I just shot off four emails to agents and editors who had requested various parts of my recent manuscript. Now my brain feels like churned oatmeal. Who knew clicking send could be so mentally draining.
Throughout 2011, an anonymous artist created unique sculptures from books and deposited them throughout Edinburgh. Each came with a tag addressed to a Twitter alias. The whole thing was a mystery. The Edinburgh Evening News claimed it had identified the mysterious artist, but a poll revealed that the public wanted the artist to remain anonymous.
The first sculpture delivered was named “The Poetree” after Librarian Julie Johnston discovered it in the Scottish Poetry Library. At the base is a broken egg with words from Edwin Morgan’s poem, “A Trace of Wings.”
This sculpture is crafted from a copy of Ian Rankin’s Exit Music. The tag read: “For @natlibscot – A gift in support of libraries, books, words, ideas….. (& against their exit).”
This sculpture includes a a tag that reads: “By leaves we live.” The cup on the top has a swirl of words that reads: “Nothing beats a nice cup of tea (or coffee) and a really good BOOK”. Finally, the tray near the cupcake reads: “Except maybe a cake as well”.
The artist was able to craft sculptures with amazing detail like these feathers. This is part of a hat shaped like a bird’s wing.
While attending a young adult workshop at the SDSU Writer’s Conference, I gleaned an interesting tidbit. Someone in the audience brought up the idea of a protagonist in his early twenties at college. Our presenter nixed it. College bound folk are inundated with textbooks and studies. Often, they don’t have time to read.
That was the case for me. College killed my reading instincts. Before that, I read like a fiend. Afterward, I hardly picked up a book. Magazines drew me in, mostly because of the brevity of the articles. I remember distinctly my first serious novel that I read form cover to cover: The Alientist.
I continued to write, yet my reading suffered. Finally audiobooks came to my rescue. I read, or listened, while commuting. This worked well, but I yearned for that actual visual experience. (Try writing down a clever quote from a spoken text. Not as easy as it seems.)
Then my wife purchased an iPad for my last birthday. I checked out the ebook options. There were limitless. Trouble was, the iPad as so heavy. (I have and iPad 1, but even the iPad 2 is weighty.) Meanwhile, my reading had picked up. I am addicted to several young adult series. My latest favorite is Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld.
Much like other YA books, this one is a tome. Reading it makes my arms hurt. I tend to read in bed with the book held above me. So my mind drifted back to ereaders. I checked the whole spectrum. I didn’t need all the fancy web-browsing and apps. (I have an iPad, after all). What I wanted was a basic ereader that was very light. Enter the Nook.
I adore this product. The eink is amazing. It reads just like my paper book. The buttons make page turning easy and my arms never grow tired. Finally, it’s created a renaissance in reading for me. Just as the iPod revitalized my love of music, so has the Nook spurned me to be a more voracious reader.
Long live the ereader.
Firstly, about me. I’m a foodie. At least I try to be. When I eat out with my wife, I sample new foods. A few months back, with a gift certificate to Olive Garden, I tried mussels for the first time. I liked it. So for my Valentine’s day feast, I had mussels and fries (a north French staple). Delish.
I will also go umami over sweet every time. We opted for the cheese plate for dessert. Not disappointed. Though there was a slice of fig and a hunk of honey comb to sweeten things up.
Finally, I’d like to point out how everyone was seated. This was a Saturday night at prime dining time. My wife and I were seated in the couples section. I scanned left and right. Every guy sat with a view out the window and the rain washed streets. Every girl faced inward, with a view of her man. Me? The same. Is is an unconscious decision? Has this happened to you?
Tired of that outrageous tab at Ralphs? I mean, $3.50 for a gallon of milk? Seriously. Time to cut your loses. Send your little bundle of joy to Camp Hunger Games. Let that grocery bill of yours fight for survival. Think about it, it’s a win-win situation. If your child vanquishes the other children, clawing and scraping her way to the top, then your family is heaped with glory and honor for years to come. (Not to mention the free grocery trips). And if not…? Them’s the breaks. At least you can set one less place at the table.