When I first read "The Lord of the Rings", I imagined that the locations resembled places that I grew up with. There is a stretch of interstate 40 between Tennessee and North Carolina that I could picture Aragorn and the hobbits being lost in the wilderness trying to get to Rivendell. Tom Bombadil's house resembled my grandparent's house, and The Prancing Pony made me think of a steakhouse in Knoxville, Tn.
Being a filmmaker, when I read a book I see images constantly, I guess making a film in my mind. But what I also do is hear the music of the language, and feel the emotion of the characters articulated in dialogue and the narrative descriptions. In other words, it's an amalgam for me. But images are certainly in that mix.
It really does depend on the book, and I guess, how important the descriptions of the location and characters are to the actual plot. When Ian Rankin writes at his best, the streets and pubs of Edinburgh are practically a character in themselves, and I can still recall clear images of some locations in those books. If I ever go to The Oxford, I expect I'll be disappointed that it doesn't look like it does in the books. When it comes to characters, there's not that many I have a clear image of. It can be really annoying if you've seen the film first, I found One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest infuriating because Randall keeps being described nothing like Jack Nicholson, and sometimes not behaving like Jack Nicholson, and that somehow becomes the fault of the author in my twisted mind.
Surprised to see that some people don't see mental pictures when they read. I thought everyone did. Interesting thing is I usually put faces on the characters and they are usually of people I know. They might not even be anything like the character but I always need a visual.
When you are reading a book you really enjoy, Do you ever see pictures in your head while you are reading ?
Almost like a movie or a photo album ?
I don`t. I mean i can have an idea what it looks like. But i can never really see it like watching a picture.
Almost always it plays out like a movie.
I find it hard to visualize people's faces, if there is not a picture. I can only imagine them as a blur. I suppose I could imagine the face of someone I've seen in real life, but that would take me out of the book.
Also, most of the time I get lost when elaborate architecture is being described.
I do try to picture things that are happening in books. The last fable I read was Ralph Nader's Animal Envy and I remembering a scene where a seagull was reporting on what was happening in a supermarket parking lot and I did picture a cartoon version of the animal with a microphone flying around.
Last films watched: The Story of Louis Pasteur (1936) 9/10 Dr. Strangelove (1964) 10/10 Killer Klowns from Outer Space (1988) 6/10 Manhunter (1986) 10/10 Evangelion 2.22: You Can (Not) Advance (2009) 8/10