What I’m Reading: Winnie the Pooh, Silly old Bear

Went and saw Christopher Robin today, and it was fantastic. I went in expecting some childhood nostalgia, and a heartwarming story and got exactly that. The animation of our old friends to look more like the actual stuffed animals is amazing, and makes you want to pick them up and hug ’em all!

I’m feeling a little nostalgic tonight, naturally, so reading The House at Pooh Corner.

Will also probably re-read Winnie the Pooh at some point, too. If I could ever write anything as well as A.A. Milne, I would count myself very blessed indeed!

Happy writing everyone! (And reading!)

What I’m Reading: Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi

I attended a writer’s group around here and someone recommended this book to all of us. It was a winner of a contest called Pitch Wars, which she also told us about. If you don’t know what pitch wars is, I suggest you Google it. Got a manuscript? Want some advice from experienced writers? This contest is for you. You get a chance to partner up with with a mentor, who will offer you advice and ways to edit your novel so you can pitch it to agents. In the end it’s like a bidding war for the best novel and sounds so exciting. I’m going to give it a try myself.

Anyway, this book is about four young adults who are brought together by tensions exacerbated by the politics surrounding the world of the novel. On one side there are those who have magic, or used to have it. On the other: the evil king who is determined to keep magic away for good.

Friendships form, romance kindles, and adventure makes this book as absorbing as the world the author has created.

Happy Reading and Writing!

Poem: Guilt

enter a book store

isn’t this just a sanctuary

of written thoughts

and quiet nooks

with no judgement

or weird looks


fingers trail over paperbacks

science-fiction you’ve never read

till you find a treasure

convince yourself

you need it desperately

it’s all in your head


you’re going to read it

as soon as you get home

you’ll cherish it forever


but  on the floor

in a plastic bag

it sits alone



How I devoured 20 Books in less than Five Months

Right now, I work in data entry, I’ve been there about five months and as far as boring jobs go…well, this one takes the cake. I don’t really mind it though. It’s not stressful, the people I work with are alright, and I don’t have to deal with customers, or customer service, or retail, (which I hate.)

And I can listen to music, AND audio books while I work, and this arrangement works well for a book-nerd like me.

spy8I’ve come to realize I have this obsession; I told myself that if I wasn’t in Grad school, I would absorb all the books that I could, and perhaps learn something new.

I guess I didn’t realize until now, (late twenties now and I’m just starting to realize) that I really do have a terrible attention span. I’ll watch a video for 20 secs, and I swear if it doesn’t insight some kind of meaningful reaction in that very short life span, I’ll exit and find something else to look at.

I think this is also the reason I love young adult and children literature. For that genre, you really have to start out in the middle of the action to catch its readers, it is immediate, it takes you along for the ride.

I love a great story, but sometimes I don’t have the attention span, or time to sit down and try to absorb a thousand pages of high fantasy with a trillion characters, and numerous worlds, but I CAN listen to an audio book and I’ve absorbed my fair share in the past couple of months:

The books I’ve now read (listened to):

Harry Potter, by J.K. Rowling (all seven of them)

Game of Thrones, by George R.R. Martin (all five)

The Book Thief, by Markus Zusak

American Gods, by Niel Gaiman

Still Foolin’ Em…Where I’ve Been, Where I’m going and Where the Hell are My Keys? By Billy Crystal

Let’s Explore Diabetes with Owls, by David Sedaris

Virals, by Kathy Reichs

The Casual Vacancy, by J.K. Rowling

If I stay, by Gayle Foreman

Where She Went, by Gayle Foreman

The books are pretty much in order from how I listened to them. I started with Harry Potter first, because, let’s face it – it’s the best! I’ve already read the books about a thousand times, but I do love listening to the audio occasionally.

And because it’s a list, I thought I’d do a little bit of ranking…

My favorite:   Harry Potter, of course.

Least favorite:  Virals, by Kathy Reichs. It wasn’t as original as I thought it’d be.

Funniest: Billy Crystal’s Still Foolin’ Em

Saddest: If I Stay, Gayle Foreman

Most thought-provoking: The Book Thief and American Gods

Most Surprising: The Casual Vacancy. The book was just different from what I was expecting. I think I expected more of a mystery-type novel from the way it is described, but the book is really more of a look into the heartbreaking world of human emotions.

And Most Inspiring: Let’s Explore Diabetes with Owls. It inspired me to journal more, and write more non-fiction of my own.

