This is part of a series of short interviews with regular guys about what they like to read and why.
I met Gabriel when I interviewed him for a shelver position at the Denver Public Library. We liked him so much we made him a circulation clerk/security guard. He's since moved on to various interesting things, but I still see him when he subs at the library to help pay the bills (he's mostly a working musician/sound designer). He turned me on to the new Battlestar Galactica, and I introduced him to Y: The Last Man, so I'm pretty sure we're even. Let the questions begin!
1. What do you do for a living and what do you like best about your job?
Gabriel: Until recently, I worked in theatre and music. For the last few years, I've worked for the Denver Public Library, and done some freelance music and sound design work.
2. Besides for simple information, why do you read?
Gabriel: To stimulate my imagination. For me, it's better than watching movies because my own imagination creates the images. I also find that, quite often, authors help me to find language for expressing myself... my thoughts, feelings, observations, etc. Sometimes, the right book, can bring me comfort when the world is just too overwhelming or painful. The right book can help me understand the world a little better...help me to understand myself a little better as well. Finally, reading is for me a quiet, personal world all my own. My place away from the world.
3. What did you read when you were a teen?
Gabriel: Hmm... I loved Tolkien. The Hobbit was amazing and I couldn't stop reading it. The whole Lord of the Rings series was fantastic. To this day, The Razor's Edge is still my favorite book. I read it as a teen and it changed my world forever. I still read it once a year and it's a better book every time I read it. I read Oliver Twist by Dickens and was mesmerized. I guess I read books about the outsider who goes on a journey to discover himself, what his life's purpose is, and, through many adventures and difficulties, becomes both a strong and knowing man, and a hero in one form or another.
4. What book(s) do you wish you had read as a teen
Gabriel: Oh, man, that's a long, long list. Some of the books I wish I'd read weren't published then, like Phillip Pullman's Golden Compass series. I wish I had read Lord of the Flies in my teens. I wish Ender's Game had been around in my teen years. I really wish I'd read Ursula K. LeGuin's The Earthsea Trilogy as a teen.
5. What are you working on now?
Several things actually. I'm working on establishing a non-profit that is centered around books and the arts. I've recently written some music for a computer game and have been working with authors to record their work and put a musical score with their voice.