Best Books: Plays, Musicals, and Screenplays

Not everyone reads plays, or at least after the required reading in high school and college. I do. (And more than Shakespeare, though I do love Shakespeare.) I enjoy them the same way I enjoy novels. Not that I read them like crazy, because I just don’t encounter them as much. Well, with this list…

Movie Review: Arrival

Yes, this is a writing and reading blog. I do take the liberty of reviewing other entertainment, however, when I feel it is applicable to either the writing or reading life. Sometimes something is so good, that I might be stretching it a bit, and when I saw Arrival I knew that I wanted to…

Books That Changed My Life

The last four years have seen a lot of change in my life. Four years ago, my husband graduated from school and changed careers, and my last child at home went off to kindergarten. I started writing full-time and published a novel within nine months. Two years ago, we made the decision to take said-son…

Best Books: Literary Fiction

So, turns out lists of literary fiction are not that easy to find, unless you are looking for results from a particular year. That, however, is a list that I am not yet making. So I did my best. (Honestly, it’s not the easy to categorize literary fiction, anyhow. I’m pretty sure some of these…

Best Books: Picture Books

This wasn’t a list I was going to make. But then, I found myself with three adorable nephews and an Amazon Prime account for their birthdays. Now, I know some of the books that I have loved reading to my kids–and Lord knows I spent enough time researching the best and most classic books–but I…

Best Books: World Literature

Woah, this list took me a long time to scrape together. Please don’t make too much of it (as I have not read the vast majority of the books), but I wanted a place to start with titles that didn’t appear in my largely American- and Western European-heavy best books lists. This list is not…

Best Books: Nonfiction and Journalism

Continuing to list the Best Books and breaking it up by genre, we have now made our way to nonfiction and journalism. Actually, I compiled this one long ago, but the length of the list intimidated me into procrastinating on it. Plus, I would much rather be reading fiction, right? Maybe not. I have read…

Best Books: Sci-Fi/Fantasy

I have recently joined a science fiction/fantasy writers group in the area. I thought that since my first novel was magic realism, the second was fantasy, and the third will also be fantasy, it would behoove me to get a little more into the culture, to learn from it and to basically not be totally…

Read Local!

We are fast approaching the inaugural (their fancy way of saying first-ever-hopefully-of-many) Read Local Book Festival. The festival is a weekend-long event with general proceeds going to the libraries, and embraces local authors, bloggers, publishers, bookstores, and libraries from around the Triangle (Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill and beyond). It would be a great time for…

Best Books: His (and Her) Story

Another Best Books list, this time for the best history books of all time. This is one my husband and father-in-law would really enjoy. Personally, the titles are about to put me to sleep, so I think I’ll keep this list tucked away for when I need to do some research or am traveling somewhere.…

Making Good

Whew, baby! Just realizing that I have a back-logged guest post from before I went all disappeared from the flu and bronchitis. Many apologies to Sandra Danby, whose post was supposed to coincide with the release of her first novel, last month. I am intrigued that she wrote a book that seems very similar to…

You Learn Something New Every Day

There’s just no way for me to keep up with every book and writing and indie publishing site on the internet. There are too many, to begin with. And stuff on the internet tends to be transient. It’s in its nature. So I don’t have time to follow every blip on the screen. I tend…

Best Books: Hittin’ the Road

Continuing the list of “best books,” with a pretty long list of best travel writing. (Man! I love travel!) Note, once again, that I have not read all these. They are books I would like to read, and the list is compiled from a number of other best books lists. Some of these are fiction,…

WattPad Launch

What is Wattpad? In theory, many of you don’t need to be told, because, after all, it has 25,000,ooo users. In reality, however, I have found not a single person who knew what I was talking about at the word “Wattpad.” I had read a blurb about Wattpad in some sort of What’s New? section…

Laugh On Hold

It’s not easy to find a good laugh. But I often find myself thinking, “I sure could use a good laugh.” Comedy is tough business, which is why most nights when I go looking to laugh all I end up with is crossed eyes from an optical illusion and an urban definition for the phrase…