Not the kind of “love” question you’re expecting for Valentine’s Day. No, what I want to know is:
What do you love most about reading?
Without a doubt, my favourite thing about reading is the escape it provides. I spent my days checking that accountants know what they’re doing, more or less. Outside of work, I get to read about Danish policemen tracking down terrorists, sweethearts meeting in cancer survivor meetings, piano tuners travelling to Burma at the turn of the 20th century – I leave the London Underground/a client’s canteen/an aeroplane high above the earth far behind.
I love that I get to pretend to be the protagonist. I’m not talking about the legions of fan fiction writers who like to imagine that they really are Elizabeth Bennet and Darcy is coming to rescue them from their modern drudgery, but that a writer can make me totally forget my own life and get totally inside a character’s head.
And I love the total relaxation that comes from leaving reality behind. Payroll controls testing can get to you after a while…