Lucy Uwineza, a 25-year-old student studying at Makerere University in Uganda, has a weird obsession for novels. She gets so engrossed in what she reads that that she has created her own fantasy world—a world where her heroes become her life.
She believes that none of the novels she reads is an imaginary tale and that everything in novels does happen in real life.
She gets so emotional that she even cries when a character she loves gets a problem or dies in the novel. If she narrated a story from the novel, she paints a real picture like she co-authored the book or met them in real life.
However, this has put her expectations so high and brought her some disappointments as well.
Uwineza is a big fun of Romance novels; she always compares her boyfriend to the perfect, romantic alpha males depicted in these books. This explains her large string of ex-boyfriends who simply could not live up to her high-end expectations.
This kind of fascination is popular among some readers who believe that whatever happens in fiction novels is based on facts and can therefore happen in real life.
However, this kind of obsession can be very dangerous especially when it becomes an addiction.
Joanita Girihirwe, 23, a University student at School of Finance and Banking (SFB) says that she was previously a novel addict who believed everything she read as Gospel truths.
She was snapped back to reality when she fell in love with a man in one of the novels she read and believed that they would one day meet and get married.
“I used to pray to God to connect me to Gareth (the perfect guy in the novel). He was my perfect kind of guy and any woman wouldn’t mind making the first move. I almost suffered from Hysteria because of this mysterious guy I felt personally connected to,” Girihirwe said.
She finally came to the conclusion that not all we read in books happens in reality.
Novels are very entertaining, educating and informative, however readers should always draw a line between fact and fiction. And this is a sign of maturity.