"If there's a book you really want to read, but it hasn't been written yet, then you must write it." ~Toni Morrison

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

2015 What I'm Reading #12


Time for Round 2
This round, my goal is to start a daily writing practice.  I am starting by completing Blogging University's Writing 101 through The Daily Post.  I will be posting on my blog daily using the prompt and twist provided.  I will also be continuing to work on my reading goal of 30 books this year.

Here is my e-bookshelf.  I have just started reading The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman.  I am really looking forward to reading this book.  I have heard good things about it.  Next on my reading list is The Alchemyst by Michael Scott.  I recently finished reading the first book in the Chaos Walking trilogy.  Overall I enjoyed it, but at times I just wanted it to be over.  The book ended with a pretty big cliffhanger, so I may have to read the next one in the series even if I don't want to.  I don't know how much I like books that end with cliffhangers :)

Here's what I have read so far this year:
Number of Books Read: 16
January
  1. The Immortal Rules by Julie Kagawa
  2. Practical Magic by Alice Hoffman
  3. The Van Alen Legacy by Melissa de la Cruz
  4. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society by Mary Ann Schaffer
  5. Blue Bloods: The Keys to the Repository by Melissa de la Cruz
  6. A Million Little Pieces by James Frey
February
  1. Misguided Angel by Melissa de la Cruz
  2. Witches of East End by Melissa de la Cruz
March
1. The Coroner’s Lunch by Colin Cotterill
April
  1. The Wonder Show by Hannah Barnaby
  2. Wicked by Gregory Maguire
  3. The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum
  4. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
May
1. Forever Odd by Dean Koontz
2.  On Writing by Stephen King
June
3.  The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness
What are you reading this week?

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Top Ten Books I'd Love to See as Movies/TV Shows

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish.  Check out future topics here.

Here are ten books I would like to see as movies or tv shows.  Some of these are already in development, so maybe I will get lucky enough to see them as real movies/tv shows some day :)

1.  The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern (in development)

2.  A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness

3.  Blue Blood Series by Melissa de la Cruz

4.  Uglies Series by Scott Westerfeld

5.  Flight Behavior by Barbara Kingsolver

6.  All of Joe Hill's books (Horns is already a movie, of course)

7.  The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

8.  The Line by JD Horn

9.  The House of the Scorpion by Nancy Farmer

10.  American Gods by Neil Gaiman (STARZ is making a tv show)

What books would you like to see as movies?

Monday, June 1, 2015

Forever Odd by Dean Koontz

What it's About:
I see dead people. But then, by God, I do something about it. Odd Thomas never asked for his special ability. He’s just an ordinary guy trying to live a quiet life in the small desert town of Pico Mundo. Yet he feels an obligation to do right by his otherworldly confidants, and that’s why he’s won hearts on both sides of the divide between life and death. But when a childhood friend disappears, Odd discovers something worse than a dead body and embarks on a heart-stopping battle of will and wits with an enemy of exceptional cunning. In the hours to come there can be no innocent bystanders, and every sacrifice can tip the balance between despair and hope. 
 
You’re invited on an unforgettable journey through a world of terror and transcendence to wonders beyond imagining. And you can have no better guide than Odd Thomas. - from Amazon.com

What I Thought:
This is the second book in Dean Koontz's Odd Thomas series that I have read, and I cannot wait to read more.  Here are some of the things that I love:

The Narrator:  The books are written by the main character, Odd, after the action takes place as a way to process his feelings.  This allows for clever comments and insights made in hindsight.  In fact, this narrator has a lot of clever comments.  I love his voice.  You can really feel his personality in every word.  You can see some great examples on my quote page (above).

The Characters:  Odd Thomas has some amazing people in his life.  An overweight mystery writer with an evil cat.  A diner owner and police chief who love him like family.  The ghost of Elvis (and other assorted dead people) who follows him around town.  I love them all.

Psychic Magnetism:  An ability that is both a blessing and a curse at times, psychic magnetism leads Odd where he needs/wants to be.  Odd uses this ability to solve mysteries and crimes, sometimes before they have even occurred.  I can imagine using it to find my husband's keys or wallet :)

The Villain:  Wow.  The villain in this book is a sexy woman who is fascinated by the supernatural and especially by Odd's psychic abilities and has two beefy reanimated corpses assisting her.  It makes for an interesting story.

So far I would definitely recommend this series and I am hoping that the next book is just as entertaining.

Have you ever read this book?  What did you think?

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

2015 What I'm Reading #11


Time for Round 2
This round, my goal is to start a daily writing practice.  I am starting by completing Blogging University's Writing 101 through The Daily Post.  I will be posting on my blog daily using the prompt and twist provided.  I will also be continuing to work on my reading goal of 30 books this year.

Number of Books Read: 15
January
  1. The Immortal Rules by Julie Kagawa
  2. Practical Magic by Alice Hoffman
  3. The Van Alen Legacy by Melissa de la Cruz
  4. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society by Mary Ann Schaffer
  5. Blue Bloods: The Keys to the Repository by Melissa de la Cruz
  6. A Million Little Pieces by James Frey
February
  1. Misguided Angel by Melissa de la Cruz
  2. Witches of East End by Melissa de la Cruz
March
1. The Coroner’s Lunch by Colin Cotterill
April
  1. The Wonder Show by Hannah Barnaby
  2. Wicked by Gregory Maguire
  3. The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum
  4. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
May
1. Forever Odd by Dean Koontz
2.  On Writing by Stephen King

I have not been reading a lot this week, so I am still reading The Shining and still really enjoying it.  I have another book checked out from the library and another 5 on my hold list.  I guess I'd better get reading :)
What are you reading this week?

