Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Year in Review--Well, Books in Review.

Books/Stories Read:  121

Words Written:  Yeah, I was GOING to do this, but I don't feel like going through all the months in review.  Anyway, I did okay, I did poorly, anyway, moving on...

Books Bought:  359

Which amounted to $1,141.95

Books In the Catalog: 1,283

Books Read:  552

Books Unread:  613

Books Not The Kind to Read Cover-to-Cover:  118

VERY IMPORTANT NOTE:  I do have some duplicate copies of books.  So, the numbers for read and not-read are a little off, by about a book or two each.  Because even if I've only read a book once, but have two copies, I will count both as read.  Likewise, if I have two copies of a book I have not read, they are both marked unread, so, take about 2 or 3 off each one.  The following math takes the not-read-duplicates into account.

610 books, proper, to read.

610 books / 12 months = 50.8 books/month

610 / 24 = 25.4 books/month

Hey look, MATH.

One year?  Heh, dream on.  Two years?  Doable.  Difficult, but doable, granted I completely stopped buying books and just read what I had.  Nope, not gonna happen.  Still.

For 2015, I will read as many books and write as many words as my life allows.  Sometimes it's good, sometimes it's bad.

Also, I'm gonna go through my library again, and get rid of some books too.  We'll see, we'll see.

For now, I gotta finish straightening up my room and finding spots for the books for now.  And all that.

Happy New Year.

May your upcoming year be filled with books and words and love and laughter.

December in Review -- Clean Up, Clean Up, Everybody Clean Up

Books/Stories Read:  15

Books on the Currently Reading Shelf:  12

Approximate Word Count:  5,519

Yeah, I should be trying to finish all these books with bookmarks.  Nope, I'm rearranging my room.  So, it's a safe bet, I can go ahead and do all of this.

  • Light My Fire by G. A. Aiken, paranormal romance/smut, 4 stars
    • Celyn the Charming's book.  This is the first time I've ever had to wait for an Aiken.  Worth waiting for.  DRAGON KIN!!!
  • Finding Miss McFarland by Vivienne Lorett, historical romance, 4 stars
    • This one tied in with the other two really well.  Will she become a brand name?  Maybe.  Decent.  Good finish.
  • Suicide Notes by Michael Thomas Ford, YA/LGBT, 4 stars
    • Look at me, reading LGBT interest.  Anyway, it's a good book for teenagers.  I'm past that stage where I like teen smartasses, Holden Caulfield types, but it's a good book.  Suicide, depression, the problems that come with being gay, the whole nine yards.  If you can see past your bigotry, read it.  If you want to read a story about a bunch of children in the psych ward in a hospital, read it.  Read it, read it, read it.  I read it in a night.
  • Tempting Mr. Weatherstone by Vivienne Lorett, historical romance, 4 stars
    • The prequel to the Wallflower Weddings.  Oh my gosh, it was a novella and still had an awesome blow-up.  Good, good.
  • Kiss of Christmas Magic anthology, paranormal romance/smut
    • "Caribou's Gift" by Eve Langlais, 3 stars
      •  Cute little paranormal romance.  Caribou.  The guy was a caribou.  Who knew the words to "Let it Go" from Frozen.  Makes me want to read the other books in this series.
    • "Hunted Holiday" by Mandy Roth, 2 stars
      • Fluff.  Vampire fluff.  That is all.  IT'S SO FLUFFY I'M GONNA DIE!
    • "Lost in Winter" by Viola Rivard, 3 stars
      • Bears.  I love me some bear shifters.  Pretty decent.
    • "Kissed by Temptation" by Deeanna Chase, 3 stars
      • I want to read more books by this author.  I had one on Kindle that I've had forever, but clearly I need to read more of hers.  Sex witch.  With an incubus.  And pretty impressive, overall.
    •   "Bear Witness" by Michele Bardsley, 3 stars
    • "Christmas to Bear" by Carina Wilder, 3 stars
  • The Naked Gentleman by Sally Mackenzie, historical romance, 3 stars
  • Two characters that had been a long time coming.  Pretty okay.

  • Dresden Files:  War Cry by Jim Butcher, graphic novel, 4 stars
    • DRESDEN.  RAMIREZ!  Of course, it was amazing.

  • The Game Plan by R. L. Mathewson, contemporary erotic romance, 4 stars
    • Neighbor from Hell!  She's getting better as she goes along.

  •  The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien, classic fantasy, 4 stars
    • Yeah, yeah, I'm just now reading it.  I endeavor to read more classics.  Whatever.  Thorin and Fili and Kili all died.  What the hell?  Anyway, moving on...

  • Something from the Nightside by Simon Green, urban fantasy, 4 stars
    • Took me way longer than it should have, and scarred me for life toward the end.  I already have 1-4, and some other odds and ends through the series.  I'm continuing.

Friday, December 19, 2014

I Lived

In my opinion, a song’s value is based on how relatable it is.  Kinda.  I mean, I like a lot of love songs, but I have nobody to think about.  I listen to a lot of country, about people who do a lot of things I don’t do, but I still listen to it, and say it’s realistic and stuff.

