Monday, February 28, 2011

3 Good Things

I made this yummy Cinnamon Carrot Bread the other day. I had to use canola oil, added more cinnamon, used 3 carrots instead of one and a friend suggested I add a pinch of nutmeg. You can alter it how you choose and be aware that it will look more like a cookie dough then a cake batter.

I finished reading Fool Moon, the second book in the Dresden Files series and am still wanting to go back for more. Harry Dresden is a very intriguing character. I did get a little miffed with his cop friend Murphy, but you were supposed to so good job there Jim Butcher. I look forward to the third installment which I will order from the library in a few days.

I almost done with Lost in a Good Book, the second in the Thursday Next series, and it is just as amazing as the first one. The world Mr. Fforde has created is just so surreal and so much fun and chaotic, I love it. This falls under the "wish I wrote it" category for me.

That's all folks!


Monday, February 21, 2011

All the little things

We were supposed to do a lovely brunch and museum trip yesterday, but the friends we were to meet had an appointment with a realtor. Ah, the excitement of house shopping and seeing lots of good stuff and bad stuff. Instead we grabbed ourselves a nice breakfast and then went to see our little ladies. They are just so darn adorable!!!!!

I was really enjoying seeing our back yard again, but of course, there is snow on the ground again.

My netbook got a lovely spy ware/mal ware virus and no longer works. As a writer, I am freaking out, but fortunately I use an online server as backup so the most important stories are saved. We had to order a new computer which sucks, but it is what it is.

I am loving the show Downton Abbey. Shocking how the importance of class and distinction was all important so soon as the early 1900's. Marrying the right person, having a lady's maid, etc.


Wednesday, February 16, 2011

How to Fold a Fitted Sheet

Hello again. I am much better today. I am redoing my query letter and getting ready to go see a massage client, so things are looking up :)

I wanted to share this video because I may be one of the only people in the free world who cannot fold a fitted sheet. I tried this video only moments ago and it seems I lack serious folding skills. They say practice makes perfect, so yes, I will be trying this again later.

Amusing to think that folding a sheet properly is a highlight of my day.

Oh, favorite word of the day is obtuse.


Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Hello, I am Miss Crabby

Between a combination of not having a paying job, editing this blasted novel and needing a serious vacation, I am slowly melting down. Yes, I have hit that wall and sort of snapped.
Sometimes a drive can fix this or visiting our friend's triplets, but I don't see it working this time.
Too bad it is not warmer out, I would go for a walk in a local park to help clear my head.
My dog whining all morning is not helping my mood either. Good times.
I am sure this will pass. At least I hope it does. Though I am betting that laying on a beach somewhere and having a beer in the sun would be very helpful. Too bad I cannot test the idea out. Grumble, grumble, grumble.

Okay, enough moping. Music is usually a big help getting me out of my doldrums. I did not watch the Grammy's, but I read about this young lady Janelle Monae and she is incredibly talented.

Another stellar young woman I admire is Adele. What a voice these two women have.

My story beckons so regardless of my piss mood, I am going to make it happen.


Saturday, February 12, 2011

The Eyre Affair...

Was wonderful!
This was one of the most original and unusual concepts I have ever read. And yes, I am have already ordered the second book from my library. This is one enjoyable wacky and unusual series. Perhaps I am getting ahead of myself, but I love Thursday Next and all her compatriots and nemeses. The references to other famous characters and pieces of literature and British culture was so well done throughout the novel. Impressive, very impressive. Neil Gaiman came to mind a few times and I wonder if he ever read this book because I think he would get a kick out of it.
I also need to check out Fforde's Nursery Crime series. Seems it is along the same line but with Nursery Rhymes. Good times indeed!
I am now going to start reading Storm Front, the first book in the Harry Dreseden series. My fingers are crossed as I am hoping I am on a roll with finding stuff I will enjoy reading series wise.
My Kindle arrive and I admit, I am addicted and cannot wait to start downloading books.


Tuesday, February 8, 2011


Thanks to Amazon's little "Trade In" button for a third party buyer, we got rid of a decent amount of DVD's and books we no longer needed or used. Because of this, we will soon be the proud owners of a Kindle. And it cost us all of $25.00.
Yeah Baby!
When I mentioned to one of my dear friends that we would be getting one she said, "I don't think I would like that. I prefer to hold a book." To which I replied, "So do I, but if we go somewhere on a trip, (stop laughing at my fantasies), or I want to read something just out right away, BAM! There it is."
I understand why people are opposed to the idea. Books will die, you need to hold it, but in truth, it is just an extra way to read for me. I read stuff now on my computer and I still buy books or take them out of the library. Certain books I prefer to pull fro the library first before purchasing anyway. Cookbooks being one of them.
Erotica, which is NOT easy to come by in a library, is easier to get online. Jasmine Jade Enterprises who publish A LOT of that, will know me soon enough. I can get free e-books there and at Project Gutenberg, whom I just noticed have Agatha Christie and Paradise Lost, awesome!
My grubby little hands will still hold books, but its the idea of having access to even more stuff that makes me giddy. This also gives me a way to support more writers with purchases as well. Put it this way, we are jazzed and I cannot wait to get this darn contraption and start using it.

