Octavia Spencer

Octavia Spencer: 'It's very important that children have a resource'

"Libraries have kind of saved my life."

The libraries have kind of saved my life. As a kid, whenever the books at the local school where reaching at the point that they had to be taken off the shelves and thrown out because the spines were broken in some way, the librarians would call my mom and she go over there and scoop them up and so  I got alot of good free books and alot of adventure because of that so I have a very fond place in my heart for librarians.

You know, I grew up in a very insulated environment. We were inner city, if you like to call it that, Alabama. Montgomery, Alabama, but now when I think about what a real inner city is I don't think we compare, but it definitely, the libraries were a great place of escapism and allowed for learning and reading.

My love of reading definitely came when I, you know,  started visiting libraries and picking out my own books.  It was pretty great.

I think librarians in general, I just remember the school librarians definitely have a fond place  in my heart, because we were able to get all those great books, but you didn't feel like and grown up, I would say bigger kid, until you went to the public library to get your first  library card to check out your first book. And then my mom didn't have the nickels for late fees, so you had to be on top of that.

Today, it's when I can't, I use libraries very differently from before, you know, growing up it was just like my safe haven, a great quiet place to go to do research or stare at  cute boys.  Yes, I did that. I did that. I am very guilty.  But now it's more of a tool for being able to check, it gets really expensive to buy every single solitary book that you're trying to, when you're doing research on stuff like for my books, you know.

So I like to go there every now and again haven't been able to do that now but I used to just go there and sit. Get my little corner and just sit and do research.

Well, I feel the same way about  library budget cuts as feel about the literary arts budget cuts. It's very important that children have a resource to, a place to go, to sit down away from  the masses to study, and also the resources to gather information. And if you cut the resources for the libraries and librarians, where are they going to get that?

That's something I don't think people are really thinking about. Where are kids, what other resource is there? And please don't say the Internet. I love the Internet, there's just something about, you know, the volumes of books that you can just go to and refer to a librarian, and the skilled librarian that's there to help. 

I mean, you know, that breaks my heart. I hope it's revisited. I really do. 

Well, I just finished my children's  middle-grade reader. We just finished it. It will be out October 15. It's called "Randi Rhodes, Ninja Detectives." And it actually is an amalgam of all the great detectives and that I got to read per my librarians growing up. All of my free books. So, I'm excited about that. I'm excited,  I'm a little nervous, too, that people are going to be reading it for the first time.

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