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Category Archives: Weekend Roundup

Sand Art and Awesome Independent Booksellers – Weekend Roundup

Sand is just sand, right?  Not so!  Magnify it, and it becomes this:

magnified sand grains from http://www.sandgrains.com

Check out more artwork at www.sandgrains.com.

There are rumors floating around that bookstores may be dying.  Remember WaldenBooks, or B. Dalton?  They were bought by Borders and Barnes & Nobles, respectively, both of which offered books at a lower cost – or at least it seemed that way.  Now Amazon has come along, offering books (and more) at an even lower cost, and doing its share to make e-books a Big Thing.  So, is this the end to brick and mortar bookstores? 

Personally, I think it might be the end to the big, cold, impersonal bookstore,  but the winners of this are the cool, personal, independent bookstores.  The key is being different, to be about a love of books and not money, and, of course, to not have five such stores on a city block. 

Denver has Tattered Cover Bookstore.  Charlotte had  Park Road Books.  And check out these 10 Unconventional Bookstores.

Have you been to a wonderful independent bookstore lately?  Please share!

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Posted by on July 24, 2011 in Weekend Roundup

 

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Unfinished Novels, Typewriter Art, Photographs in Photographs, and The Million Dollar Question – Weekend Roundup

I read a lot of blogs in Google Reader, and I’m horribly far behind right now on posting some things I’ve been wanting to post about.  Let’s see how many I can sneak in today, shall we?

Ah, that unfinished novel.  The one you’ve completely given up on, you’ve lost half of it to a bad hard drive and aren’t possible able to recreate it.  The one you wrote ten years ago and never got back to.  The one you’ve given up on finding a way out of.  Post it at myunfinishednovels.com.

Keira Rathbone makes art with a typewriter – visual art.  “One of Keira’s mediums is the use of vintage typewriters to create her art. Typing out letters, numbers and symbols in place of brush strokes and pixels results in beautiful enigmatic images.”  Very cool:

Keira Rathbone - Typewriter Art

Loving this site:  Dear Photograph.  Old pictures in new pictures are nifty:

dearphotograph.com

Rachelle Gardner posed an intriguing question over on her blog:  Would you rather receive a million dollars for a book that no one will ever read, or have one million people read your book but never make a dime?  I have to say, reading through only some of the comments, I’m in the minority.  Yes, I write not because of the money, but because I have to – if I didn’t write, I would go crazy.  But for exactly that reason, I would be perfectly okay with no one ever reading a specific book I write – because there will be another.  And I’ll have a million dollars.  I don’t know, that’s how I feel – what about you?

How do you keep track of  the books you’ve read (or want to read)?  I started using WeRead through Facebook, but I’ve also heard of GoodReads.  Is one better than the other?  Is it worth trying to bring everything over from one site to the other?  Thoughts, anyone?

 
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Posted by on July 17, 2011 in Random, Weekend Roundup

 

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How to write a book, Typewriter keyboards, Short stories, and Philosophy – Weekend Roundup June 5

If you write, and you haven’t heard of Scrivener, go look it up.  Right now.

I found out about Scrivener during NaNoWriMo last year.  It’s a Mac program, but they have been working on a release for Windows, and it’s been in beta for over 7 months now.  I’m anxiously awaiting the full release, which will hopefully be in July.  I admit, I haven’t fully explored Scrivener and all it can do, but I can say, even with my limited use of it, it has changed my writing life.  You can break up your book into moveable pieces, make notes, do outlines.  You can easily find a scene you want to look at, without having to scroll through pages and pages (and pages) as you would in Word.  I can’t wait to explore it more.

Someone on BoingBoing posted a link to a list of tips from writers, and wrote that the most valuable thing she took away from the list is Scrivener.  Yep, it’s that awesome.

