Saturday, April 30, 2011

Because Some Stuff Can't Be Categorized

I have something like 300+ books on my Goodreads account.  This includes books I want to read, books I've read, and the books I'm currently reading.  My other shelves (labels, really) are 
children's/teenchristiancontemporary, disappointing, fantasy, favorites, folklore, general, historical, horror, romance, sci-fi, western, and wishlist.

Right now, I'm just trying to get all of the books that I've actually read straight.  But all of those shelves don't even cover everything.  Where do I put the vampire books that aren't horror (like all 6 of them)?  I refuse to give them the satisfaction of putting them under fantasy.  And if you notice I name most genres.  Did you notice "mystery" was missing?  I don't read a lot of mystery, but I do have some.

Note to self:  Add a paranormal shelf and add a mystery shelf.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Judge A Book By Its Title

Okay, like the book covers yesterday, today I will list all of my favorite titles.  Not all of these are books I've read.  Some are on my to-read list.  Naturally, the majority genre is romance.  Mainly because romance writers can pick a title.

10.  A Reputable Rake by Diane Gaston.  Historical Romance.  The title's oxymoronic.  The big thing about Victorian Era romance is that "reformed rakes make the best husbands" so it makes the list.  Yes, I've read it. It would make Victoria Alexander proud. ;-)

9.  One Good Knight by Mercedes Lackey.  LUNA Fantasy.  This is one of those books where you have to know what it's about.  This particular Tales from the Five Hundred Kingdoms revolves around the Western-style fairy tales.  Dragons, knights, and the Ragged Company (Robin Hood).  Read it.  Loved it.

8.  My Fair Godmother by Janette Rallison.  Teen Fantasy.  Honestly, before I read what the book was about, I thought the godmother was prettier than our protagonist and stole her boyfriend or something.  *shrug*  But it's still a catchy title.  Just read the sequel.

7.  The Dragon and the George by Gordon R. Dickson.  SF/F--not sure what it's considered, really.  It's supposed to be "St. George and the Dragon," but it's not.  Actually, a george is the draconic term for any human.  Cool.  About to read it.

6.  Nectar from a Stone by Jane Guill.  Historical fiction.  I said I didn't like the cover, but the title is what made me want to read it.  And then once I read the back...well...Gwydion, Wales, 1351...

5.  Blue Like Jazz:  Nonreligious Thoughts on Christian Spirituality by Donald Miller.  Christian Nonfiction.  Seriously, saw the title and wanted to read it.  I have it, but I haven't read the entire thing yet.

4.  Goodnight Tweetheart by Teresa Medeiros.  Contemporary Romance.  Just imagine it, a whole romance book that revolves around Twitter.  As soon as I can find it, I'm getting it.

3.  Five Flavors of Dumb by Antony John.  YA.  The title is awesome.  It just grabs you and makes you want to read it.

2.  Charming the Prince by Teresa Medeiros.  Historical Romance.  Prince Charming?  No.  Instead of handsome hunk charming a young lady, we have a young lady bewitching the man.  So so fun.  On one of my Victoria Alexander books, Teresa Medeiros had a blurb, and it said, "Bestselling Authors of Charming the Prince."  Seriously, had to read that title.

1.  Her Highness, My Wife by Victoria Alexander.  Historical Romance.  I remember when I first started reading her and I saw this on the "Books by Victoria Alexander" list.  Hmph.  Sounds interesting.  With a title like that, it had to be good.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Judge a Book By Its Cover

My Least Favorite Book Covers:

Twilight (Twilight, #1)4.  The Twilight Books by Stephenie Meyer.  Honestly, these books made the prettiest cover art on Listopia on Goodreads.  I have no idea why.  An apple, a flower, a ribbon, and a chess piece just don't do it for me.  When I first saw Twilight in the bookstore, I thought it was a horror-version of Snow White. Somebody had a photo montage of the first two books with the caption, "This ain't no ordinary fairy tale."  Apple...Snow White fairy tale...You get where I'm going with this, right? 

They were right.  Fairy tales aren't half as weird.

Nectar from a Stone: A Novel3.  Nectar from a Stone by Jane Guill.  Yes, my favorite book doesn't have the most attractive cover.  Seriously.  The name of that particular painting in "The Florentine Girl"  Elise is half English half-Welsh.  Elise's eyes are grey.  Elise is supposed to be pretty, even, and this woman isn't. 

