Blair from Marketing

Accessit Team Talk – Blair – Marketing

Blair offers a good idea or two and it’s probably because of all the reading he does. In this edition of Accessit Team Talk, he touches on his favourite books, influencing younger kids to read and the advice he was given for reading himself.

Can you remember the first book you read and did you read much growing up?

I can remember the first memorable books I read, “Redwall”, the first series I used to really get in to as a primary school student. I spent a lot of time reading through those, and I read all of the Roald Dahl books before I went to intermediate school. My Father made me read “Hemingway” which I didn’t quite understand then, but I do now. I also read a lot of Non-Fiction and Historical Fiction, which hasn’t really changed. We also had an Encyclopedia Britannica at home so I would read voraciously about World War 2 and Nazi Germany, and those types of things. My Dad would always tell me that if I was interested in something, then I should read a book about it, so I did and it was my way of being a part of it and creating the fantasy of it in my brain.

Do you read regularly now?

Last year I read around forty books. The way I consume them has changed as I now also listen to Audiobooks. I retain the themes of books better when I read them, but I find myself discussing and sharing the ideas of the books I listen to.

What are the positive results of reading?

There are just so many good books for readers at a young age. You can have so much more fun reading than you can in other ways, and expand your knowledge while you’re at it. With reading, you are reinforcing things as you go because you are forced to imagine the scenarios, consolidate things in your head and build the picture yourself. When you are watching a video, you just have the video in front of you. There is no scope for the imagination to run wild. The beautiful thing about a book is it allows you to do that. Also, literacy levels indicate that a child who is more inclined to read a book for pleasure is more likely to be a happier person and earn a higher pay packet throughout life.

What would you tell younger kids now about reading? How would you encourage them to read?

A lot of the work and encouragement happens at school, but it is so important that it happens at home too. Obviously, it differs home to home, but I’d encourage parents to get their kids to read topics they are interested in, ask them questions about them, and then get them to engage further with it all. Lead by example. If they see you reading then they will be more likely to read themselves.

What is your specific favourite book?

(Without hesitation) Ken Follett – “The Pillars of the Earth”. It blew my mind. A ‘rags-to-riches’ story and coming of age story with themes of gender inequality and a building of an empire in around 1300 pages. I loved it. I decided to start reading it again last Christmas and it’s blowing my mind again.

Which character in a book would you resonate with most?

You always find bits of yourself in all the characters, which makes them relatable to you as a reader. I suppose I relate to Jack from “The Pillars of the Earth”. A bit of an odd-ball, not as much smart as he is resourceful, who finds different ways to the status-quo. I like most characters but I especially like the characters that are flawed.

What comes to mind when I bring up book-to-movie (or series) transitions, or vice versa, and is it a good transition or bad?

“The Stand” and “The Pillars of the Earth” are some of the best books I have ever read, but the television adaptations are terrible! Stephen King’s “IT” as a movie is pretty good. It’s visually spectacular and pretty scary, but the book is terrifying! Which is because of the context that it is built in it. “The Lovely Bones” was pretty good, and I’d say “Lord of the Rings”. Yeah, there are things they missed with LOTR but you have to give them credit for getting 4.5 thousand pages of manuscript on film.

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