And I guess that’s it. There really isn’t much else to this post except that I’m going to sit back and admire my own list and think about how awesome I am. 😉

I am contemplating listening to the Wheel of Time series next. What do think? Any suggestions?

What is your favorite book?

Have you read any of the books on this list?

NaNoWriMo Days 1 and 2: Let’s Go Places!

NaNoWriMo Day 1: I slept late, went to the mall, ate dinner with a friend and got my hair cut.

NaNoWriMo: Day 2: Slept late, drank a cup of tea, did dishes, and looked at Grad programs.

The point: My NaNoWriMo month is off to a rough start, but I wanted to take this opportunity to say that I’m going to give it a try. It’s the busiest month I’ve had in awhile, what with the holidays coming up and new jobs…and Agh! But this is important to me.

Except, I’m going to use the rules as “guidelines,” and well, cheat…essentially. I’ve already got my story in mind, and I already have a brief brainstorm, ANND I have already about 9,000 words written.

dawns-rising-cover-page1.jpgThe story that I’m going to try to write in its entirety, even if it is a crappy first draft, is my story Dawn’s Rising, which I had hoped to self publish, and use as a platform for this blog. It’s been on a hiatus for awhile, but it still lives…somewhat.

Bringing that idea to life is very important to me, and something that I still want to complete and finish….whether good, bad, ugly…I just have to face my fears, learn how to create a compelling plot, and storm on ahead no matter how many self doubts try to bring me down!

So I am going to be using NaNoWriMo as a motivator…and hopefully get some kind of finished product as a result!

Any other fellow NaNoWriMo writers out there? What are you going to write about?

I’d love to hear from you!

Happy Writing everyone!

Safe and Sound and Reading

Spending one of my days off as a couch potato since I don’t feel that brilliant, but FINALLY catching up on a bit of my wordpress reading today. I’ve missed a lot of great posts from some really great people and for that I am furiously reading and liking as many things as I can. 🙂

There are a lot of talented people out there!

On that note, whenever someone has a setting on their blog that has a person sign in before they can comment or like a post, it seems that either my browser, or my internet connection is not letting me like their posts. I sign in, and nothing happens! At first I thought it was Internet Explorer, but I have been using Firefox for a few months now, hmm…any thoughts?

So, there are many, many posts out there that I do like, it just won’t let me! Hmph. Here’s a song to make up for it! I’ve had this song in my head for a few days now. It inspires me to tell a story that is so beautiful and haunting at the same time…

The House On Mango Street

Every writer has a moment where it all began. That point in their lives, where they were 10, or 14, or 42, where they realized that words can be something more than dots and slashes and letters on a page…that words can take you places.

For me it was a book called, The House on Mango Street, By Sandra Cisneros, which I read in eighth grade. The middle school that I attended had a new eighth grade teacher that year; a man from New York City named Mr. Van Dright. He was a bit unorthodox for an upstate New York school strict on curriculum and following the rules. He had long dark hair and grizzle on his face, who wore a leather jacket and drove a motorcycle when he wasn’t in school, who reminded us often how thankful we were to attend a school that was safe and clean with no metal detectors.

And although this unique teacher from the city was forced to resign before the following year, what I remember most about him was that he was an artist. He had that look in his eye of a person who had stories to tell. He showed me, although he probably doesn’t know it, (a very insecure and shy fourteen year old at the time,) that books and words could be something more, you just had to dream them.

“In English my name means hope. In Spanish it means too many letters. It means sadness, it means waiting. It is like the number nine. A muddy color. It is Mexican records my father plays on Sunday mornings when he is shaving, songs like sobbing.” (Cisneros,10)

This is from a passage in the book entitled, “My Name.” I remember him reading it to the class that day. What does that mean, he asked us. A name like the number nine?

Perhaps it was because I was obsessed with names. Wondering what it would be like if I had a different name – to separate myself from the ten other girls named Amanda in my school. (I really did graduate with about 5 of them.) Perhaps it’s because later on in the passage, the narrator goes on to describe her name, “as if the syllables were made out of tin and hurt the roof of your mouth.” (Cisneros, 11)

Up until that point in my life, I’d never given much thought into the meaning of words, how with a simple sentence you can describe your name as muddy and we know how you felt about whatever it is you were talking about.

My own writing as of lately, has become its own kind of muddy and I thought I’d take this time to go back and remember where it all began. How words can have inspiration just by how they sound in your mouth mixed around with a word or phrase that can have nuances of meaning. How something simple can change the way you think and view the world. Muddy. Muddy. Muddy.

Nothing was as clear to me as those words on those pages. I wanted to write muddy too.