 2.  Most Christian Fiction.  The majority of the Christian market is Historical and Amish fiction.  Quite frankly, the covers aren't that great.  They're just not that interesting.  Every now and then you get a Fancy Pants cover, but Christian fiction needs some new people in the publishing houses in cover design.  They also need some help picking out titles too.  Even some of the fantasy books don't have interesting covers or titles.  I know it sounds awful, but I'm being honest.

1.  Most romance books.  This is actually one of my favorite books.  It's about a blind man.  ;-P  But having a clean cover and then a steamy stepback is a waste of paper, don't you think?   But anyway....

My Favorite Book Covers:

Oh. My. Gods. (Oh. My. Gods, #1)4.  Oh. My. Gods. by Tera Lynn Childs.  C'mon, you know you like that cover.  Granted, this isn't the edition I read--actually, I read the eBook, and I got the other cover, but anyway...  I like the sheer cheekiness of it.  The book is a very light read, and the cover so implies it.

You Can Never Go Home Again
 3.  The Haunted Books by Dyan Sheldon.  This is one of those books my sister left in the living room and I picked it up.  Like Oh. My. Gods., between the title and the cover, it was totally interesting looking.  And then I read the back of it and decided to read it.

My Fair Godmother (My Fair Godmother, #1)2.  The My Fair Godmother Books.  The Godmother is actually on the cover of the book.  I like the wand fixing the text.  Who wouldn't want to have Chrysanthemum Everstar as her fairy godmother--er, only fair godmother.  But anyway....

 1.  I wish I could've found a better quality for my favoritest book cover.   In the Hall of the Dragon King, eighth printing.  I saw the book cover for the edition that'll be released this year.  It's pretty good too but I love this cover.  It's colorful and it's actually a scene from the book! 

Actually, a lot of the older editions are like that, and I love them for it.  If you ever find a first edition, please mail it to me.  I have first editions of his newest books--duh, I bought them when they first came out.  I also have first editions of the Song of Albion Trilogy.  Most prized possessions, I'm telling you.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Scissors and a Stapler

I moved my books to Google Docs, so I can access them from anywhere, which comes in handy for at school or when I'm traveling and while I don't have my desktop computer, there's a computer handy with internet access.

I took the chapter markers out.

BAD IDEA.  Even if it is all in one document, it's still smarter to have all the chapters marked out.   So, with a printed version of the story, I went back and divided it up by chapters again.

Chapters were the most brilliant thing ever invented, I tell you.  They help writers organize the story.

So what I did, instead of just marking where one chapter ended and and the next started, I cut the page.  After this, I stapled all of the chapter together and numbered it.  While I was re-plotting, I was able to redo everything by chapter.

I replotted two more chapters from where I was.  Not much progress, but better than nothing.

Monday, April 25, 2011

When in doubt, check the laundry hamper

I found my book.  No, it wasn't in the laundry hamper.  Actually, I put a black garbage bag in my hamper and use it as my personal trash can for my room.  But my book was under a pile of my clothes.  The principle still applies.

Another thing my finding my book validates is that you find something when you're not looking for it.  I was looking for a clean pair of blue jeans. 

And I know how it happened.  I put it there to keep it safe.  Mom gave me some clothes to put away.  I put it on top of my dresser on top of the books and there we go.  I have a nervous breakdown trying to find it and think I may have left it at school or something.

No.  It was there the whole time, just waiting for me to find it again and be picked up and read again.  YAY.

One time while I was cleaning my room, and I remember I balanced my school binder, my composition book, and the book I was reading on the mouth of my laundry hamper.  I was trying to throw clothes in there without knocking my stuff in there.

For two or three days I couldn't find my stuff and had to go to school without it.  I finally remembered what had happened with me putting my school stuff on my hamper.  Once I dug into the depths of dirty clothes, I found my book, my composition book, and my school binder, still stacked, at the bottom of the hamper.

When in doubt, check the laundry hamper--or maybe just the laundry.

Spaz Out

You know the book problem I have?  You know, the one where I start a book, read some, buy/start a new book and then forget all about the first book until the new one's done?

