Friday Fifteen

Happy Friday, guys! It’s been a while since my last Friday Fifteen, but I’ve been busy with the work life and the writing life, and the throwing the squeaky toy for Bodo the Dog life. Fortunately, this is the Friday before Marathon Monday, aka the best day of the year, so I’m super excited to head into the weekend. Let’s get things started with a few book reviews in fifteen words or fewer.

The Running Dream by Wendelin Van Draanen
A fantastic look at disability, friendly, struggle, and strength. As a runner, I’m a fan.

Summerlost by Ally Condie
A sweet and sad and real middle grade about loss and family. Loved the setting.

Paperweight by Meg Haston
A sensitive, real portrayal of a girl battling an eating disorder. Recovery is complex here.

Friday Fifteen

Happy Friday, guys! Although to be honest, Friday both snuck up on me and didn’t get here soon enough, so I don’t really know how to feel about it. At least I’m hoping to catch up on life stuff and work and sleep this weekend so maybe by Monday I’ll be back to normal. In the meantime, here’s a look at what I’ve been reading in fifteen words or fewer:

As I Descended by Robin Talley
YA lesbian Macbeth is all I needed to hear. Talley’s writing’s awesome; story’s legit creepy.

The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black
A fun take on contemporary vampires–more Buffy than Twilight here, with some great moments.

PS–I’ve also been wanting to change up the Friday Fifteen format a little (again). While I love the book reviews, I think it would be nice to add some other stuff to this. I’ve done writing updates, but sometimes that doesn’t lend itself to fifteen words or fewer (or even fifteen words at all). Maybe you guys have thoughts?

And if you have specific ideas about what you’d want to see, share them in the comments!

The Road to Revision

Revision is a big part of the writing life, but it’s not the easiest part. Love Julie True Kingsley’s description of what revision feels like:

“Ever wonder what it feels like? Revision?

It’s kind of like getting in the car in Maine, driving to Kansas City, then turning around to pop into New York City to pick a friend during rush hour because you can’t go west without her.  You get to Pennsylvania and realize that you forgot your underwear.  So, you swing by the mall buy some (it’s not too far out of your way!).  Then, while driving through Kansas you have all kinds of time to think about things you should have brought with you (there is plenty of time to think in Kansas! So you get your mom to send all that stuff to you).  Then you realize that you picked up bed begs around Sioux City and you need to exterminate the infested car because really you’ve gone too far.

Soon you don’t care what you look like because you’ve been on the road for a couple of weeks. What’s hygiene anyways if you never see a soul you know.  Heck, who cares what socks you wear.”

I totally feel this. It can be hard enough to finish your first draft. Then you have to revise it…and revise it…and revise it. You tweak one part, then your critique group says you need to flesh out another. Revision can feel like a road trip where you don’t really know how far it takes to get to the shiny city of final draft.

Fortunately, Julie also reminds us that, even when revision feels like you’re stranded on the side of the road, the journey is pretty freaking awesome. No matter what part of the trip you’re on, and even though it may feel like a lonely trek, there are a lot of other writers out there traveling right along with you.

(image: -Snugg-)


Friday Fifteen

Welcome back, Friday Fifteen fans! Onto the fifteen-word reviews:

1) Measure for Measure by William Shakespeare
Previously classified as a comedy, now considered a problem play. Sex comedy gets unusually creepy.

2) Karen’s in Love (Baby-Sitters Little Sister #15) by Ann M. Martin
Do kids really marry each other during recess? Also, Karen?

3) The Subtle Knife by Philip Pullman
Second book in His Dark Materials series introduces Will and reality as we know it.

4) The Ugly Duckling: The Talking Mother Goose Fairy Tales by Worlds of Wonder
This came with the Talking Mother Goose toy. It was awesome.

5) Signing Naturally, Level 2 (Book & VHS Tape) by Ken Mikos, Cheri Smith, and Ella Mae Lentz
Used in second year ASL class. It came with a VHS. I feel ancient now.

Friday Fifteen

Gotta end the week with a few fifteen-word reviews. Onto the books!

1. Laura’s Luck by Marilyn Sachs
Great camp book for someone who didn’t go to camp. Read a zillion times.

2. Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston
Only remember the ending. Rabies and guns get my attention, apparently.

3. Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe
It could have used more smoke monsters. And maybe Ben Linus.

4. First Place (Sweet Valley Twins #8) by Francine Pascal
Horses are expensive, even in Sweet Valley.

5. New Moon by Stephenie Meyer
The most emo of the series. Stop whining about your absent boyfriend, Bella!