I love all things Alice, and probably own half a dozen copies of this book.
I identify with Alice, maybe because she’s lost in a strange world where nothing makes sense, as I’ve so often felt in the real world.
I get by, but sometimes I feel like I’m playacting, not understanding why everyone is painting the white roses red.
I know exactly how it must have felt when Alice fell down the rabbit hole.
Through this book, Lewis Carroll introduced me to the idea that it’s okay to play with language. I knew that reading was fun, but most books follow a set of rules. English teachers expound on those rules, and in school writing, I dared not break them.
But here was a published author whose book contains nonsense words!
Excerpt from Jabberwocky, by Lewis Carroll:
’Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
Did gyre and gimble in the wabe:
All mimsy were the borogoves,
And the mome raths outgrabe.
It opened up a whole world of language. Suddenly, language was more than it had been before.
In school, I continued to write the way I’d been told. But on my own time, I experimented and played with language. Because now I knew I could.
Alice may have been lost when she first got to Wonderland, but she figured it all out eventually. And what she didn’t figure out, she still managed to deal with. Eventually, she got home, but the world was never the same. Because once she knew about Wonderland, she could never un-know it.
Wow, long time since I read Alice’s adventures. It was in 1969, and I was in seventh grade, and my friends and I wondered if Lewis Carroll used non-prescription drugs.
Hah. Well, I’m not sure that there’s much difference between being a writer and taking non-prescription drugs.
Have you ever seen Alice at the Palace? It’s a little weird, but well worth the watch (you can find it on YouTube), at least I think so.
I hadn’t heard of that before, but I love weird. I’ll take a look on YouTube. Thanks for the tip.
Great choice! I will love learning how these books influenced us early on in life. I think it’s super interesting to see what speaks to us at different points in our lives.
I’ll be interested to see if we overlap at any point on the list. I’m guessing we won’t, but that just makes it more fun.
I feel the same about Douglas Adams. Not because of new words, though, but the way he could turn a phrase – there was so often a paradigm shift involved!
“It was unpleasantly like being drunk.”
“What’s so unpleasant about being drunk?”
“You ask a glass of water sometime!”
Things like that get me fired up.
Haha! You know, I read Hitchhiker’s Guide, and liked it, but I was discussing it with a friend recently, and she explained to me that because I didn’t read the other books in the series, I missed a lot. So the complete Hitchhiker’s Guide series is on my list of books to read this year.
I remember where I was when I read the book, tucked into bed in a strange house, feeling so alone but having the company of Alice helped.
Alice is always good company.
Can you imagine I never read it? I had a picture book version of it, and of course I know all the details just from being saturated in popular culture… but I should really go and read the book 🙂
Happy A to Z!
The Multicolored Diary
I obviously would recommend it!
Did you see Disney is releasing a Through the Looking Glass movie this year? (Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=anvGUW-vsLE) I’m intrigued because I always liked that story better than the Wonderland one. I’m with you about the playing with language in the book, although even those nonsense words follow English grammar, which makes it such a fun poem.