You know how I have bookmarks in 20+ books due to this problem? But hey, I still managed to read cover-to-cover 74 books last year and re-read 10 more.  Some I can read without any breaks.  My Unfair Godmother and Babe in Boyland were the two latest ones.  Bought them when they first came out and stuff and read them in a 2-3 day span apiece.  I can't read books in 1 day.  Well, I can, but I don't think you can appreciate the whole of the book if you read it all at once.  Breaks are good.  Gives you time to mull over it and stuff.

My old faithful right now--you know, the book I bring everywhere when I have no idea what else to bring with me to read--is missing.  It's His Majesty's Dragon by Naomi Novik.  Yes, I've read other books in between, but this is the book I will keep coming back to until it's over.  Plus, I got the next 4 books in the series.

So far, it's a great book, although it is heavy reading.  But I can't find it!

If you have any information as to my book's whereabouts, please email me.  I can't find it. 

Also, I updated "The Writing" Page with a synopsis for both novels.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Only You!

Due to all the crap that's been put on Facebook by my family--the adult members, who knew?--I've decided I'm glad I have a small readership for this blog.  The only reason that I even have a Facebook is because there's no other way to communicate with some people on my Friends' list and to plug my blog.  Really, it's futile because only a handful of people click anyway.

That's now good with me.  The people who read who I don't know personally have obviously found something here that they liked.  That's good.  The people who do, well, they love me enough to read it, and even if they don't agree with it, they love me anyway and can accept it.


1.  Whatever you're doing.  If you're having such a grand time, why are you pulling out your smart phone or logging onto your computer and posting it?  Huh?  Yeah, I admit it, I wanted to post last night that I was having craw fish.  But my hands were dirty and I forgot all about it.  I was having a good time and forgot.  By the time I remembered, it didn't matter anymore.

2.  Wherever you're at.  I have nothing better to do than stalk you, huh?  Please.  I have books to write and read.  I don't give a crap where you are or where you just left.  Post that you got home safely.

3.  Slams against another person where everybody can see it.  Really.  If you can't say it to their face, don't post it.  Or are you just a coward?

Social Networking was supposed to be just that.  A social network.  A way for people to keep in touch, but also a way for people who've never met in person, and perhaps never be able to meet in person to meet--as confusing as that sounds.

Don't abuse it.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Beastly Thoughts on Love

Oh, I just love to contradict stuff.  I would've saved this for Easter, but I'm not sure where I'll be so...  ::Shrugg::

Several weekends ago,Lacey and I went see Beastly.  You know, the modern take on Beauty and the Beast.  Sorry, readers, I'm a Hans Christian Andersen duckling, not a Grimm's sister.  Because I'd never contradict Andersen.

Anyway, the tagline of the film was Love is never ugly.

A few weeks ago, playing with a draft for the Novel Formerly Known as Black Sight, Naren and his fiancee/girlfriend were having a conversation.  Naren said something like love was the ugliest thing in the world.  I didn't write this draft down, so I don't remember his exact words.  This existed only in my head.  Well...

Sorry, I think I'm going to agree with my MC other Hollywood.  I'm totally not biased.  ;)

The truest statement of love is a Jew hanging on a piece of wood that shaped like a lower-case T.  The Jew may have once been a handsome man, but he'd been beaten so badly, if his own mother wasn't in the crowd watching him, hadn't watched his torture, she may not have known it was him.

This is not a pretty picture.

The Jew was Jesus, and this upcoming Sunday is Easter.  I used to think Christmas was my favorite holiday, but I'm thinking it could very well be Easter, if I really thought about it.  I mean, sure, I don't get gifts--usually, although the past few years I have--for Easter, but it's still a great holiday.  I mean, even before I understood what Jesus did, all that chocolate...

Yeah, I'm a chocolate bunny-holic.  But even after that, it held more meaning towards me.  This man had come and died for me.  For me.  Even when I don't deserve it.  Even when I screw up.

And even if there had been only one person who wanted to be saved, God still would've had Him do it.

Easter is the sweetest time of the year.  The Ultimate Gift of Salvation Which Was Completed when HE CAME BACK,  and then the lesser gift of a lot of chocolate.

Sorry, no eloquence this year.  I'll see y'all Monday, because I can't guarantee to be on here tomorrow or Sunday.

The Good Stuff: Book Love For *My Unfair Godmother*

My Unfair Godmother (My Fair Godmother, #2)

I read My Fair Godmother and adored it.  Now in My Unfair Godmother.

