This is my least favorite ‘big’ holiday if you’re talking classic activities. I can’t tolerate heat, and I live in Texas. Unless they’re part of another activity, fireworks are okay but generally not worth the trouble of going to see them.
And yet I love the Fourth of July, Independence Day, if you’re talking about what it represents. And my favorite way to celebrate?Movies. Air conditioning. Wallowing in the feel-good warm-and-fuzzy patriotic feels I get from watching my favorite movies for the day. History, Americana, and a rousing bit of patriotic rah-rah-BOOM! Fireworks of a different kind.
Oh. And of course, all the food that goes with it!
What about you? How do you celebrate your national holiday?
What I’m reading right now: Clockwork Souls, A Steampunk Anthology, edited by Phyllis Irene Radford & Brenda W. Clough.
And I have a short story in it!
I knew the collection would be wonderful because I’ve read the previous two. I am thrilled to be part of it because at this point in this world’s progression, we join the American Civil War, and not only is there a fight to free slaves, but also to free enslaved souls that have been used in the creation of automatons.
I’m very proud of my story, which was originally intended to be a bit playful, until my character revealed things to me I hadn’t known before, and there ya go. Some things can’t be playful, or at least, she wouldn’t allow it to be.
My story is, “A Need for Expanded Abilities of a Discreet Nature.”
What are these ‘discreet abilities?’ Oh dear, I really couldn’t say. [Fluttering fan, reaching for smelling salts, swooning.]
Right now the ebook is available at Book View Café for only $3.99, or at Amazon at the same price. You can download a mobi version for Kindle, or an epub version for all other devices and apps. It’s safe and easy, and if you decide to do that and don’t know how to get it onto your device, let me know and I will talk you through it, or put you with someone who can. [Which makes it sound hard. It’s not. But anything can be daunting if you’ve never done it before, and so many of us just his ‘buy’ and have it show up automagically on our machines so have never had to do this little maneuver before!]
Let me know if you buy the print.
I’ll send you an autographed book plate for it!
What did I just finish reading? What am I also reading right now? [Hey, there are no rules any more and if two of my Ws in WWW are ‘reading right now,’ who cares?
Sometimes I choose an audiobook simply because of the voice in my ear. Well, I wouldn’t download just anything, but if it’s already something on my radar…
That is true of Half Bad. Yes, it was kind of on my radar already, mainly because I’d seen the cover a lot. But since I prefer historical settings, I hadn’t paid it a lot of mind. But then–then I clicked on the audible sample and… this voice. This accent. It just pulled me in. These aren’t the plummy tones of a Hugh Grant or Colin Firth. This is more regional, but I am not sure which region. I’m guessing industrial midlands or north? I honestly have no clue.
UPDATE: And I have been told reliably that it is Yorkshire, perhaps Hull with shadings of Sheffield! Yay!
It has been compared to Hunger Games, and yes, I see that. Dark YA, life and death.
But there is personality and character here, like a real guy is telling me his story, and I no longer care that it isn’t historical. It’s this guy, this character, and I must hear more.
And yes, I’m listening now, and it is set in modern day England, I think [Wales is a two hour train ride away] yet with white witches and black witches and a young guy who will probably be put to death when he’s seventeen, or so it seems right now. The story, the world, the characters–and of course the voice [both the voice Sally Green gave Nathan, and the voice of the reader, Carl Prekopp who I see is from Sheffield so maybe I’m write about the accent or maybe he’s using some other accent] has sucked me in. What a wonderful reading/listening experience.
In digging around, I found out that, “On March 3, 2014, it set the Guinness World Record as the ‘Most Translated Book by a Debut Author, Pre-publication’, having sold in 45 languages prior to its UK publication by Penguin books.”
Pretty darned amazing.
First in a trilogy. A trilogy that is already written and available.
And what will I read next?
Last week I said I’d read Changing the Guard by James Farner next.
I didn’t intend to. I downloaded it, wrote about it, and then forgot about it. Ooo[s.
What will I choose this week, and then not read?
Inkheart has been on my list forever. I hope this time I really do read it.
The cover is delicious. The idea even moreso:
One cruel night, Meggie’s father reads aloud from a book called INKHEART— and an evil ruler escapes the boundaries of fiction and lands in their living room. Suddenly, Meggie is smack in the middle of the kind of adventure she has only read about in books. Meggie must learn to harness the magic that has conjured this nightmare. For only she can change the course of the story that has changed her life forever. This is INKHEART–a timeless tale about books, about imagination, about life. Dare to read it aloud.
How have I not already read this???
Oh, hi. It’s all about me, because, well, that’s me. But now, how about you?
What are you reading right now?
What would you read if you had time to read?
The host site for WWW Wednesdays disappeared, so I let the meme go. But today I decided I wanted to share what I’ve been reading.
