Book One

These are in no particular order, but since last month was PRIDE, I figured I would start with one that means a lot to the kinda scared, closeted kid I was when I first read it.

I first read Fried Green Tomatoes in the early to mid 90’s or about the time the movie came out. It was pretty eye opening for someone from a small town in Mississippi during the birth of Grunge. This book gave me Idgie and though there’s not a lot that we have in common, there are a few big things we share: disdain for women’s clothing and a love for Ruth being the two most prominent. It was amazing and the first time I had anything close to a real role model in print.

Fannie Flagg has grown a lot as a writer, but this book remains a favorite. It’s about friendship, love, and barbecue and it’s written in a nonlinear style. At 20 or thereabouts, it was everything I could have wanted in a book.

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10 Books

There’s this thing going around Facebook where people are listing so many books that personally touched them. I’ve really liked those posts as it’s very interesting to see what books friends have chosen. I decided to pick ten and share them here. As a constant reader as well as a writer, I appreciate the books that have left their marks on people, even if I didn’t always like them myself.

There are books that we love, that we visit again and again and these are the books I plan on listing. I have a separate list for scholarly books, books that I read through the course of school and still have feel the lingering effects of them. It’s the difference between best and favorite.

Starting tomorrow I’ll detail the list of favorite books. I’ll try to include pictures from my personal library when applicable. Some I no longer have due to natural disasters and moving and other events.

Be safe.

New Release

Two years ago the drought broke and I started writing again. I had not written in a long time, at least not consistently. In that time period, I’ve managed to finish three novels. I’ve just published the first to Amazon.

I had published three already, ones that I had written several years ago. I really did not care to much if they did well or not. I was testing the water mostly. This one though, I feel as if I just sent my baby off into the world. I’ll have very few ways of knowing if people like it. I feel almost the same as when I walked my daughter in for her first day of school.

Anyway, available now is Murders at the Lille Mansion. It’s a mystery. I have a sequel planned. Actually I have several parts to the sequel written, I just stopped it for Nanowrimo and finally finished that project. It’s now in final beta.

Be safe everyone.

Found and Adopted Day (Observed)

Five or six years ago (I’ve lost my ability to tell time in the past tense as I’ve gotten older) my daughter and I had stepped outside the place we were living and noticed a Yorkie sitting in the driveway. I had seen the dog before, for the week prior I had caught glimpses of her during the torrential rainstorms. I texted my wife to bring bait and what ensued was about an hour of me, my wife, and our four year old playing catch that puppy.

I managed to catch her and she collapsed against me. She was shivering. She was covered in fleas and ticks. What really blew our minds was she was a full blooded Yorkshire Terrier and she had been fixed (she had the tattoo).

My wife of course was determined we were not going to keep her. We already had two shihtzus and we seemed to be feeding half the stray cats in the neighborhood.  However, our daughter fell in love with Millie. I took her to the vet and she was even chipped. That’s how we found her name. We never were able to contact the original owner though, we tried for days. Finally we stopped trying when we realized how devastated our daughter would be if the dog was claimed.

So since Easter is never the same day, we celebrate Millie’s found day on Easter Sunday. It was a little more poignant that Easter was the first after my mother had passed and Easter had been her favorite holiday. It seemed destined almost that we caught Millie that day. Now, years later, we wouldn’t have it any other way. IMG_20180225_155832.jpg

Five books ahead

In my Goodreads Challenge, I’ve read 10 out of the 30 I had set as a goal. My wife was surprised I had set the bar at 30 and not at more. Honestly, I may increase it. There are so many books out there that I want to read and so many more that I may not know about yet. But of course with a full time job, a wife and kid, three dogs, one cat and a writing habit it does make it a little difficult to squeeze things in to a day.  Even editing and revising my own work seems to take a backseat to everything else though that’s mostly because I feel as if I don’t get the story on paper it’ll never happen.

Anyway, the books that count toward my goal this time were a few graphic novels. Some people think graphic novels are cheating, but I don’t. I also read god is not Great by Christopher Hitchens. This book was informative and full of knowledge and a little condescending. Apparently that’s Hitchens in a nutshell.

I finished a what if retelling of an American Fairy tale as well, The Secret of Sleepy Hollow by Andi Marquette This reevaluated the Legend of Sleepy Hollow and provided a sweet lesfic romance. I liked it.

I am having a hard time finding a few of my personal goal books at my local library. Don’t tell my wife, but I may have to order one or two. As we get closer to the midyear point, I’ll reevaluate my goal and perhaps make it larger.

That’s it for this edition. Stay safe.

 

 

Cross off two more

I recently finished two more books and while they count toward my Goodreads goal, they don’t count toward the list of books I had compiled to read this year. That’s ok, it’s only March. Wait, March? Wasn’t it just January? I guess it is true that the older you get the shorter the years get.

So I read Backwards to Oregon by Jae and was completely blown away by the fact that she’s German. It’s a very well researched and detailed novel and I loved the characters.  I wish I had been as impressed with the other book I read, How to write Pulp Fiction.  That one was more of a composite of other books and interviews. I will say that at least it’s helpful to have it all in one place.

As to the status of my works, well I got a rejection notice for my lesfic romance novel. It’s just the first so there are many more to get 🙂 It’s a bit of a confidence let down, but writers are the ultimate rejection letter collectors. Besides, I’ve got three works in progress, two to revise and a couple of short stories that are trying to get my attention.

Until next time, stay safe.

The Rodent Who Came to Dinner Part 2

Where was I? Oh yeah. We’re all at home, snuggled in the bed watching Naked and Afraid XL, because that’s what we do, when D heard a scratching sound come from under the bed. Immediately we look for the three dogs and the cat. All are accounted for. WTF, right? Right. It’s the rodent.

Further chasing of rat ensues as one shih tzu sleeps on the bed while the yorkie and I are trying to catch this thing and the wife and daughter are out in the car. The damn rat runs across the headboard, leaps for the bedside table, falls off the lamp and tries to climb up the wall. The shih tzu is still asleep. He in fact remains asleep until I strip the bed of sheets that now had maybe come into contact with rodent feet. Thanks, Dash. You just wait there, buddy.

D and E end up going to a hotel/motel for the night, because obviously no one is sleeping in that room until there’s a dead rat. Or at least until my loving, big hearted wife sees the carcass (Seriously. She demanded to see the remains.)

Fast forward an hour or so. It’s past midnight. I’m on the couch in the living room with three dogs, only one of which is actively trying to help and a cat who has apparently gone on strike. I have the mallet and the high-powered bb gun my dad gave me when I lived near water in case snakes got in the yard. After about three am I started falling asleep feeling a lot like Private Pyle from Full Metal Jacket.

The yorkie and I did manage to almost catch the damn thing. In fact, we ended up trapping it in E’s room. E is 9. She’s brilliant and thrives on chaos. Her room looks like a landfill made up of books, shopkins and DC Superhero Girls. It’s a mess.

I slam a few more traps in there, complete with a huge glue one, (the yorkie managed to catch herself on that one), shut the door, stuff something between the door and the floor and fall into a heap of exhaustion on the couch. I promptly woke up at every little noise.

That morning, a friend came over to help with the Great Rat Chase of 2017. He was brave enough to enter the room while the yorkie and I kept up the guard in the hallway, alert and ready for it to make a run for it.

Finally though, M got it. We take a picture of the carcass, it gets posted to Facebook, the family comes home and I’m done.

Seems rather anticlimactic, but there you have it.