Goodreads:  "Tansy Miller has always felt that her divorced father has never had enough time for her. But mistakenly getting caught on the wrong side of the law wasn't exactly how she wanted to get his attention. Enter Chrysanthemum "Chrissy" Everstar, Tansy's fairy in shining, er, high heels. Chrissy is only a fair godmother, of course, so Tansy's three wishes don't exactly go according to plan. And if bringing Robin Hood to the twenty-first century isn't bad enough for Tansy, being transported back to the Middle Ages to deal with Rumpelstiltskin certainly is. She'll need the help of her blended family, her wits, and especially the cute police chief 's son to stop the gold-spinning story from spinning wildly out of control."

This is going to sound oh-so-lame, but this book had me spazzing out over its awesomeness.  It's hilarious.  Also, unlike many YA authors I've read, there's no sex and no cursing.  It's just a funny book, and the kind of book I will probably re-read once my TBR pile goes down a little.  Because, there's like, 160+ books up there on the unread shelf.  :-/

Saturday, April 16, 2011

I Don't Think I Should've Let Them Meet: An N-terview

Disclaimer:  I mixed two different teas tonight:  Sleepy Time Extra and Tension Tamer.  I need a little of both.  So, yeah, I'm a little tired.  But in the imaginary sitting room, the sun is shining and stuff.  But if I ever called characters in for an interview, this is probably what it would go like:

I invited my imaginary protagonists to my imaginary future living room.  Nathan Drans and Naren Aerys.  I called them in for an interview.  To better understand my characters.Naren and Nathan are both looking at the bookhelves, looking for something of interest to read.

Me:  Gentlemen!  We have an interview to do here.  You can look at all that later.

Naren and Nathan both obediently come sit down on the sofa.  They are very different people.  I think the only thing theys have in common are that they're my characters and that they're smart.

Me:  So, what are your problems, respectively?

Nathan:  I wasn't aware this was therapy.

Naren:  I was black-mailed.  I survived something I wasn't supposed to.  I haven't seen my girlfriend in over a year...  [pointed look]  Do I really need to continue?

Naren's a good few years older than Nathan--sort of.  Nathan's character is older, but Naren has existed in my mind longer--if that makes sense.  The point is, Naren knows what to expect.

Nathan:  [to Naren]  All that?

Naren:  [nods]

Nathan:  [to me]  It's going to get worse for me, isn't it?

I say nothing, of course.  If he knew it was coming, where would be the fun in that?

Naren half-smiles.  He knows.  As I've said before.

I smile at Naren:  Why don't you tell him all you've been through?

Naren:  In the first...3 drafts, right?--the story was about Kamra--my girlfriend, er, fiancee.  When Ms. Author realized I was more interesting, she made me the main character.  But she kept most of my backstory.  I lost my parents.  I had a stutter.  I had an older bastard brother that none of us knew about--

Nathan:  How is that bad?  The last part?

Naren: [shakes head]  It's not.  Don't interrupt.  Ms. Author never lets me talk that much.

Me:  That's because you have a succint personality.

Naren:  I'll pretend that didn't offend me.

Nathan:  Naren?  What were you saying now?

Naren:  When I was five, I was bitten by a troll and had been subjected to a heavy amount of troll venom until I was sixteen.  That first bite made my second-sight manifest prematurely.  My mentor--a trapped angel--married my older brother.  They had a child.  I thought I was going to have a happy bachelorhood, but I wound up with a washed-up--literally, their boat capsized and by some hand of fate, they made it to shore--older couple.  The husband dies.  I adore Widow Parveen, but that kind of cuts into happy bachelorhood.  And then, two years later the aforementioned child is forced upon me to raise--although I do love my niece, otherwise I couldn't have been blackmailed.

Nathan:  That is a lot.

Naren:  A lot of inconveniences, perhaps not real problems.  I wish I had died when I caught the Pestilence has swept through.

Me:  Shut up, Naren.  If you had died then, there would be no book.

Naren:  [to Nathan]  I've been through a few drafts.  Things change.  Not all of that was in draft 1.  Draft 1, I was actually normal.  By draft 2 million, I've been turned into a Lord Death impersonating, reserved, estranged Prince.  Oh, and whoever heard of a prince having an occupation other than preparing to take the throne?  I make weapons for a living.  Although, Ms. Author arranged for me to have more money than what I would usually have.