Monday, May 18, 2015

Writing Update 5/18/15


Time for Round 2
This round, my goal is to start a daily writing practice.  I am starting by completing Blogging University's Writing 101 through The Daily Post.  I will be posting on my blog daily using the prompt and twist provided.  I will also be continuing to work on my reading goal of 30 books this year.

This week I tried morning pages.  It didn't go so well.  I discovered very quickly that I get up too early for my brain to function properly which means that the writing I produce is not very high quality.

I blogged Monday through Thursday this week.  I wrote in the morning on Monday and Tuesday, each time eventually thwarted by this cuteness:
Wednesday and Thursday I wrote in the afternoon/evening, one day during some free moments at work and the second day after work.  The weekends still remain the most difficult time for me to devote time to writing.  I continue to progress through the Writing 101 prompts, and my reading goal is going really well.  Overall I am happy with my progress this round, although I know that there is room for improvement.  

Stuck in my Head: Whiskey

A few of my favorite songs about whiskey.

"Old Number Seven" The Devil Makes Three

The first time I saw this band live, they admitted that they always sing faster when they do live performances.  After seeing them live a few times, I now think the studio versions of their songs are too slow.  Great song.

"Quiet Whiskey"

There are many versions of this song.  I love the lyrics and I really like this version.

"Whiskey" Trampled by Turtles
So, these are my favorite songs about whiskey.  Have any other suggestions?

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Point of View: Writing 101, Day 9

Today’s Prompt: A man and a woman walk through the park together, holding hands. They pass an old woman sitting on a bench. The old woman is knitting a small, red sweater. The man begins to cry. Write this scene.
Today’s twist: write the scene from three different points of view: from the perspective of the man, then the woman, and finally the old woman.

POV#1
The park is peaceful, rhodies in full bloom, bees buzzing around the plump blossoms.  I walk slowly with Caroline savoring the heady perfume of the May flowers.  We walk hand-in-hand dreaming about the future, our future.

Then I see her: a frail, old lady sitting on a bench, knitting a red scarf.  The sun shines on her face, shadows settling in each wrinkle.  Her eyes are young and bright.  She looks off into the distance as the knitting needles dance in her nimble fingers.  Her sweater and skirt swallow her small frame, as if she is shrinking inside her own clothes.

She reminds me so much of Oma that I want to run up to her and jump on her lap.  I remember how Oma taught me to knit my very first scarf, bright blue with a fringe.  My fingers were clumsy and unsure, the scarf a misshapen patch of uneven fabric.  The scarf that still sits in my treasure box.

I had hoped that Oma would make it to my wedding someday, hoped that my bride's something old would come from Oma's treasure box, hoped.  I feel the weight of the memories and I feel the hot tears fill my eyes.  I squeeze Caroline's hand a little tighter as we pass the little old lady.  Oma smiles at me from behind the red scarf, and I feel hope again.

POV#2
Ugh!  Why are we walking around this stupid park again?  I should be at home.  There is so much planning to do.  The wedding is in less that a year.  I need a venue, a dress, bridesmaids, groomsmen, cake, flowers, all the details must be perfect.

The ring is already perfect.  Of course it should be.  It's the exact one I told him to get me.  It sparkles on my finger as the sun hits the diamond.  My amazing ring outshines all the flowers in this stupid park.  My stupendous ring will outlast all the sill flowers.  Not to self:  find a venue with no rhodies.

Ugh!  My feet hurt.  Jimmy Choos are not made for this level of activity.  But if I want a part of his money and his lifestyle, I have to put up with a walk in the park every so often.

O..M..G..  Is he crying?  Why the hell is he crying?  Maybe it's that little old chick.  I would definitely cry if I had wrinkles like that.  Did those wrinkles scare him?  Is that why he's crying.  Well, I hope his budget can keep up with my Botox then.  Maybe it's that hideous scarf that's making him cry.  Thank God he has the money to keep me in designer duds.  I just love thinking about our future together.  Perfect.

"Let's go home," I say aloud and lead him to the car.

POV#3
Knitting is so peaceful.  I love the feeling of the yarn slipping through my fingers and along the needles as the click together rhythmically.  I take my knitting everywhere with me.  I always have.  It's helped me through a lot.  Knitting makes waiting in line less boring, using public transit more enjoyable, and it helped me maintain my calm as my husband wasted away in his hospital bed.

That young fella over there reminds me of my Ernie, when he was young of course.  We used to walk in the park together on sunny days like this one.  I always had my knitting with me, like I said, but I never needed to knit when I was walking with Ernie.  Holding his hand made all my worries disappear.  Oh dear, it's been almost five years now since he's passed.  Never even got to see our newest little grandchild who will never get to wear his new red scarf if I don't focus on this knitting.

Oh!  I hope young Ernie over there is alright.  Looks like he's got some bad allergies, watery eyes.  I wonder if I have a tissue...

Reflection on Day 9:  I didn't realize that I had changed the sweater from the prompt to a scarf until I started typing this :)  I really enjoyed writing this prompt and I think I will use this concept again in my writing career.