And by the way, I am serious glutton for punishment. My library currently has on hold at my request, The Eyre Affair: A Thursday Next Novel. I read about this series yesterday, thanks to the fine blog Smart Bitches Trashy Books, and decided to check it out. To go one better, I even ordered Storm Front (The Dresden Files Book 1) because numerous readers on said blog suggested that series was a good one. Yeah, yeah, I am a hypocrite, but at least I am a well read one. ;-)


Monday, February 7, 2011

Holiday in Death by J.D.Robb

Well, this is it, my last one. I made it to book seven, Holiday In Death, which is pretty good and I may pick up book eight at some point, but don't hold your breath.
Why should it matter to me if "sculpture" is used to describe the profession instead of the correct word, "sculptor"? Why should I care if main character Eve Dallas chides Peabody for dating a suspect, when she did the exact same thing in the first book, then married him? Why do I care if within five pages every single character is "jamming their hands into their pockets"? Why? Why can't I just read the damn books for pleasure and not be bothered by misses on the editor and author's part? Why? Because I am a cad, a snob and someone who wants to read a story and not get tripped up by nonsensical bullshit like I mentioned. Things like that should not make me do a double take half way through a book. But they do. What does surprise me is the amount of praise these books get, yes I am going to speak plainly here and piss people off. Reviews claim these "mysteries" to be intense and brilliant and fans think it is the best writing in the world.
Uhhh, no.
Look, there is room for all types of novels, good and bad, but I am sick and tired of reading more bad then good. Why the hell can't a strong female character just be strong without some hideous horrors of the past? Can't she just be a cop because she wanted to? Why does she have to be a bumbling idiot who cannot fire a gun, yet can maintain her job as a bounty hunter? There has got to be a series out there with a strong protagonist who does not need deep, dark secrets and can wear mascara and take out a criminal. Why is it one or the other with these authors? Authors who happen to be women no less. You wield a pen and have the power to create and yet you give me the same freakin' drivel heaped out over the decades. I do not want the romance to be the main part of the story either. Why can't it just happen? Have it as back story or something that just happens because that is how life happens. Yes, there is romance in my book, but dammit, it is not the most crucial part and it is not all that makes up my character. Christ, if I had her fight him every step of the way like Eve fights Roarke, she would be killed by my own hand. I would love to shake Eve and say "You married a billionaire who loves you, get over it and live your life and continue to be a good cop". Instead we go through every book with her still adjusting to his wealth and love of her. He admires her courage, her strength, her just breathing and always has to tell her she is his "only". What is this? High school?
Sad that I let a book bother me so much, but dammit, when you are in the same profession, you want the standards met and exceeded. I challenge myself to be better every time I type. No, I do not succeed and who is to say I will ever make it to print, but dammit, I want better material out there. I want authors to mess with my head when it is a mystery, not let me figure it out in twenty five pages or less.
Well, that is it, I just had to get that off my chest. Sorry Nora, you have others who love you and will love book 40, so I doubt my opinion matters to you. If I can make a small request though, please, proof read your writing better okay? I am sure someone else is annoyed by these little mistakes. Not as much as me, but trust me, Amazon reviews are helpful and telling. Read them The 3 stars and less. Not the 4 and 5, that will just keep you complacent.

Now I will get back to reading "Wonder Boys" by Michael Chabon. Rock on.