Nathan:  At least she made you well off.  I'm broke.

Naren:  My apologies, sir.

Nathan:  [to me]  How many drafts will I get?

Naren:  However many it takes until she's happy with it.

Nathan:  Well, I'm only what, 20-something pages into my story?

Naren:  [to me, actually smiling--he never smiles]  About time for you to start over, Ms. Author?

Nathan:  But it just started!

Naren:  It doesn't matter.

I remember my intended goal. 

Me:  Gentlemen!  I have more questions!  Please.  And I'll have you know, Naren Blaise Aerys, that I have planned out Nathan's story very well.  I actually know what I'm doing.

Naren:  That's a first for you.

It wasn't a question.  It was a statement.  I don't let that deter me though.

I look down at my list of questions I wanted to ask.  They seem so insignificant after Naren and Nathan's conversation a moment ago.

Me:  This isn't on my list. 

But it's something I gotta know.

Me:  What do you want?

Nathan:  To be better off financially.  Money can't buy happiness, but I think I could be more comfortable at least.  It would be one less problem.

I thought it would be so.  But I intend to change that throughout the course of the book.  But he doesn't know that.

Naren doesn't answer.  Not that he needs to.  I'm pretty sure about what he wants.  I think he wants normalcy.  Period.  He wants to be happily married to Kamra--and he has been in a draft, but he doesn't remember that ;-)--and perhaps have a bunch of kids.  Sure, parenthood would be chaos, but I think we both know Naren would prefer that kind of chaos. 

Me:  Goodnight, gentlemen.  This did not go as planned at all, but it's been interesting.  I'll see you on the computer.  Well, kind of.

Naren:  Goodnight, Ms. Author. 

Naren actually has the decency to hug me.

Nathan:  Goodnight.  I have to go back to my terrible life with a crazy lady.

Naren:  Shut up.

Both protogonists fade and disappear.  The whole thing's been odd.  Goodnight.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Dreams at the Casino

Tonight was my third time attending the Dreams Concert, held at the Beau Rivage Casino in Biloxi.

The Dreams Concert is hosted given by the Lynn Meadows Discovery Center.  Basically, it's a 3-hour long fine arts festival.  Songs, skits, tributes...

Dreams:  A Celebration of America was pretty heavy stuff, especially when there are little kids in both the audience and performing it. 

The only problems were that the mics weren't working and someone in the gun show kept messing up.  Ooops.

They kind of centered it around World War II, and some high schoolers did a whole production of what a Canteen would've been like.  There were World War II veterans and some soldiers.  We saw the flag-folding and the gun-thing where they treat the gun like a baton.

Probably the most touching part, however, was when they were pretending to be waiting for the soldiers.  They had posters like "Welcome home, Daddy," and "Respect and Wisdom are yours."

At the very end of the song, they had the special sound effect that announced a flight had ended.  Soldiers (actors?) came from backstage and they made this big reunion thing.  Not to mention what was going on the screens.  We cried.

I was raised to respect the military.  I've had family and friends serve in the military.  War is hell.  While some of those younger children don't completely understand that, they, hopefully, get the hint that military deserve respect, gratitude, love...

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Trips Down Memory Lane

I know I don't always sound like it or talk about it, but back in Elementary school, I was in the Excel program.  It's Special Ed for Smart People.

Well, the Elementary school that I went to twelve years ago, and the one my little brother is attending now, is having their book fair this week.  Mom and I volunteered.  (Although, my mother had to kinda-sorta force me to go.)

Well, after I'd been there about twenty minutes, the Librarian (who was the same one from when I had been there) suggested I go see my old Excel teacher.

After some reluctance (after all, what would I say, and I'm chubbier now then I was then...), I did go see her.

She was happy to see me.  And I was so glad to see her.  Just being in that room brought back so many memories.  The kids were at recess, so I didn't meet them right away.

We caught up.  She had a grandson the same age as Vin, only a few days younger, really.  He JUST missed being in the same grade because of where his birthday falls.  The room's been upgraded.  The kids even got 3 Nooks in the classroom and some new computers.  Although, the state's cutting funding for the Excel program for 7th and 8th graders.

I pointed out that the "Ladder" poster was gone.  Back when I was there, there was this ten-rung ladder with all the measurements of the quality of work, from poor to excellent.  Terrible to wonderful.  There was also a real-model, about a 10-inches to a foot high.

