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Author Archive: "Madeline Miller"

Writing at Six Miles an Hour

As a child, I spent much of my life inside because that was where the books were. My early memories are of reading on couches, floors, beds — I preferred the prone position to the upright because it seemed to signal a longer commitment. I became a connoisseur of light and shadow, the shifting angles of sun as it moved across the windows.

Relatives and family friends often prodded me: "Don't you think you should go run around a bit?"

No, I didn't. Anything that made me put down the book was my enemy. And of course these requests always seemed to come at the book's best part, at the moment I was so deep in the living dream that coming up gave me the bends. I offended more than one adult by staring blankly at them, before managing a "No, thanks" and returning to my pages.

Despite my obliviousness, I couldn't help but notice it was always exercise offered in exchange. (No one ever said, "Don't you think you should play video games for a bit?") So inevitably exercise became associated with resentment and drudgery. Every moment I spent ...

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