remains one of my favorite childhood books to this day.

So that's the challenge! While I am not completely positive this was the first novel I ever read, I know it was one of the first I ever chose to read by myself.

I don't know who has already done this, so if you want to do it, I tag you!

Also, if you haven't gotten the chance to check out/like my Facebook author page, please do so! You can find links to all of my social media up in the "Contact" tab. 

I hope you all have a lovely rest of your week and get all of your writing goals accomplished!