There was also a poster of all the non-words smart students and future leaders WERE NOT SUPPOSED TO SAY.  Ain't, fount, itn't...

She said the students weren't so bad about saying it so much anymore.  I remember my class being pretty bad for it.  :D

And, then as now, the girls STILL outnumber the boys in Excel.  While I was there, we only had one boy from the time I was in 2nd to 4th.  In 5th grade, we finally got another guy.

I helped her out getting some stuff together.  Since I'd been a teacher aide during my two years at CCA, it was familiar work.

During this time, she asked me if I had a boyfriend, if I had fallen in love.  Well, I told her there wasn't anybody.  I was a little embarrassed to admit it, but it was the truth.

She didn't really care.  "Get an education, first," she told me.

"That's what I'm trying for," I said.  As a sidenote, I said, "Well, I took up writing, so I'm in love, just not with a person."

I wonder now, if she knew then, that I would be a writer.  She didn't tell me this, but when she was introducing me to her students as a former student of hers and "creative writer" before they got into their junior readers, that she had saved some of my writing.

I wonder if she knew.  Or even suspected?

The Junior Readers!  They still read out of them.  I don't for the life of me remember the titles of the stories, but I remember enjoying them.  And I remember a story about a little boy who stole a woman's pocketbook to buy a new pair of suede shoes.  There was another about a loch horse (pooka?) who fell in love with a blonde woman.

After I was done with the work that needed to be done, I said a quick goodbye and found back my mom in the library.  My mom had wondered what had happened.  The Librarian though figured that my Excel teacher had put me to work.

All in all, it was a great visit.  I'm definitely going to have to make more trips down there.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Rejection Collection

I received a rejection letter in the mail today.  You're not a real writer until you've gotten a rejection letter, so I read somewhere on the Internet.

I'm still waiting from one more magazine and then I will stop waiting in the mail everyday for a rejection/acceptance.

And then the cycle starts over again because I'm going to send out some more stuff and then be waiting for the mail again...

This is my third rejection letter.  Compared to some, that's not a lot.  Compared to others, well, they've never even tried.  So I'm in the game.  I'm a rookie.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

On Crazy Love

We started the Discussion Sunday School on Crazy Love by Francis Chan today.  To be honest, I didn't care much for it when I had to read Chapter 1 last night.

On the very first page:

"....spoken and written words are cheap, easy to come by, and excessive."

Yea, he made his point, but NEVER say that sort of thing to a writer--or a reader for that matter.  That's an automatic shut-down.  I closed my heart to the book like an atheist slams the door on a Jehovah's Witness at the door.

The written word is SO important to both readers and writers.  I've learned more by reading than anything.  Yeah, so you can buy a book for a few bucks, but the cheap price doesn't indicate a cheap value.  Yeah, some books are crap, but some are treasures.

But anyway, it didn't wow me.  It didn't completely turn me off and make me hate the book, but it just didn't pull me in.

But we got to watch the video that went with Chapter 1.

THAT was good.  I responded a lot better when he was just talking than his writing.  This could be because, as a writer, he doesn't have the grasp on the language Stephen R. Lawhead (or even King for that matter), but as a speaker, he hit the nail on the head.  I liked the video WAY more than the chapter I read.

However, I did read on, and I did like Chapter 2 (a lot) and the little bit that I read of Chapter 3.  Now we're getting to the good stuff.

Can't wait till next week!

Friday, April 8, 2011

Writing, Religion, and the Other Important Stuff People Have Written About

Below are some of the things I've said, things other people have said that I liked, and would make GREAT Facebook/Twitter updates.  Just saying.  All of them (except for my personal ones) will at one point appear in my favorite quotes on Goodreads--probably--in the sidebar.

"If you can't find it, check the laundry hamper."  This doesn't apply to clothing.

"Girls have said they would want to be a princess, a vampire, or a wizard. Well, I want to be the fairy godmother. I could fiddle with everybody's feelings towards each other, and bring havoc--er, HAPPINESS to my charges. What fun!"  I guess this is why I'm a writer.

"I've never had my heart broken.  Ever.  I think it was born broken.  But it sounds logical not to have your heart all in one piece.  If you have a bunch of pieces, then you can give away that many pieces.  Some people are just more important, so they get bigger pieces.  If some idiot breaks the piece you gave him, well, he just made room for more people."

