Monday, January 30, 2012

In Which I List My Top 4 Fav Books

So the other day on Adam Heine's blog he mentioned his current top 5 books. Which were pretty awesome, I have to say.

I also keep a list of my top books, though for me, I can really only keep a top 4, because after that things devolve pretty quickly into chaos (especially with Harry Potter 3 and 5 both in the running).

But my top 4? Yeah, they're pretty static and have been for years.

I base this list more or less on a few things. How many times I've reread the books (because, yes, I am a person who rereads my favorite books), how many times I plan to/want to reread them again in the near future, and a vague notion of how they make me feel when I'm done reading them or while I'm reading them (short answer, extremely happy)

So, for your viewing pleasure and in no particular order, here is Sarah Ahiers's list of her favorite 4 books OF ALL TIME:

Stephen King's THE STAND

From Goodreads:

This is the way the world ends: with a nanosecond of computer error in a Defense Department laboratory and a million casual contacts that form the links in a chain letter of death.

And here is the bleak new world of the day after: a world stripped of its institutions and emptied of 99 percent of its people. A world in which a handful of panicky survivors choose sides -- or are chosen. A world in which good rides on the frail shoulders of the 108-year-old Mother Abigail -- and the worst nightmares of evil are embodied in a man with a lethal smile and unspeakable powers: Randall Flagg, the dark man.

For starters, I clearly love the apocalypse, and a plague pocy is in my top 3 pocy's of choice (zombpoc naturally being number one, followed by the inexplicable loss of technology poc at number 2)

Not only do I love this book, I also love the made for TV movie as well, which I own on DVD. I love me some Mr. King, and to me, this is his best work. I will read about Stu and Larry and Nick and Tom (M O O N, that spells Moon!) any day of the week.


From Goodreads:

A natural disaster leaves the young girl wandering alone in an unfamiliar and dangerous land until she is found by a woman of the Clan, people very different from her own kind. To them, blond, blue-eyed Ayla looks peculiar and ugly--she is one of the Others, those who have moved into their ancient homeland; but Iza cannot leave the girl to die and takes her with them. Iza and Creb, the old Mog-ur, grow to love her, and as Ayla learns the ways of the Clan and Iza’s way of healing, most come to accept her. But the brutal and proud youth who is destined to become their next leader sees her differences as a threat to his authority. He develops a deep and abiding hatred for the strange girl of the Others who lives in their midst, and is determined to get his revenge

I don't know if you know this about me, but i really love ancient history. So a fiction book with Neanderthals? Yeah. I'm there.

I've read this book so many times. I've read all of the sequels (except for the most recent one, yet) multiple times as well, but this is the best one, hands down.

I love to read about Ayla learning how to use the sling in secret, learning about herbs and plants and winning over her entire family, even though she's so completely different than the rest of them. Even the villains in this are not without compassion, and it's hard to hate them when they're just people too, though people very different from Ayla, and therefore us.

And every time i get to the end, I leave heartbroken, wishing things could be different and I want to open to page one and begin reading it all over again.

Man. I wish I was reading this book Right Now.

Marion Zimmer Bradley's THE MISTS OF AVALON

From Wikipedia:

The book follows the trajectory of Morgaine a priestess fighting to save her matriarchal celtic culture in a country where patriarchal Christianity threatens to destroy the pagan way of life. The epic is focused on the lives of Gwenhwyfar, Viviane, Morgause, Igraine and other women who are often marginalized in Arthurian retellings. King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table are supporting rather than main characters.
The Mists of Avalon is in stark contrast to other retellings of the Arthurian tales, which consistently paint Morgaine as a distant, one-dimensional evil witch or sorceress, with no real explanation given (or required) for her antipathy. In this case Morgaine is cast as a strong woman who has unique gifts and responsibilities at a time of enormous political and spiritual upheaval as she is called upon to defend her indigenous matriarchal heritage against impossible odds

Another thing you may not know about me is that I LOVE Arthurian mythology. I took a crap load of classes on it in college (and in the most awesome one of all, we got to read this book as part of the syllabus. BONUS!)

I love this retelling. Because, again, there are no villains, just people. And though some of the people, even the heroes, make terrible and heartbreaking decisions, you can't fault them for it.

