With a few exceptions, I really don’t care about owning a signed book. Like if someone gave me a signed copy of John Grisham’s A Time To Kill, I’d probably think, “Oh, that’s nice,” and put it away.
Or if I see some random author at a book signing in Barnes & Noble, the fact that I can owned a signed copy of his book and shake his hand in no way makes me more eager to purchase his book.
In fact, with the lone exception of David Foster Wallace, I can’t think of any author from the last 30 years who would make me want to own a signed copy of one of their books.
I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve read The Great Gatsby. I think this last time, when I reviewed it for the blog, made my fifth read-through. But I honestly don’t know.
That’s saying something. Because I’m typically not a repeat book-reader or movie watcher. Once I’ve read a book or watched the movie, then I rarely will go through it again.
My wife can watch the same movie 10 times. And I just don’t get it because I’m thinking…you know what’s about to happen!
Parenting is hard work. I know that’s a cliche, but it’s a well-earned cliche.
Kids are pretty awesome, and they can even teach you a thing or two about reading, but they also have their moments. That’s why, if you want to be a parent, it’s important to make sure you are not a mental whack job.
Mental whack jobs who are parents usually produce kids who eventually become mental whack jobs themselves. This is not good.
Since fiction is often just a mirror of reality, there’s a lot to learn from literary parents, both good and whack jobbish.
Quite a bit, actually. Let’s take at some parenting tips I put together based on lessons I’ve learned from literary parents.
I hear this a lot: “I didn’t like [insert book] because it glorified [insert topic: extramarital sex, violence, drugs, etc].”
We all have different levels of comfort. That’s something we’ve talked about before. What happens, though, when we project our own discomfort about a certain topic onto the book we’re reading? So, when we read a novel that deals with a serious subject, we suddenly label said novel as “glorifying” that subject.
What does that even mean? And where’s the line? How does an author talk about a difficult topic, even in a graphic way, without being perceived as glorifying that subject?
I’m still not really sure what it means to “glorify” a topic, like violence. But, for what it’s worth, I would put movies more into the “glorifying” camp than literature. Some movies feel like they are violent just for the sake of being violent–and I guess that’s part of what people mean when they talk about this idea of glorifying. The rampant violence, in some cases, does nothing to advance the plot. It’s just kind of there–in order to get in the requisite number of decapitations and camera shots of splattering brains.
I don’t talk about sci-fi on this blog a lot. But, when I do, it’s usually negative.
You know, I just haven’t read a ton of science fiction in my day–or at least what might be considered “true science fiction.” And the sci-fi I have read…well, Neuromancer. And, well, I bashed Snow Crash in my review last week.
When I look back on Neuromancer, I honestly think I didn’t rate it low enough in my meaningless rankings–probably should be somewhere closer to the Mrs. Dalloway range. But there you go.
And Snow Crash had such potential. But it was like a marathon runner who’s leading the race after 5 miles, then tears his ACL.
All that said, I realize I have skewed views on science fiction. And the two books from the Time list (Neuromancer and Snow Crash) aren’t helping my biased viewpoint.
Censorship is a touchy issue.
We’ve talked about it before in terms of famous books that have been banned. But I don’t think we’ve ever really dived into it deeply.
Today, let’s give it a try. And, that said, let’s do our best not to get in a flame war in the comments!
I found the following quote the other day while doing some research for an article at work.
This comes from John F. Kennedy.
You become an awful, bitter person who watches Jersey Shore reruns all day.
Via: Passive Voice
Hooray for Valentines Day!
Today is a wonderful opportunity to gorge oneself on overpriced chocolate and questionable fettucine alfredo, while dining with the one you love.
Or, if you’re tired of hearing everyone yapping about love and such, then perhaps you’d like to relish in the dark, miserable side of romance.
Like these terrible couples from literature, for example. So if you hate Valentines Day, then today’s post is for you.
Here are some of the worst couples in literature–at least that I could think of.