Finally I’ve got a job! More than that, it’s the best job in the world, because I get to do what I love doing more than anything else in the world – reading.
I’ve wanted a job for ever so long. My brother Rufus has one and he’s a whole year younger than me. After all, I’m eleven years old now, so it’s only fitting that I should be working.
It all came about when I was talking to Mrs Steampunkle one day. I was telling her that adults say quite ridiculous things sometimes. I told her Ma says I’ve always got my nose stuck in a book and Pa calls me ‘a proper little bookworm’. To my way of thinking, both of those sound quite unpleasant and definitely not true. Why, if my nose was stuck in a book, I wouldn’t be able to read the words and would go cross-eyed trying. As for being a worm, well everyone knows worms like the dirt out in the yard, not reading books on the rug in front of a nice blazing fire.
Mrs Steampunkle laughed and told me what bookworms really are (which is a terrible thing, and they are actually called book lice, although they’re not lice either, which is even more confusing) so I told her I’d never destroy a book – not even if the alternative was to starve.
She mentioned that she had quite a stock of books, which she sells on market stalls, and asked whether I’d like to see them.
I said I wasn’t particularly keen to see them, but if I might be allowed to READ them, that would be a different thing entirely and yes, I’d like that very much. So after laughing some more (she does seem to laugh quite often – I’m not sure why) she fetched over a stack of books and told me to read whatever I liked.
Well when I read, it’s as if I somehow become a part of the story. I feel as if I’m inside it, living the characters’ lives along with them. Usually people have to shake my shoulder to bring me back to this world. Even then it takes me a while to remember which one is real (although I think probably they both are). Mrs Steampunkle had to shake me and shout “Molly!” rather loudly several times to pull me out of the story I was enjoying. It’s called The Diary of a Tinkerer and it’s all about Henry and how he and his time machine got stuck in a dreadful-sounding place called 2017, where he was only one twelfth of his normal size.
I can’t wait to find out what happens next. Luckily, though, I’ll be able to read on, because Mrs Steampunkle said she’d like me to go with her to her market stalls and sit reading her books! That is honestly all I have to do for this job. She said when people see me so engrossed in her stories, they will want to buy them and read them for themselves. She won’t be paying me any wages, but it’s better than that, because in return, she is going to write and print MY STORY!
Imagine that – a real book all about me! I was rather worried that I hadn’t had any adventures to make a story interesting, but she insisted that she’d got enough material just from talking to me. She asked me what I’d like the book to be called and I chose Molly – by Herself. Mrs S says it’s a very good title.
So soon I will have my nose stuck in a book – and all the rest of me too. Oh, and if you come to any of the Steampunk-Shrunk stalls, you may see me there, although I might not notice you. Sorry about that.