Friday, February 4, 2011

House Envy

We all have it. There are those who will deny it, but in truth, a lot of us covet a kitchen, a closet and a bathroom of either a dear friend, wealthy celebrity or blogger.
Now, some of the houses may be too sparse or too clean/minimalist/white or too expensive, but I can respect great design regardless.
I came across this blog Honey We're Home and when I saw some of their rooms, I literally almost fell off my couch. The closet, the mudroom, the kitchen, very elegant and not necessarily my style, but yet, I wanted it. I mean, I find the Tory Burch box displays in the closet a bit much BUT, they stand almost as art pieces. As I looked at the pictures that is when it hit me. I have serious house envy.
I love our little house and it is a work in progress and will be for some time until we get more cash and can do things they right way without going to the poorhouse. That being said, I cannot help but get a little green when I see a home done the way I would like mine to look. I see wonderful touches for the home, like at this store Harabu House, and green up that I cannot afford such a luxury. I am not alone, this economy makes gum a luxury.
As shallow as this seems and no we do not need "things", I still want these delicate and elegant touches. I am not afraid to admit that sometimes I look at all these home sites and get a twinge of jealousy. There is something about design, good design, that brings a smile to my face. I think most people do want to surround themselves with pretty things, things they enjoy and love. Some have sentimental value, some were recommended by Dwell. No matter where we get our house envy or decor envy, it does say something interesting about who we are. What stirs the envy? Is it the color or the layout? Is it because you never thought of doing it that way and when you see it, it strikes you? Was it the gardens? The patio or the soaking tub? Why? Because it denotes money in our society or because you want to have a little luxury before you pass from this great world? House envy is not as simple as I thought. It makes me think and wonder what I am trying to say about myself, if anything at all.
Allow me to end this post with further insanity. Glorious and stunning, I love Oceanside Glasstile. Check my link to the bathroom gallery. (I have yet to do kitchen or other rooms, God help me.) I am in love with the Tessera collection, especially the Incense color.
And that my friends is all I got today.


Thursday, February 3, 2011

Bold Colors

I have always loved bold colors in a house. White rooms are lovely, but not practical to me in my world. What I most enjoy is when people are inventive about their color and location choices. In the post below by Apartment Therapy, I really love all of them, even if I would not choose to do it in my own home.

Heather's Coral Kitchen is beautiful and warm. Coral is not a good color for me to wear so I would never think to use it elsewhere, but this is very inspirational.

Colour Wash - This bathroom in LivingEtc is sensual.


Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Poetry, Painting to Earn an M.D.

I know, a double post, so not like me, but as a fan of the arts and medicine, this article from the Wall Street Journal is spot on. Humanities certainly deserve a place in medicine and I am glad to see Universities finally understanding the significance of such a thing. Enjoy.


More reading

I have finally finished reading The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. It started it out very sloooooooow, but then when it picked it up, it shot out of the gate at over one hundred miles an hour. The story was really something and I am glad I read it after seeing the movie. As far as reading the other two books in the trilogy, I am not so sure I will. Or at least, not right now. My taste for reading series novels is still not a hundred percent, though I am still moving forward with the In Death series by J.D. Robb. For me it is quick, popcorn reading and fun. But when I recently read "Vengeance In Death", I shook my head when I was done. There were quite a few mistakes in the novel. Missing punctuation and conjunctions, a characters name changed from John to Liam by the middle of the novel, stupid mistakes that should have been caught by either author or editor. An odd irritating point for me was that the main characters Eve and Roarke have predictable sex, don't we all?, but even some of the dialogue is rote in the bedroom. I do love when Roarke teases Eve and it makes me laugh out loud without fail. He is a great smart ass and if he were a real life character I would want an hour with him ravishing me. There I admitted it and will go down in history as a pervert.
What worries me is the formula is too easy to crack and this is supposed to be a mystery series. As someone pointed out on Amazon, "half the time you are unsure if you are reading a romance series or a mystery series. The books themselves do not know what they want to be." I had to agree.
At this point, the series is up to it's 40th book which is pretty incredible, but all the author has to do is come up with a violent death scenario and insert it where the others had gone before. Same with sex scenes. As the series progresses I do know we find out more about Roarke and Eve's pasts and what made them who they are today. That is probably pretty interesting since Roarke is quite the mysterious man. It does make me wonder though if that will be the only thing left to be interesting since the crimes themselves are really not.
The question I have is, even if you love the character(s), isn't there a time to bow out gracefully? Sure if the author enjoys writing it, why should they stop? Especially if they have fans to the high heavens who constantly clamor for an update to the lives of the characters. I guess I cannot imagine wanting to keep the same characters alive, their personal growth happening or not, for such a long stretch. For me, the mystery of what happens is sometimes a good thing. I do not need to know what happens at every turn in every novel. Let my imagination take it where I want and you go about your business churning out a fine book. This is just my personal preference, not a professional one.
What I want to really ask is, putting out such a vast amount of books at a time, does this make the writer, of any series really, a hack or prolific? I am no longer sure. As I edit one novel and work on another, I guess I could be seen as prolific, but I don't see it that way. I want my work to not be formulaic, though it will be because all books are in the end. A good story is a good story and I have ones I want to tell and hope you want to read, that is all. Sure anything I write or that anyone writes could become a series, but I will leave the series to the authors who do it best or at least, can crank it out better then most. And of course, I am not so sure I will ever be a fan of reading the series novels, but I am always willing to still try.