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Make some time to read

For me, there’s nothing better than sinking into the world of a good story. It doesn’t matter if that story comes from the pages of a book or a comic or a magazine or just something interesting I stumbled across surfing the internet.

I’ve always loved how a story can transport me to another world or teach me a variety of new things. I’ve always loved how a story can spark my imagination and keep me thinking about things for hours, days, even weeks or months later.

March is National Reading Month. The designation is arbitrary because we could choose any month to celebrate “National Reading Month” really, but now’s as good a time as any to pick up something new to enjoy.

The month focuses particularly on cultivating an interest in reading for younger children. You might have seen the News Herald’s coverage of recent reading events which took place at different local elementary schools. Those kinds of opportunities are wonderful for kids because they ignite a desire to seek out stories. It lets them know what reading options are out there.

But I also want to convey that it’s never too late to develop an interest in reading. While we should definitely encourage all the elementary-aged children we know to read, let’s also encourage high school students, college students, and people of all ages to read more. I want to encourage both you and myself to read more.

There’s no such thing as “too much of a good thing” when it comes to reading. Just think about how many different books there are in the world. Anything you’re interested in, you can find at least a dozen books on the topic. Fiction? It’s out there! Nonfiction? It’s out there! You can be picky and yet still find something to read.

And why even limit it to books? If you prefer pictures with your words, try out a comic book or a graphic novel. The stories inside those pages are no less complex than a five hundred page novel.

A lot of stories can be accessed in an online format as well. Speaking as someone who used to lug around one or more books in my purse, it is nicer to have the option to read things on my phone sometimes too.

If you are interested in discovering more reading material, there are a variety of local options. First and foremost is the Albemarle Regional Library system. There are seven libraries spread out through the four counties of the Roanoke Chowan area.

These libraries include the Ahoskie Public Library (Ahoskie), the Elizabeth S. Parker Memorial Library (Murfreesboro), the Gates County Public Library (Gatesville), the Hertford County Public Library (Winton), the Bertie County Public Library (recently relocated in Windsor), the Northampton Memorial Library (Jackson), and the Sallie H. Jenkins Memorial Library (Aulander).

The former Garysburg Elementary School building on Highway 46 also hosts a community library open to the public.

Outside of libraries, there’s also the Cultivator Bookstore in Murfreesboro which offers an eclectic variety of low-cost books (as well as local artwork).

So it’s not hard to get your hands on a good book. In this rural area, a lot of people like to complain that there’s “nothing much to do around here.” But with a book in your hands, you’ve already got a whole world of entertainment inside.

National Reading Month is a good time to pick up a book and start a new reading habit if you don’t have one already. You might just find something good.

Thank you for reading!

Holly Taylor is a Staff Writer for Roanoke-Chowan Publications. Contact her at holly.taylor@r-cnews.com or by phone at 252-332-7206.