Links and Things for May 11, 2012

I’m afraid this is going to be a short one today. I’ve been busy this week and haven’t had as much time as I usually do to devote to reading blogs and engaging in media in general. But I did happen across a few cool things I wanted to share.

Blog Posts of Note

Too Smart for Kids: A Promise to the Readers of Fairyland by Catherynne Valente – Because books should be challenging and reading for kids is an act of discovery. Yes, yes, yes.

Vocabulary  by Christie Yant – Discusses the joy of learning new vocabulary while reading. I’m lazy and often try to glean the meaning of a word I don’t know from context alone. Since a Kindle has been added to my life, I can look up words as I go. My desire to learn new words and my laziness are satisfied.

Using Index Cards to Plan Short Fiction Submissions by Michael Haynes – It’s exactly what it sounds like but I think I need to do something similar if I want to get all these languishing stories off my hard drive and back out into the world.

Free Fiction

“An Old Acquaintance” by K.G. Jewell

What I’m Reading

I finally finished Unholy Magic by Stacia Kane. It’s really a quick read, I was just reading slow, if that makes sense. Super fun and I recommend the whole series so far. I may read the next book in this series, City of Ghosts or maybe something else like Blackbirds by Chuck Wendig. Not sure what I’ll dive into next. Anybody have suggestions?

What have you found this week? Leave it in the comments!

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The Stories I Will Tell My Child

“We’ll eat you up, we love you so.”

So say the Wild Things in Where the Wild Things Are when Max is leaving the land of rumpuses and heading back home. Upon hearing the news that Maurice Sendak died, my first thought was about how I’d be reading this story to my daughter once she’s old enough. How important it is for both Matt and I to pass on the things we loved as children to our little girl. And I was filled with a sense of sadness at life and the ends of things and how happiness is only fleeting.

Yes, I waxed philosophical. I can’t help it. Everything makes me think about my soon-to-be-new role as a mom. And it terrifies me and excites me and makes me want to be better in every possible way. I wonder will I be good enough? Will she hate me? WIll she think back on her childhood when she’s an adult and think, “Hey, my parents did they best they could”?

I don’t know the answers to these questions, but I know one thing for certain. I’ll be reading Where the Wild Things Are, and A Wrinkle in Time, and The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making. Matt will read her The Hobbit, and The Stinky Cheese Man, and The Velveteen Rabbit. And our daughter will know and love books and stories and the imaginary worlds where the impossible, for just one moment, seems possible.

We’ll do that part right. I know it.

Links and Things for May 4, 2012

Wow, this week went by fast. Which means that it’s time for my obligatory post about things I found interesting for the week. I just include links to things that came across my Twitter feed or that I encountered throughout the week. It’s not scientific, but hopefully you enjoy some of the stuff I found.

Blog Posts of Note

“Magic in the Library” by Sam Webb – Libraries are filled with wonder. I thought this post captured the magic that’s found between the card catalogues and bookshelves well.

“Advice on Advice” by Michael Haynes – This was a guest post on my blog, but I thought I’d link to it here because it’s good to remind ourselves once in a while that not all advice is equal.

“Around and Around the Writer’s Carousel: Comparisons Are Evil” by Me – Yeah, it’s narcissistic to link to my own blog post, but it was my offering to Michael’s blog. It was a fun experiment and it’s likely I’ll be offering (and posting) more guest posts in the near future.

“Tax Me, for F@%&’s Sake” by Stephen King – It’s been said before but it needs to be said again and again by more people of wealth and status. Plus, King’s tone is biting and appropriate for the anger sweeping across the country.

Free Fiction

I read a lot of fantastic fiction this week in the Daily Science Fiction email subscription. Of course, I can’t link to those yet. Next week! Other stories I found interesting and fun for the week are included below:

“Heads You Win” by Lydia S. Gray

“Dolly at the End of the World” by Amanda C. Davis

Film Recommendation

Midnight in Paris – I loved this film. I was worried at first it may devolve into pretension, but considering it’s a Woody Allen film, it quickly dismisses (and despises) those with pretentious attitudes and uplifts our everyman artist protagonist, Gil. It wasn’t afraid to be romantic, to delve into nostalgia. Oftentimes, writers are told to dismiss the romantic side of “being a writer” because this doesn’t ultimately help shape your craft. But if heading down memory lane helps you realize something essential about the present and your work, what’s the harm? Plus, the depictions of famous 1920’s authors and artists are alone worth a view .

What I’m Reading

Unholy Magic by Stacia Kane – Still. Yes, I’m the slowest reader ever. But I’m still enjoying this book a lot. Every scene counts and Chess is a flawed character that you can’t help liking because she reads as authentic. Plus, this entire series so far is fun.

Did you find anything cool this week? Leave it in the comments. I’d love to hear about it 🙂

Links and Things for Friday April 27, 2012

It’s that time again. Where I go back through what I’ve retweeted or generally enjoyed in the previous week and share some linkage with you all.

Blog Posts of Note

“The Greatest Writing Advice You Will Ever Receive Anywhere Ever” at After Ever After

Hilarious and true. I don’t want to spoil it, so just read it.

“How I Get Back Up When I Fall Down” by Carrie Cuinn

An insightful and inspiring look at how to keep going, even when life gets in the way of your goals. In short: just keep writing.

“The Big Idea: Chuck Wendig” by uhh Chuck Wendig

About the inspiration behind his novel, Blackbirds. It’s much more interesting than my description of it. Really. I promise.

“DIY: Creating My Own eBook, Part One” by Michael Haynes

Have you ever thought about self-publishing a short story, novella, novel, poetry collection, whatever? This post offers a step-by-step look and building an eBook for Kindle Direct Publishing. Straightforward and useful.

Free Fiction

“A Special Day” by Shannon Fay

“Machine Washable” by Keffy R.M. Kehrli

What I’m Reading

Unholy Magic by Stacia Kane. I put Shadows Linger off to the side for a bit and now I’m enjoying book 2 of the Downside series. I don’t normally read urban fantasy, but this series is hard not to love. It’s fast-paced and suspenseful as hell. A fine example of tight, polished writing.

And another week draws to a close. Going to Disneyland tomorrow because it’s my birthday today! I’m twenty…*mumbles* and very much looking forward to another day in the sun. It’s good to get away from the computer once in a while. 🙂