Another one where we own the made for TV miniseries, though it really barely touches the awesomeness of the book (mostly, it just has a nicely cast group of attractive men playing Arthur, Lancelot and the knights. MMMM)


From Goodreads:

It's the future, and most jobs are done by machines. Now that school is over, Lisse and her friends are consigned to a bleak neighborhood for the permanently unemployed. Then they receive an invitation to the Game, which transports them to a paradise. Is it a dream or a computer simulation? Each time they play the Game, the new world seems more and more real...

Remember when you were in school and they used to have book fairs? Which was more or less bringing a bookstore to your school library so you could buy books? I bought this book at a middle school book fair and have read it so many times I've literally worn out two copies and am now on a third. I'd classify this as MG sci-fi dystopian. It's not straight up dystopian because it has an awesome and uplifting ending.
I totally need to read this again ASAP.

So there we have it! My top 4 books.

How about you?

Tell me your favorite books and why - maybe I'll add some of them to my TBR list.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Friday Fun!

I'm back! Yvie here, the sassy frenchie with a heart of gold! And a mouth full of teeth. If you pet me, will you get the gold heart? Or the sharp teeth?

No one knows, and that's half the fun of moi!

teefers like daggers!

Can you believe the first month of 2012 is almost over? I can't. Mostly because I'm a dog and really have no sense of time.

Because time is a relative thing, ape-friends, and it doesn't actually exist. True Story.

Onto the fun!

funny pictures - Evry bunny was  Kung Fu fighting

funny pictures - FEAR IT

Funny Pictures - Cat Gifs

funny pictures - worries...

Funny Pictures - Cute Kittens

Thursday, January 26, 2012

In Which We Host A Blogfest

Yay! Surprise Thursday post!
Vic Caswell, Emily White and Moi are hosting a Blogfest!

What blogfest you ask? A super fun one!

The Teenage Heartthrob Blogfest!

Remember when you were teen (yes, it may have been a few or more years ago) and you saw that first person that made you think "hmmm, I think I like them in a way that's more than just thinking they're "cool""?

This blogfest is dedicated to those people.

We want a list of the 7 people that you crushed on as a teen. They could've been teens at the time, or adults, it doesn't matter. The only thing that matters is that teenage you wished you could've been a bit closer to that person.

The deets:

Monday, March 5th we want to see your heartthrobbing list! Please sign up using Mr. Linky below.

I'm already planning my list. How about you? Who's going to be on your list?


Wednesday, January 25, 2012

In Which I Write A Letter To Google Alerts

Dear Google Alerts,

Remember when, over a year ago, I set up an alert for my name? So that way if someone mentioned me on their blog, I wouldn't miss it and would be able to thank them?
Remember how you worked for, like, 2 weeks the you stopped?


Because I do. And though I felt scorned and irritated at you (and at me, for my inability to get such a simple technology to work correctly) I let it go. Because mostly I'm laid back and so I could just shrug my shoulders and move on with my life.

But you know what? Moving on with my life becomes difficult when, after a year of not getting a single damn alert even though I had proof my name had been mentioned on friend's blogs, you suddenly start working again.

Kind of.

Not really.

So I'm writing you this letter to let you know, dear Google Alerts, that I don't EFFING NEED YOU to alert me every time I post a new blog post.

This may be shocking to you, since you are only a digital program, and not even a good one at that, but you don't need to tell me when I update my blog. I was there when it happened. I KNOW.

Please go back to ignoring my alert. OR, if you're feeling magnanimous, start working for real. But right now, this isn't working for me.




Monday, January 23, 2012

In Which I Promote A Blogfest

In the month of February, there's an awesome blogfest hosted by:

1) Live to write...Edit when necessary.
2) Cassie Mae over at Reading, Writing, and Lovin' it.

Whats the dealio you ask? Characters! And a chance for AWESOME PRIZES! (I'm not even kidding about the prizes)

Here are the details:

Monday, February 6th--Characters on the couch:
Have one of your characters answer the following questions (to make this work to your benefit, choose a character who is the hardest for you to write :) Max 250 words (Not including the questions—only the answers).
  1. What is your biggest vulnerability? Do others know this or is it a secret?
  2. What do people believe about you that is false?
  3. What would your best friend say is your fatal flaw? Why?
  4. What would the same friend say is your one redeeming quality? Why?
  5. What do you want most? What will you do to get it?

