And the thing is, if at any point in my life, including this one, I found my way into another world, my first impulse would not be to reject it and seek a way home. It would not be, like Buffy, to elevate “ a normal life” beyond all other sources of power and awe. I just don’t know how to tell that story. It doesn’t interest me. As a child, I wanted magic, desperately. I would have given anything for a door to open in a wood and let me out of my life. I never understood the need to end the dream and get home–perhaps because I never understood “home” as a metaphor for “safe.” Not all homes are safe. Not all places of safety are home-like. I would have run wild through a magical kingdom and never looked back. Talking animals? Yes. Witches and monsters? Yes. Dark queens? Absolutely. Give it right here. I would have said yes to all of it. [Catherynne M Valente writing on Scalzi’s blog.]
Me too. Me too. If I could have walked off into Middle Earth, I would have done so and not looked back. And it’s not that home was so terrible. It was just dull and uninspiring compared to the fabulous adventures I read about. I wanted to leap off into the world and have it catch me, and the world seemed to be somewhere, anywhere, other than Waipori Falls, with its 30 houses and 100 (give or take a few) residents.
Of course, now that I’m an adult, I realise what an unusual childhood I had, and realise that stories did happen there. But at the time, it simply couldn’t compete with my imaginings of the wide world out there. And even knowing that there’s life and wonder and delight right here, if I could leap into the wonders and terrors of another world, I’d be off, middle-aged as I am.