"There's a lot of stuff I can get in my head.  A lot of stuff.  But I don't feel it in my heart.  But then there's a lot of stuff I get in my heart that my head will never understand."

Rich Mullins:

"I had a prof one time... He said, 'Class, you will forget almost everything I will teach you in here, so please remember this: that God spoke to Balaam through his ass, and He has been speaking through asses ever since. So, if God should choose to speak through you, you need not think too highly of yourself. And, if on meeting someone, right away you recognize what they are, listen to them anyway."

I love that.  That, while not my absolute favorite, is definitely one of my favorites.

"We are not saved because we're good. We're good because we're saved.  Never forget what Jesus did for you. Never take lightly what it cost Him. And never assume that if it cost Him His very life, that it won't also cost you yours."

"I can understand why people would have doubts about the Bible. It's a weird, strange, goofy book!"

Brennan Manning Quotes:

"My deepest awareness of myself is that I am deeply loved by Jesus Christ and I have done nothing to earn it or deserve it."

"The gospel declares that no matter how dutiful or prayerful we are, we can't save ourselves. What Jesus did was sufficient."

"When a man or woman is truly honest, it is virtually impossible to insult them personally."

Stephen R. Lawhead:

"To see evil and call it good, mocks God. Worse, it makes goodness meaningless. A word without meaning is an abomination, for when the word passes beyond understanding the very thing the word stands for passes out of the world and cannot be recalled."

"We are closest to Christ when sharing the world’s misery. Think you Jesus came to remove our pains? Wherever did you get that notion? The Lord came, not to remove our suffering, but to show us the way through it to the glory beyond. We can overcome our travails. That is the promise of the cross."

"Call me Silidons, for such I am."

Okay, I can totally understand if you don't get this.  'Silidons' means 'nobody.'  I don't know why I like it, I just know that I do.

Donald Miller:

"There is something beautiful about a billion stars held steady by a God who knows what He is doing. (They hang there, the stars, like notes on a page of music, free-form verse, silent mysteries swirling in the blue like jazz.) And as I lay there, it occurred to me that God is up there somewhere. Of course, I had always known He was, but this time I felt it, I realized it, the way a person realizes they are hungry or thirsty. The knowledge of God seeped out of my brain and into my heart. I imagined Him looking down on this earth, half angry because His beloved mankind had cheated on Him, had committed adultery, and yet hopelessly in love with her, drunk with love for her."

"Writers don't make any money at all. We make about a dollar. It is terrible. But then again we don't work either. We sit around in our underwear until noon then go downstairs and make coffee, fry some eggs, read the paper, read part of a book, smell the book, wonder if perhaps we ourselves should work on our book, smell the book again, throw the book across the room because we are quite jealous that any other person wrote a book, feel terribly guilty about throwing the schmuck's book across the room because we secretly wonder if God in heaven noticed our evil jealousy, or worse, our laziness. We then lie across the couch facedown and mumble to God to forgive us because we are secretly afraid He is going to dry up all our words because we envied another man's stupid words. And for this, as I said, we are paid a dollar. We are worth so much more."

Winston Churchill:

"Writing a book is an adventure. To begin with it is a toy and an amusement. Then it becomes a mistress, then it becomes a master, then it becomes a tyrant. The last phase is that just as you are about to be reconciled to your servitude, you kill the monster and fling him to the public."

"A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty."

"My tastes are simple: I am easily satisfied with the best."

"Sir, if you were my husband, I would poison your drink."
"Madam, if you were my wife, I would drink it." Exchange between Lady Astor and Winston Churchill

Groucho Marx:

"I find television very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go into the other room and read a book."

"Learn from the mistakes of others. You can never live long enough to make them all yourself."

"Blessed are the cracked, for they shall let in the light. "

Albert Einstein

"There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle."

"If you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales. If you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairy tales."

"Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind."

"Coincidence is God's way of remaining anonymous."

And Everybody else:

"Every man's life is a fairy tale, written by God's fingers."
Hans Christian Andersen  (Don't pretend you didn't know that would be here.)

"Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and it may be necessary from time to time to give a stupid or misinformed beholder a black eye."
— Jim Henson

"Never laugh at live dragons"
— J.R.R. Tolkien

"Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another: "What! You too? I thought I was the only one."
— C.S. Lewis

"I don't believe it,' Quince says with absolute certainty. ' I don't believe anything magical can make someone more in love.' [...] He looks me right in the eye as he says, 'Love is already the strongest magic in the world."
— Tera Lynn Childs (Forgive My Fins)
"Don’t worry about wanting to change; start worrying when you don’t feel like changing anymore. And in the meantime, enjoy every version of yourself you ever meet, because not everybody who discovers their true identity likes what they find."
— Antony John (Five Flavors of Dumb)

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Well, It's About Time!

Okay, so Goodreads added "Genres" shelves.

What does this mean?  It means that I can browse books by genre.  But it gets even better!  I can look under fantasy, and there's all these subgenres!  I'm so happy this finally happened.  Now, I don't have to look through fan-voted lists and see a bunch of books that really aren't that genre.

I love this.  Goodreads has been needing to do this, and I'm so glad they did!

And the subgenres* include:

Dark Fantasy (I've been accused of writing, and I've read some)

Dragons (OH YEAH!)

Epic Fantasy (LOTR, anyone?)

Fairy Tales (Granddaddy of the fantasy genre, all the spoofs & spin-offs)

Fantasy of Manners (Comedic-type fantasy where manners matter and there is often a hierarchy involved...)

Heroic Fantasy (a favorite of mine--a lot like epic fantasy, LOTR falls under this category)

High Fantasy (another favorite, this HAS to take place in another world, lot like heroic fantasy)

Low Fantasy (Fantasy set in the real world)

Magic (stuff my mom would kill me if I read it--Not to be confused with the MAGIC REALISM genre)

Mythology (stuff about gods and goddesses and greenmen--anything myth-related)

Paranormal (ghosts, UFOs/aliens, clairvoyance, etc)

Sword and Sorcery (Christian Guide to Fantasy STRONGLY urges against this subgenre, quite frankly, I don't blame them)

Unicorns (okay, do they really need their own subgenre?)

Urban Fantasy (I've read some, don't care for it).

Obviously, these genres are going to overlap, as in High, Epic, and Heroic Fantasy.  Also, I'm sure Urban and Low Fantasy overlap.  Dark Fantasy and Paranormal wil overlap.  Unicorns and Dragons are just subject matter...they can apply to anything.

*And I am not responsible for any inappropriate covers that appear once you click the link.  I only wanted you to be able to see a better description and examples of each subgenre.

And looky what I found under Dragons:
Inheritance (Inheritance, #4)
By Christopher Paolini

Coming November 2011--tentatively.

Yes, these books are a little cheesy.  Yes, these books are Star Wars with a fantasy filter.  I don't care.  These are the books that got me reading.  It's interesting, how you see the change in the writer's writing proficiency here.  The writing in book 3 is WAY better than the writing in book 1.

Let's see how book four and final works out!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Positively GAC: More on Country Music

Yeah, today's the last day of Ragamuffin.  I don't wanna talk about it.  I haven't even left yet.

Because I wanted to chase 3 little boys outta my room, I did something I almost never do.  I switched the TV from SpongeBob to Positively GAC.  I almost never watch it unless there is absolutely nothing else on.  It's not that I don't like the Christian music and some of the country music that plays, it's just that I don't know much of it.  (Although, the stuff I do know, I like.)

People accept what's familiar.  If it's not, discomfort.  The last thing I want to be is uncomfortable, especially in my own home, in the comfort of my room.  Yes, that's my id talking, but if I'm honest, you can't insult me.

Anyway, so today, a song by country duo Montgomery Gentry played.  MG sings "Hell Yeah," most notably.  "My Town" and "One in Every Crowd" are some other common ones.

Today, this played:

The best known characteristic  of country music:  You can sing all about  Jesus in one song, but then talk about getting wasted/laid in the next.  This isn't right, just the way it is.

Country music--a lot of music, actually--has everything to do with being human.  But if there's one genre that covers it all...

Yeah, it's country.  Which is why I love it so much.  A lot of other genres have either dance, love, or sex songs.  Country has this too, obviously, but there's also little towns, mama, and trains.  ;-)  (Although, when it's a country singer with a sex song--or even suggestive--usually the singer's married.  Most notably, Josh Turner and Dierks Bentley).

Brad Paisley sums it up nicely.