I like Rich Mullins’ music because very often I’ve felt similar things in my stumbling faith.  I like prodigal songs, and I think that’s telling.  I like songs that talk about doubts and yearning and begging for forgiveness.  But that’s a post for another day.

Ed Sheeran is one of those singers that’s hit and miss.  On one hand, he’s really good.  On the other, when he sings about his actual career, the relatability gets lost in it.  Yes, we’ve all felt like that, but we don’t all go on tour.

I got into OneRepublic because I liked the song that played in The Sorceror’s Apprentice.  I got into Ed Sheeran the same way.  I liked the song that played at the end of The Desolation of Smaug and had to look the singer up.

One Republic’s Native album was on sale one day, and some of their other stuff, and I figured, well, I like “Counting Stars” and I like OneRepublic, so why not?

“I Lived” is playing on the radio.  Not on my radio.  I have the album, I don’t need a radio, but it’s a single and it plays on the radio.  No, I haven’t seen any of their videos.

It makes me wanna do things.  There’s a lot of things I’ve never done.  It makes me wish I had a more adventurous spirit and that I took more chances.  I’ve never been in love.  I’ve never visited outside the country.  I’ve never been out of the South, actually.  I’ve never been bungee jumping or gone on a mission trip.  I’ve never broken anything.  When I look at my life thus far, I haven’t done much.  Read a lot of books, wrote a few of my own.  I’ve gone to concerts and road trips.  I’m hoping to graduate with my bachelor’s in May.

I’m young, I think.  I haven’t had much oppurtunity.  I won’t always be so busy.  Or so I hope.  I also hope I don’t put it off so long that my life passes me by and soon it’s too late.

At the end of my life, I wanna say

I, I, I
I did it all
I, I, I
I did it all
I owned every second that this world could give
I saw so many places, the things that I did
Yeah with every broken bone
I swear I lived

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Holy Rollin'

We visited some old friends in their new church today.  When I say old friends, I mean, old, old, OLD friends.  Like, when we first moved to Mississippi old.

They're missionaries at heart.  Good, godly, people.  They want to reach the lost and shine light in the darkness.  All that.

Good, good, good people.  God's best.

So, we found this little old church in the middle o' nowhere where they are preaching.  The singing was good, the message good too.

When we were going to their church a long time ago, I was still in elementary school.

My fingers were covered in warts, like over a hundred.  I am not exaggerating.  I counted them.  That was my morbid little hobby in those days, counting how many warts I had on my fingers.  For the longest time it was at a little over 60, but before it was all over I had over a hundred.  At a women's retreat, my mother was told to have my hands prayed over.  When she got back, my hands got prayed over, and slowly my warts went away.

So, today, I was wearing an over sized sweater with sleeves that covered my hands.  I like stuff that covers my hands.  I don't know if that's leftover from those days as a child when I would just always cover my hands so the warts didn't show, or if I just like stuff that covers my hands for the heck of it.  Hey, there's leftover sleeves, let me tuck my hands in them.

The pastor's wife checked my hands.  She pulled my sleeves back and asked me if I remembered when they were covered in warts and how they were prayed over and taken away.

I don't talk about it a lot.  Part of it is because, well, it's a weird story.  A little girl's hands were covered in warts and now I don't have anymore because of prayer.  I don't want to be seen as a holy roller, someone you can't talk to because I'm too religious.  Another part of it is that I just don't think about it that much, I was a little kid.  As an adult, albeit a young one, it really wasn't a big deal.  I mean, I was self-conscious about it and it bothered me, but it's not like I had cancer or anything.  In the grand scheme of things, it sounds like a really minor problem.  There are kids out there starving and I'm worried about a bunch of skin problems.  I feel like I was a silly child.

It's not the kind of story you tell at testimony time, at least, I don't.  The point of this story, I think, is that God cares about the little things too.  If it bothers you, it bothers Him. 

It's the only miracle I've ever had happen to me.  Largely, I come from a blessed background.  No poverty, no one close to me has ever had cancer or died.  I mean, sure, there have been deaths in the family, but no one I really grieved for, except, perhaps Maw Trudy, which is a story for another day. 

There are bigger problems out there.  It's the closest thing to a miracle I've ever witnessed, period.  I hear a lot of stories, but that's the only one I've ever seen, personally.

After church, we the family started reminiscing.  "Do you remember..." 

As a twenty-something with very little idea of what she believes, if she believes anymore, and wondering if any of it's true or not, it was nice to visit with these people.  No matter what I believe, these people do believe.  They have seen miracles.  They believe in "it was a God thing."  It's real to them.

Whether or not God still wants anything to do with me, or vice versa, God is working in these people's lives.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

November in Review

Books Read: 3

Books on the Currently Reading Shelf on Goodreads: 13 (but I have more that I have bookmarks in that I didn't mark on Goodreads.

Approximate Word Count: ~7,508

It was a busy month, k?

Book List:

  • The Escape by Mary Balogh, historical romance, 5 stars
    • Book 3 of the Survivors' Club.  Very, very, very good.  I expect no less.
  • Winning Miss Wakefield by Vivienne Loret, historical romance, 4 stars
    • Pretty decent.  Liked the characters.
  • Confessions at Midnight by Jacquie D'Alessandro, historical romance, 3 stars
    • I didn't like it as much as the first one, but it was okay.