Wednesday, February 8th--Dialogue Introduction:

Have two characters introduce each other using only dialogue—no backstory, no internalization, just dialogue between the two. Max 250 words.

Friday, February 10th -- Emotion Flash Fiction:

Emotion is the engine of a story. Pick an emotion and in a flash fiction piece of 250 words MAKE us feel it! We want to connect with your character. This will be a challenge in 250 words.

Prizes include two books, two query critiques, and two FULL MANUSCRIPT critiques. Seriously.
So, I've signed up. What about you?

Friday, January 20, 2012

Friday Fun

Yvie's back, ape-friends, becasue we all need some fun on our Fridays to launch us into the weekend. That and we just don't really care about doing our usual amount of work on Fridays, amiright?

It's been super cold here, finally. But it stinks when it's really really cold, but we have no snow. What is the point of winter without snow, I ask? Nothing, that's what.

Onto the fun!

funny pictures - Happy Chair is Happy: Granny Smith Apple is Aptly Named

funny pictures - Invisible

Funny Pictures - McDonald's Cheezburger


Wednesday, January 18, 2012

In Which I Read Books

Well, I finished my goal of reading 55 books in 2011. For awhile there I thought for sure I wouldn’t make it, but I read like 10 books in November which helped a lot. Natch.

I actually finished out the year with 58 books read. Which is pretty awesome. And I thought I’d share my top picks from the year.

In no particular order, here are my top 5 books of the year (I could’ve easily spread this to 10, but I wanted to keep this list succinct)


Have you read this book yet? No? Why not? Because it’s excellent. I’m pretty particular about the dystopian I like, but throw in a lot of action and badassery and I was hooked from page one. I was lucky enough to snag an arc of this and have passed it on to other members of the fam to read.


Steampunk, Victorian paranormal?  Yeah, sign me up. LOVE these books! It’s such a refreshing take on the same old Vampires and Werewolves paranormal we’re all used to. I mean, I love Sookie as much as the next person (though I’ve officially give up on Anita Blake) but these books made me fall in love with the idea all over again.

The Liar Society

I used to read mystery when I was in middle school. Then I moved onto horror, then SFF and the rest is history. If not for “knowing” L and L through the blogosphere, I don’t know that I would’ve picked this book up if I’d seen it in a bookstore. Just because it’s not my usual cup of tea. And that would’ve been a travesty. I LOVED this book. Could not put it down. Who knew YA mystery could entertain me so much? I cannot wait for the sequel(s)

A Companion to Wolves

Sometimes I read YA to the detriment of everything else. I forget that I love adult SFF. This book reminded me, hard, how much I love it. And I don’t know why. Lot’s of guy on guy action, giant wolves, Vikings, etc. Loved this book. I made Twin read it right away and she also loved it. Can’t wait to read the sequel (it’s in the mail, shipping from B and N as I write this)

Blood Red Road

I picked up this book at a Border’s closing sale. It was the last weekend and I though I’d pop in to see what they had for extra cheap. They had a whole stack of these books and though it sounded kinda meh, it was only a few dollars so I thought I’d give it a shot. Great decision. Completely different that the back cover made it seem and I loved it. Love the voice of the MC, loved the plot, loved everything about it. Will definitely be buying the sequel.

So, that’s the top 5. Many were close to making the list. What about you? Have you read any of these books? What did you think? What was your favorite book you read last year?

Friday, January 13, 2012

Friday Fun

Yvie's back, babies! Because it's Friday, natch, and I'm here to load you up with some good stuff. Good stuff.

Let's get this Friday STARTED!!

Funny Pictures - Kittehs Are Doin' it For Themselves

funny pictures - And this here is Slick, my shadow. He'll be watching you while I sleep.

funny pictures - Cheezus, son of Ceiling Cat, attempts walking on the wetter for the very first time.

Funny Pictures - Cat Gifs


Wednesday, January 11, 2012

In Which I Make New Goals

All right, time to get going with these 2012 goals! Time’s a wasting!

