austinkleon:


How to tag your paper notebook
Awesome. (via)

Read All Over: August 2014

Here’s what I read this month

  • 17 & Gone by Nova Ren Suma: This sat on my TBR waaaaay too long. When I picked it up, I raced through it. I was totally with Lauren as she got sucked into each new missing person’s case she encountered. There is some great writing here, and Suma doesn’t hold her punches when writing about all the things it means to be a girl in a world where girls disappear every day. Suma both respects and understands her teenaged audience/characters, and the result is really raw, really powerful writing that weaves together reality and magic beautifully. I’m not usually a fan of twist endings, but here it felt inevitable, in large part to Suma’s deftly controlled storytelling. This’ll be one I recommend to adults who are uncertain about dipping into YA, and to advanced teen readers who think YA is “beneath” them (aka me from ages 15-17). 
  • The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury: I read this for a Coursera class on Sci-Fi and Fantasy (which I highly recommend, fellow lapsed academics and autodidacts!). I was a bit thrown by the reading experience, because a) I was expecting a novel, and this is really a collection of stories, and b) this is much more fantasy than it is sci-fi, despite the space setting. One thing that alway stops me from really being able to get into Bradbury is the way he writes women. I mean, I get it, it was a different time and blah blah blah, but life is too short to keep reading stories set in a future where women are still only allowed to be frustrating housewives or punchlines because they’re ugly. Bradbury ends up doing what the earthmen do on Mars in these stories; he replicates the same tired tropes of his own place and time in a new setting. And life is just too short, man. No matter how beautifully turned the phrases are. 
  • Just One Year by Gayle Forman: I have to admit: I liked Willem’s story a lot more than Allyson’s. There was more momentum to get caught up in as he travelled the world, looking for Allyson/running from his problems. It just felt like there was more at stake for him than there was for Allyson in Just One Day. How much I enjoy the series as a whole is really going to depend on who’s POV emerges as the strongest in Just One Night, the final novella. 
  • Black Lake by Johanna Lane: I picked this up after Amanda Nelson wrote about it on Book Riot. I’d been reading (and abandoning) a lot of plot-heavy work recently, and this novel was the perfect antidote to that. It begins with the end and then backtracks, using multiple POVs to explore a few difficult months for an Irish family as they give up control of their Downton-style estate house. (Yeah, I know, my North America is showing). It was nice to just luxuriate in language and atmosphere a little while, instead of always trying to guess what was going to happen next. A great read to bring me into Fall. 

I’m still working my way through a couple of other books, like The Boss, Pointe, and All My Puny Sorrows. I’m starting the third (!) draft of my novel soon, so I’ll probably be reading to remedy my weaknesses in the Fall. 

What about you? What’s the best thing you read last month?

"If we can’t write diversity into sci-fi, then what’s the point? You don’t create new worlds to give them all the same limits of the old ones."

Jane Espenson (from interview with Advocate.com)\

I dunno how many which ways this needs to be said

(via aragingquiet)

(Source: fluffymoalabear, via fangirlingthebook)

"Mrs. Connolly was wrong: there had to be unsaid things between husbands and wives, and he had learnt that, though these were the things that saved you, they separated you too."

from Black Lake by Johanna Lane

This book was lovely and devastating, a real slow burn.

Summer can be over. I’m ready for more atmospheric books about damp places and chilly people, please. 

slaughterhouse90210:

“But she became Gabby’s friend in that way that can happen, because the girl with the cool boots always finds the girl with the occasional slash of pink in her hair. The two of them like a pair of exotic birds dipping over the school’s water fountains—you knew they would find each other.”
—Megan Abbott, The Fever
 

slaughterhouse90210:

“But she became Gabby’s friend in that way that can happen, because the girl with the cool boots always finds the girl with the occasional slash of pink in her hair. The two of them like a pair of exotic birds dipping over the school’s water fountains—you knew they would find each other.”

