Friday, April 17, 2009

Have you ever wanted to write a book?

I sure have, but I think a degree in creative writing comes with that built in desire. I find, though, that rather than just sit and write a book, I spend a lot of time coming up with a pile of incoherent parts that could, if properly sifted through and cataloged, accidentally comprise a book.

The books of my creation often come to me in bits. A title here, some great one liner, or an encounter that I imagine would fit right in with...something else. Beyond that, I get sort of stuck.

It's the big questions that throw off my creative mojo: how does it end? Does it have enough punch? Should it end thoughtfully, or with a bang? How do these characters meet? Should I spill family secrets? What's my point with this? And how, oh how, do I move my character from the kitchen to the backyard?

So, for right now, I have a box of bits to sort through. I'm like the Little Mermaid: "I've got gadgets and gizmos a-plenty. I've got who's-its and what's-its galore." If I just add a few more thing-a-mabobs, maybe that will bring it all together!

Eventually I will get some thoughts down. I'm sure of it. But for now it's story lines. There's the one that involves the major league baseball player (convenient seeing how baseball season just started, right?), one about a lady and her cat (autobiographical?), a dark mystery, a collection of short stories, and on and on.

As book lovers, do you have the same desire? What's your story line?

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Easter weekend well wishes...

(I can't decide whether this pic is whimsical, nostalgic, and cute, or terrifying beyond all reason. Feel free to share your thoughts!)

Well, it's Easter weekend, and while the thought of enjoying a relaxing weekend seems so wonderfully tempting, I know the reality will be somewhere more like get in the car, get out of the car, buy eggs, color eggs, hide eggs, stuff baskets, cook, clean, keep clean, have alternate outfits on hand in case not clean, and make sure all those eggs are accounted for!

But I do have plans to play this amazingly fun game that is my new, all-time favorite! It's called BookWorm, but it's not the BookWorm you think it is. I know there is an online Scrabble-like game that goes by the same name, but this one is very different.

It's a board game and it's simplicity is genius: the players move around the board, (each space on the board represents a letter of the alphabet) if you land on a vowel or a question mark, you're up! The player to your right picks a card and reads the selection on it out loud. Every selection is a passage from a book! Books that represent literature from the 18th Century on. After the selection is read, the reader asks the player a series of questions to see how well they were paying attention. There are questions asking characters names, colors used to describe scenes, scents mentioned, or other descriptive details. And it. is. Awesome!

The game was a gift to my better half many moons ago. He has no idea where it came from. And I can't find it online! Can you believe it? Because of the spelling of words and the books used, I believe it's British, but just don't know. It's become my misson to find it because I think all my booklover friends would love it as much as I do.

Has anyone else heard of or played this game?

Monday, April 6, 2009

Memoir For Review

Don't Call Me A Crook!: A Scotman's Tale of World Travel, Whisky, and Crime
by Bob Moore

Afterword by James Kelman

Paperback: 256 pages
Publisher: Dissident Books
(May 1, 2009)

Bob Moore's lost memoir is set to be crowned a classic. It's a tribute to one man's triumph over the law, morals, and sobriety. As unapologetic as Charles Bukowski, with the novelistic flavor of Hunter S. Thompson's The Rum Diary, this book is reminiscent of dark pubs, raspy voices, and tall tales told over strong whisky.

Bob Moore, a Glaswegian, was a marine engineer, building superintendent, and moonshine runner. He traveled throughout the U.S., Australia, Egypt, South America, Japan, and China. He also conned women, fought with pirates on the Yangtze, and set a coffee shop ablaze.

Don't Call Me a Crook! is picaresque, perverse, and darkly funny. With its unforgettable characters and strange plot twists, it reads more like a novel than a memoir.

Originally published in 1935,
Don't Call Me a Crook! is a mysterious and overlooked treasure. No critics reviewed it. To date, only four holders of original editions have been identified. Only a handful of people seem to have ever known of the book.

Bob Moore
is a mystery… literately. Don’t Call Me’s original publisher has no records of him or his book in its files. No used-book dealers offer Don’t Call Me and only a handful of institutions hold it in their collections. Despite intent research, what became of Moore after the publication of his story is unknown.

James Kelman is author of the Booker Prize-winning novel How Late It Was, How Late.

Email me to request a review copy: onlinepublicist [AT] gmail [DOT] com. Reviewers will receive an Advanced Reader Copy (ARC) of the book. This title is available for shipping to US/Canada mailing addresses only.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Happy April, ya Fool!!

Happy Fool's Day, all!

If you're like me, you love the idea of the holiday, but are just never quite sure what to do with it. I like to believe that I will come up with some witty form of trickery and jokery that will have friends chuckling and slapping their knees in fond remembrance for ages to come.

The reality, however, is that I will sit back and marvel at what others do. No plastic wrapped cars for me. No snakes or Prince Albert's in cans. No cheesy, predictable lies. I will jealousy read of the keen planning, organization, and creativity of those more motivated than I.

If you're anything like me, and find joy in and happiness in letting others do all the work, then check out the Top 100 April Day Hoaxes of All Time. Seriously, no joke. ;-P