Tuesday, May 29, 2007


Earlier in the year I vowed to read about 50 paperback books this year. So far this is all I got. Actually there is one missing because I loaned it to Mum. Beau Crusoe was a very excellent historical romance, with the proper mix of dark and light.

So, that's not the book I want to talk about. That's not the book that dragged me down and made me not want to deal with reading anything but the cheap, illicit thrills that e-books bring. No, this is the culprit:

I saw the TV series. I read good reviews. Sure Meggish wasn't enthralled but she can be a poo so I chose to ignore her. I made it through the first book, and about halfway through this second one.


I have this problem with a certain genre of mystery novels and for some reason Dexter, though not really similar in any other ways, shared this trait. Awful characters. I don't mean poorly written, I mean assholes. Every single one of them. Main character. Romantic interest. Suspects. Often in mysteries this seems designed to make it difficult to tell who is guilty, but usually it makes me lose interest. I hate these guys, so why should I read any further?

I didn't. I skipped to the end, read the last five pages, and then deposited it in my "read" pile without any guilt.

I sought comfort in the above mentioned e-books. I read dozens and dozens. Light, fluffy wonderful e-books. Short often at the expense of any depth, but good like a bag of skittles.

The truth is though, that writers need to read, and not just little fluffy happy e-books. I needed to read real good literature. Stuff that at least has the potential to be better than I could ever hope to write. With this in mind, I managed to pull myself together and finish The Wind-Up Bird Chronicles. My favorite Murakami is still A Hard Boiled Wonderland at the End of the World followed by A Wild Sheep Chase, but as always, I enjoyed being confused.

Now, on to these. Three of these I've already started once, but think if I show just a little more fidelity I can finish them.

Any suggestions on what should come next?

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Taking Walks

There are times when I can't focus. I have a day stretched out ahead of me for writing and I'm all set with my tea and laptop and all that remains is for me to focus. Focus. Focus. Focus.

Instead my hands and impulses take over, and I'm reading half a dozen knitting blogs, my thoughts run in strange jagged paths that all lead away from my story, the hours go by, I can't stop checking my e-mail and for some reason the only thing I can keep straight in my mind is a smugly smiling James Spader.

Walk time.

The camera in my phone is a valuable tool that actually takes amazing photos (along with dozens of blurry ones). I've started taking pictures when on my little walks, or out with the boy, that inspire me.