2012 Goals

  1. Query Glimpse of Another Shore
  2. Query Break Free
  3. Finish another novel
  4. Sell another short story
  5. Attend a writer’s conference
  6. Join a new crit group or find some more crit partners
  7. Go on a date
  8. Lose weight
  9. Read 60 books

      1.  I stopped after two months last year to make some changes on the MS. But because I was in 
           the middle of writing Break Free, and then had NaNo, the revision got pushed back more than
           expected. BUT I think it’ll be ready to give the agent waters another test starting in February.
           Maybe a bit earlier.

  1. Once I start querying Glimpse again, I’ll work on finishing this bad boy up. It needs line edits and beta readers, but I think it’s very strong. I’m hoping for a late spring/early summer query date, but we’ll see where we’re at with Glimpse. I don’t know if people query more than one novel at a time but I don’t know if I could handle the confusion and the double roller coaster.

  1. I’ll probably tackle All That Remains, even though I still have rough feelings about it. I mean, I’m like 50K in. It shouldn’t take much just to push that baby through to the end. I also plan on writing my Shiny New Idea in 2012 as well, but whether I’ll do that for NaNo or not, I’m not sure. Time will tell

  1. Again, like last year, I don’t have much control of this. The best I can do is submit some stories and see if I get any bites. I’ve got 3 in the wings that I plan to submit this year, hopefully. I’d also like to see if I can get into SFWA, though the horror markets that grant you membership are few and far between.

  1. I’ve gone to Fourth Street Fantasy the last two years, but that’s not necessarily a writing conference. This year, I’m going to hit one with actual agents and junk. I’m aiming for Wiscon, so let me know if you’re planning to hit it up to. I WANT TO MEET UP WITH YOU if you do.

  1. I’m part of my existing writing group with Hannah and Teebore, and I love it, but I’d also like to get to know other writers as well, especially locally, so I’m going to see what I can do. If I can’t get in one locally, through SCBWI, then I’ll probably be looking online for some more crit partners especially people who may be at the same stage as me (querying, etc) (hint hint, if you’re looking)

  1. Yep. That’s just what it sounds like. Even if it’s just a single date, that’s fine by me.

  1. Always a goal. We got new treadmills this year, which is awesome, but our poor elliptical died on us. We'll be tackling Couch to 5K in our hopes we can hit a Warrior Dash this year. Anyway, excercise is not really the problem, nor is eating healthy. It’s just portion control. Once more into the breach 
Warrior Dash, here we come!

  1. 55 Books was touch and go, but I made it. So I have to raise the bar. Will I be able to hit 60 books read? I have no idea. Guess we’ll find out this time next year.

And that’s it!  How about you? What are some of your goals for 2012?

Monday, January 9, 2012

In Which I Met Goals

Well here we are, 2012. Much easier to say than 2011. Man, the years go by fast, right?

You know what else happened with the passing of the year? My Blogoversary! That's right, I've been blogging for over 2 years. Yay! I blogged 148 times in 2011, which is not too shabby, if I say so myself. I have no clue what I’ve been talking about.

Also with the new year comes new resolutions!

I know some people are anti-resolutions. And I guess I understand why. But for me, that’s not an issue. My resolutions are actually goals I aim for. I like lists and goals. Goals are cool. If I don’t reach them, *shrug*, then I don’t reach them. It doesn’t upset me in the least. They’ll just be waiting for when I give it another shot.

Anyway, let's take a look at my resolutions from last year and see how I did:

2011 resolutions:

1. Query Glimpse of Another Shore (check. I only queried for 2 months before I paused, but it went much better than expected. No agent, yet, but that’s OK. I’ll keep working)

2. Finish another novel (check. Finished Break Free, which I utterly love. Like 1000x more than Glimpse.)

3. Get Hole-Ridden published (Super check!!! Sold that baby to Dark Moon Digest #6 (now available here)

4. Lose Weight (uncheck. THOUGH, I didn’t gain any weight. Which is a plus)

5. Read 55 books (check! It was close, but I pulled it out at the end)

So, not too shabby. Not at all. Wednesday I’ll list my 2012 goals, which are both the same and different. They’re at least more numerous.

Friday, January 6, 2012

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