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Monday, August 30, 2010

sbd

I'm listening to The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake and enjoying it, but I enjoyed it more before I looked up the author and discovered all the prizes and whatnot she got.

Maybe it's a case of being left out of the party, but I frequently get a sense of "what am I missing here?" when I discover that an author is hailed as somehow super-uber-author. Same thing happened with the Olive Kitteridge book. I don't get what sets that writing apart. The word choices? The book structure? The sense of despair? How readers respond to the whole package of writing/plot/characterization? Yo, in case I haven't made my POV clear, the books don't shift my view of the universe, or make me see life in a transformed way. They're good, but I wouldn't call them Holy Fuck, that's Some Literature for The Ages good.

Maybe I should take more classes in this writing gig--by the time I was done with art school, when it came to paintings, I no longer knew what I liked but I knew what was art. That supernatural talent didn't stick with me, dammmation.

Speaking of awesome skillz, this enhanced-reality-inside-our-reality thing is all the rage, isn't it. American Music had the same theme (although they weren't freaked out about the stories that rose up from the massages she gave) I guess supernatural talent-- that isn't worth spit on the save civilization market-- comes to quiet young women who are not particularly talented or ambitious in other ways.

Friday, August 27, 2010

hey YO!

should I talk about mockingjay? No, posted a short thing over at goodreads.
how's about whining about the end of summer? Naw, I do that every year and it's not really whine worthy.

How about this? A Chihuahua playing pool AND making little noises.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

best moment of vacation

There was this traffic jam on 495 that was a giant party. We all got out of our cars and walked around and talked to each other. As far as the eye could see cars, not moving. People wandering around.

Every now and then an emergency vehicle came zooming down the breakdown lane, giving us something to talk about (and making the people hanging around on the rail very nervous). There was a kid from a couple cars up jumping rope for at least ten minutes without missing. Someone else hauled out a tv and a group gathered around to watch some game.

other fun moments include kayaking, biking, trampolining and other active stuff--those all happened AFTER the traffic jam.

More good things later.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

local cheap writers group in search of

It's that time of year again, when I start searching for guests for CORW.

1. someone who can talk about setting up a blog and other web presences for authors. I suppose that means. . . hell. I have no idea because every year, in nearly every way, my own internet presence shrinks.
And if there's talk about
"branding" I break into hives. Except this isn't a talk for me so never mind that.


2. someone who can tell us all about POD/self-publishing vs vanity press/fate of MMPB/. . . in other words, all about the future of publishing. Since the present of publishing is pretty confusing for most of us, that would be nice too.

UPDATED: of course CT's own Don Linn would be our first choice.
UP-UPDATED: Damn. Brown-nosing didn't work after all. Still looking for this #2 speaker.

Booksquare's Kassia Krozser would be perfect but she's in freaking California.

Angela James would be great, but she's in Maryland (and we're too cheap even for that. Our stipend's $50 plus mileage and maybe one overnight if we really, truly have to)

Jane L of dearauthor would be fabulous, but she's . . . Um. . . I don't know where.

Maybe a Preditor/Editor person too, also, instead.

3. An agent. Someone from New York would be nice. If she didn't mind doing the trip in one day because we are so very cheap.

4. An editor. See above about cheapness.

what happens when the non-detail oriented goes hunting for details

The dogs spread themselves flat on the wooden floor so they can get as cool as possible. They take up a lot of room and their panting leaves small drool puddles everywhere they go...is that why these are the dog days of summer? Or is it something to do with the dog star? I'd look it up but I'm all researched out.

I spent way too much time researching Germanic titles of nobility. Too much time
1. because I should have been doing something else--not because I resented all the hunting through books and sites. I don't, not at all, but time was a-wasting. I should be hauling furniture around various rooms. And vacuuming.

2. because we're not using any of the information I discovered. Those honorifics do not translate. Our count (son of a count, actually, so Erbgraf rather than Graf) would be called His Illustriousness or Highborn (Hochgeboren). His unpleasant father is called Erlaucht or Illustrious Highness. From what I could figure out, our guy, the count's son, is a highness too. But since our guy is hanging around in England, he's not going to be called highness by the Brits. He's noble but not royal and a lot of readers know that counts don't get that royal treatment in GB, even if they do back home.

In our story, he's going to just be your grace. Notice the lower case? It would be capped in England but because we're writing for an American company, no capitals. So many picky details I learned and have already forgotten. In one eyeball and out the other so don't quiz me on any of it.

Hey, yo, dude, there will be many more picky bits to look up later. Or if there isn't, I'll find a tangent to follow because I freaking love this stuff.

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

SBD days later

Okay, I did the Florida Keys mystery books a year or so ago (Carl Hiaasen, Dave Barry, Lawrence Shames etc) and now I've stumbled onto the Hollywood mysteries.

So far, my favorite is pretty slick and has a lot of stereotyped characters and no one has any real humanity but it was funny and clever and the story-telling technique was purely fun. Death By Hollywood by Boccho, that guy who does all those TV shows. Then there are all those Harry Bosch books, but we know about them. And now I'm onto Jefferson Parker and some other author whose name escapes me and I'm too lazy to look up.

I've discovered a key component to a lot of the guys--they are devoted husbands from just about the time they discovered sex. The one true thing about them is their love for their wives, usually some girl that they met in high school and have loved steady and true ever since. And wouldn't you know it, early in the book or series, the wives either fall over dead or walks out on them. That leaves the window open for either the blindingly attractive high-class whore who scorns them (and then they get to scorn or reform her later) or some other bitter, complicated woman and the hero can sleep with her without appearing to be a scummy devil who lives up to the love-em-leave-em life of Hollywood. He probably can't stay with the bitter complicated woman because he's still in love with the absent wife. So there can be another gorgeous woman in the next book.