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Choose You Own Adventure

July 29, 2007

Was anyone else addicted to these as a child? These were the books where you’d read a few pages, and then be presented with a choice…

If you want to go through the door on the left, turn to page 102.
For the door on the right, turn to page 88.

There were usually about a hundred different outcomes. Most were endings where your character died, but maybe ten combinations in each book would result in your character winning to various degrees. The upshot was that you could read the same book over and over and get new stories.

I found my first one by chance in a Lionel Playworld in North Miami. They were dirt cheap—maybe two dollars—and for one glorious summer, my allowance was enough to gorge on them. I probably bought forty or fifty of them.

Looking back I think my roots in writing fiction came from this build-a-plot period of reading. I started to get hooked on making my character make awful decisions. I would argue with myself until I could find a rationalization for them to walk through the door marked with a huge red skull and crossbones. I’d give them character flaws to drive their actions, just to see what I could come up with.

And, just like that, a love of reading because a passion for creating the story.

d.challener roe

  1. July 29, 2007 4:21 am

    I _loved_ those books! Not only did they get me into writing, but they also set me on the first steps to my other joy in life. Role playing games. Yes, I am that much of a dork. 😛

    Also, now that I know you are here, you are getting added to the “blogs to read all night” list. Heh heh!

    Sarah R L Boese

    Fiction, Poetry amd Literary Mumbo Jumbo
    Blogging for Planned Parenthood

    Sponsor Me?

  2. July 29, 2007 4:39 am

    Hi 🙂 I’m to tired to say anything terribly clever so I’ll just say congrats on making it this far and good luck finishing.

  3. teejei permalink
    July 29, 2007 4:59 am

    Oh my! These were my favorites…right before I jumped on the Sweet Valley High bandwagon. *meep* Thanks for reminding me. *plans to dig up and restore collection*

  4. July 29, 2007 5:30 am

    Not that series, but in the uK there were a different related series that I can’t remember the title of since, well, I’ve been up for many, many hours now.

    I am just surfing randomly to say hello to other tired blogathonners. 🙂

    Good luck!

  5. July 31, 2007 10:08 am

    i adored these. i hope to soon get a CYA book for adults i heard about recently:

    looks like a lot of fun!

  6. July 31, 2007 6:43 pm

    Im sori I missed your blogathon
    good on you for doing it

    yep i read these books as a child and am now reading them to my son

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