—Megan Abbott, The Fever

 

(via phirephoenix)

"What I’m sure of is that it’s dangerous to tell women that the goal of a relationship, the only way for a relationship to be “real” is to get married. And I know that telling a girl that sexuality is only about intercourse is dangerous. I know that letting sex be a stand in for validating a teen relationship is dangerous. I know that I don’t want to see relationships, especially for teen girls, take only one shape, over and over, because reinforcing an idea with such a specific prescription is hard on all of us. And we have enough stories we tell about teen girls and the boxes they’re allowed to sit in. We don’t need any more."

— Corey Ann Haydu talks about the relationships narratives — the good and the bad — presented in YA fiction for girls.  (via catagator)

(via yahighway)

leviathans-in-the-tardis:

you don’t realise how much tumblr has changed your view on things until you spend time with friends who don’t have tumblr and they say something and you’re just like

oh

(via fangirlingthebook)

sweet spot

I’m getting really close to the end of this second draft. I threw out the original ending (good riddance) and only have the last few chapters to write from scratch. They’re all outlined and ready for me.  If whatever is happening with my eye right now doesn’t get worse, I should be able to finish by the end of the week. For the first time with this project, I’m not even looking forward to the “put it in a drawer and forget about it” stage. I am not distracted by any new shiny ideas. I just want to go back to page one and start making the changes that have come to mind over the last month and a half of (re)writing. 

My book might not actually suck, you guys. 

"Things are far easier for the private eye nowadays. We’ve got access to a handy little thing noir detectives never had back in the day: Facebook."

Dani Noir by Nova Ren Suma

Something I need to keep in mind as I finish off a current draft of a YA mystery.

 (and definitely a question to add to the list for my beta readers: Could any of the investigation have been replaced with an online activity?) 

"I think hell is something you carry around with you. Not somewhere you go."

— Neil Gaiman, The Sandman  (via feellng)

(Source: feellng, via pugtronus)

themouseabides:

Knowledge is knowing that Frankenstein is not the monster.

Wisdom is knowing that Frankenstein is the monster.

(via afternoonsnoozebutton)

pasttensevancouver:

Pigeon Park/Merchant’s Bank, Sunday 15 May 1960
The parklet on the northwest corner of Hastings and Carrall streets was created in the 1930s when the CPR tracks between Burrard Inlet and False Creek were removed. It is officially called Pioneer Place but became known as Pigeon Park around the time this photo was taken because the grass enclosure became such a popular hangout for pigeons and the pensioners who came out to feed them and socialize.
The building is the Merchant’s Bank building, built in 1912 and originally planned to be four to seven stories higher, but capped at three stories because of the economic downturn that year and because the financial centre of the city was shifting to the west of this area by then. 
The Merchant’s Bank is owned by PHS Community Services Society, though I’ve heard a rumour that the province took ownership following the PHS scandal earlier this year. PHS had been planning to renovate the building and make it some sort of media arts centre. Before that, it was home to Co-op Radio.
This morning, big chunks of concrete fell off the building, apparently the result of a leaky roof (a similar problem ultimately doomed the old Pantages Theatre). 
Source: Photo by Walter E Frost, City of Vancouver Archives #447-342

pasttensevancouver:

Pigeon Park/Merchant’s Bank, Sunday 15 May 1960

The parklet on the northwest corner of Hastings and Carrall streets was created in the 1930s when the CPR tracks between Burrard Inlet and False Creek were removed. It is officially called Pioneer Place but became known as Pigeon Park around the time this photo was taken because the grass enclosure became such a popular hangout for pigeons and the pensioners who came out to feed them and socialize.

The building is the Merchant’s Bank building, built in 1912 and originally planned to be four to seven stories higher, but capped at three stories because of the economic downturn that year and because the financial centre of the city was shifting to the west of this area by then. 

The Merchant’s Bank is owned by PHS Community Services Society, though I’ve heard a rumour that the province took ownership following the PHS scandal earlier this year. PHS had been planning to renovate the building and make it some sort of media arts centre. Before that, it was home to Co-op Radio.

This morning, big chunks of concrete fell off the building, apparently the result of a leaky roof (a similar problem ultimately doomed the old Pantages Theatre). 

Source: Photo by Walter E Frost, City of Vancouver Archives #447-342

(Source: searcharchives.vancouver.ca)

velocipedestrienne:

Short Stories You Need to Read in Your Twenties // BuzzFeed Books