What I took away from the list:

Writing on the Wall

Image by Indiana Public Media via Flickr

  • I would love a huge wall to write on.  Whiteboard, chalkboard, or maybe just a wall I paint over every so often.  A big place to write down ideas, storyboard, timeline events, etc.
  • I need to write every day.  I’ve known this for…ever, of course, but I really need to do it.  Even if it’s only five minutes, I must write every day.
  • I need to get my characters in trouble.  I know this, but I love them, so I don’t want to hurt them.  But pain is a key component of survival.  I need to remember that.
  • I need to find a way to deal with distractions.  I read that Jonathan Franzen has an old laptop stripped of all distractions, including the internet, and has pretty much nothing but that laptop, a desk, and a chair in a room.  I don’t know that I can do that, but it’s probably exactly what I need.
  • I really need to get into a writing group.
  • Maybe I’ll look into a residency program next summer…hmmmm.

I love sticky, noisy keyboard keys.  I know, I’m a weirdo, I don’t care.  I’ve wanted an old-fashioned typewriter for years, but I realize it’s not practical – you know, since it’s not in an editable format.  I wondered if there was a typewriter-like keyboard somewhere out there in the world, and discovered you can make your own!  It’s well beyond my technical expertise, but maybe I can get one of my technologically inclined friends to give it a go.  Or, maybe I can buy one online...for $800…

Yeah, I’ll add that to my Christmas list…

One Story Blog made a list of the best short stories.  I’m embarrassed to say I think I’ve only read one of those on the short list, and only a couple more from the long list.  But it got me thinking about some of my favorite short stories:

How’s this for random fun?  “Wikipedia trivia: if you take any article, click on the first link in the article text not in parentheses or italics, and then repeat, you will eventually end up at ‘Philosophy.’”  No, really, try it!

 

 
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Posted by on June 5, 2011 in Weekend Roundup

 

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Books, Maps, and Laughter – Weekend Roundup May 29

We talk about living and breathing something – art, football, shopping.  Books.  Breathing Books has some beautiful photos of books, among other things.

Books can transport you to a whole other world, and sometimes they can blow your mind.  Need proof

Great journeys, from your desk.  Follow Amelia Earhart’s flight path, tag along with Jack Kerouac, ride the Trans-Siberian Railroad.

Need a good laugh?  Check out the 20 best corpsing videos from The Telegraph.  I love #4!

 
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Posted by on May 29, 2011 in Weekend Roundup

 

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The Beginning

I have been blogging for years, and have kept a continuous personal blog for the last three and a half years.  Recently, I decided to start writing a not-so-anonymous blog, attaching my name to my thoughts and writings.  I hope to one day be a published author, and I’d like to have an existing web presence when that time comes.  So I started a blog over on Open Salon, because they seemed to have such a dynamic, intelligent community.  And they do, without a doubt.  But I decided to leave that community, for a variety of reasons, and start a blog here.

I still plan on keeping my anonymous blog – it is such a part of me, I couldn’t possibly stand to cut it off.  It is who I am, just as this blog will be who I am, it will just be a different side of me.  Not more or less real, not more or less truthful, not better or worse, just different.

I’ve decided that each of my posts will fall into one of the following categories:

  • Music Monday – songs running through my head, songs close to my heart, songs that make me think, remember, consider
  • Tuesday Times – Thoughts on this week’s Time Magazine
  • Wednesday Writings – Fiction, writing prompts, sparks of inspiration
  • Thursday Thoughts – Personal thoughts, thoughts on writing
  • Five Things Friday – Um…five things…about something…
  • Weekend Roundup – Interesting things I’ve found online recently

Yes, I’ve stolen some ideas from other people, but you know what they say – Imitation is the highest form of flattery.

Splitting time between two blogs, along with work, and writing, and a life, will be difficult, I know. I’m not promising a post in each category a week, but I am promising at least one of something a week.  My goal is 2-3 posts a week, with ideally a weekly entry on Wednesday.  We’ll see how it goes.

In addition, I’d love to get some guest posts on here.  If you would like to guest blog, please let me know!

 
 
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