What I’m reading right now: After the War is Over, by Jennifer Robson. I’m actually listening to it as an audiobook. Post World War I with elements of women’s rights and class in a Liverpool setting. It appears to be heading for a love triangle and at this point I’m pretty sure who I think she’ll end up with.
Will I be right?
Only time will tell. But the characters are well-drawn, even the secondary ones, which helps make a rich world to sink into. Have you read it? What did you think?
What did I just finish reading? A short story anthology by my publisher, Story Spring Publishing. This is their second short story anthology and I make it a point to read all of them for two reasons. One, they are good. Two, I am putting out a short story anthology later this year with SSP and I love seeing the beautiful job they do with their publishing crew.
Immanence is the second of their anthologies edited by JL Aldis that I have read, and I will go ahead and say it. The first one was good. This one is terrific.
What happens when humanity and deity meet?
So many fabulous stories and writers, so many fabulous deities and locations, and it’s hard to isolate any single story. Certainly you should go read the first story which is free when you read the sample on Amazon or elsewhere. Antioch Grey’s British wit is saber-edged, and I finished it ready to dive in and read more. If you like short stories with supernatural elements, this one is one you really need to check out.
And what will I read next? Changing the Guard by James Farner is free today and I picked it up without looking closely.
But it is British, a mystery/thriller, and in a historical setting.
Three of my favorite things. The reviews are VERY mixed on it, but again, free, so why not give it a shot? Birmingham, England–another industrial setting. Early Victorian times. If I like it, I’ll try to remember to let you know.
And again, what have you been reading.
What are you reading right now?
What would you read if you had time to read?
So I’m standing in line at the supermarket and the young probably teenaged checker stares at me, her mouth open, when it’s my turn.
“Wow, I’ve never seen someone your age with earbuds before!”
I guess I should have been insulted, but I wasn’t. I was tickled. Which means, I should have kept my mouth shut.
“My grandmother,” she said [and again, I should have raised an eyebrow, but didn’t], “doesn’t know anything about computers, or anything at all. ANYTHING.”
Instead of the amazed respect she was already giving me, she suddenly said, “Holy shit, somebody needs to buy you a new computer!”
I laughed, thinking she’d missed my point. “I’ve had plenty of new ones. I have a MacBook Air now. But the original Macintosh is a collectors’ item. And I still have it.”
It was too late. Whatever cred I had when I kept my mouth shut was up in smoke.
Because I made the geezer mistake of assuming she even knew what ‘original Macintosh’ meant.
Story of my life. Awesome cool on the surface…
Until I open my mouth.
This is the most amazing group, and I fell in love. I joined their chapter. I have been back since to speak at a monthly meeting. I want to go more often.
So that’s how I became a local-to-Shreveport author when the library called for participants!
Except it’s really not quite all of the story.
You see, I also wrote a romance novel set in Shreveport. Why? Because I was a struggling new writer and realized that all of my [at the time, unsold] books had been set in Texas so I needed to stretch myself. I chose Shreveport, a place I knew pretty well.
Or, as one of the soccer moms sitting near me that morning said, “Oh, you went twenty miles over the border and said, “Far enough!”
What’s your point?
Fact is, my grandparents lived in Shreveport for most of my childhood and until a few years after I got married. Shreveport was ‘home’ the way the best grandparents in the world always make you feel at home. They first lived in the city, but then bought a little house out in spittin’ distance of Cross Lake, with Ford Park across the street, and deer that came to the fence to eat cigarettes. [Don’t ask me how or why. I just know they did.]
Shreveport is the kind of heart-home that lives in my memory of everything that is unconditional love. This is my very personal feeling.
Shreveport will always own a piece of my heart.
After I spoke at the wonderful NOLA meeting [and gave them a sneak preview of the cover for The Dead Shall Live and got fabulous feedback from them on what kinds of adjustments we were going to make] the Resident Storm Chaser and I then took a leisurely drive down memory lane. We drove the street, found the house, and I wiped a few tears [and wanted to buy it and move in].
We drove around the lake, drove through Ford Park, and from there, looked at my grandparents’ house [and I wanted to buy it and move in].
We left there and drove north through some of the small towns where my grandparents had lived when I was very small [and I wanted to find a place to buy and move in].
I love Shreveport, and damn it, I’m local, whether they want me or not.
See ya’ there, Shreveport! Can’t wait!
This is an experiment in advertising. I am just testing to see how it works. I don’t mean to annoy you, so forgive me if I am.
This is meant to be an ad that shows up sometimes but not always. It’s a custom ad I created to see how it works. And it’s for books I hand-picked myself because I have loved them for various reasons, and think you might enjoy them, as well.
So… now to see if they show up. Or if they don’t!
I’ve gathered some friends and fellow authors to bring you this contest. No strings attached, no tricks, no unexpected consequences. Just sign up to win!
You’d think since I’m running this contest I’d get to have copies of all these books, right?
Only the winners get them. So now I am going to sit back and be jealous while y’all get a chance at a lot of very good reading. Good luck!!!