Thursday, September 27, 2007

The Hobbit Poll

I am very excited about this poll. Hobbits all have the same characteristics, but every hobbit in this poll is different. Frodo is perhaps wiser than the others, a bit odd like Bilbo (who I think tends to be odd and a funny, feisty old gentlehobbit) and then there is Sam. Samwise, sweet and loyal, especially to Mr.Frodo. Pippin is foolish and curious. Merry is playful, but a little less inquisitive than Pippin. I remember once I took a Lord of the Rings test to see which character I would be and I was Merry. I think I tend to be more of a literate than Merry though. Enjoy the poll!

October 17

Who is Your Favorite Hobbit?

1. Frodo: 16%
2. Sam: 33 %
3. Merry: 16%
4. Pippin: 33%
5. Bilbo: 16%
6. All of the Above: 16%

Come on hobbit fans! You should have voted more for Frodo and Merry. Bilbo is excusable....but it wouldnt' hurt to vote for him more than once! Maybe I did that one. Hmm. If you have any more thoughts on this poll, leave a comment. It is closed for voting.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

The Time Quintet, Part 2

I have now finished the second book in the time quintet, A Wind in the Door. I think that I must have sounded very negative in my previous post on the time quintet. I enjoyed the wind in the door better than a wrinkle in time, in ways, because it seemed more mysterious, more cozy, and I absolutely loved Proginoskes. It was also a bit of an odd book, too....I tend to think that L'Engle was Christian, but did mention in her books that Charles Wallace was reading Darwin. She also makes a lot of reference to 'billions of years ago' and how humans must have evolved. Maybe it's typical of this sort of science fiction. It is so whimsical and funny; but it is still very serious stuff that these people are getting into. A Wind in the Door has a brilliant idea that nobody else has played with much; cherubims. L'Engle writes about cherubims, and how Charles Wallace and Meg find a cherubim in their garden.This made the book for me. Who has ever thought of writing about cherubims before? Proginoskes is a witching character, and slightly complex. Reading Proginoskes has helped me with some of my characters. I have been thinking more about the horse character, Ebony, lately, and I think he needs a bigger part in the book. Ebony is (or was) the second hardest character to write for me, but I have come in touch with him now. Dwalyn doesn't feel as hard to write anymore either; I have been using a simple technique. Many books on writing say to write letters to your character or from your character's point of view. I finally figured out why this never worked for me the other day: nobody was answering. I got my verbal partner on writing to write letters from her character's point of view to mine. It helps both of us. Oops, back to the book.
I included so many pics of the editions so you could get a feeling for it. The new Digest edition doesn't' capture Proginoskes at all. He isn't even in the cover art. All of the others include him though. The one with a man turning into a crow is the one without Proginoskes. I think that if you read A Wrinkle in Time, you should read A Wind in the Door. I continue to notice Evolution. Charles Darwin type ideas in her books, but she does lean towards Christianity. Read and enjoy.
Anna Elizabeth Hedges

Monday, September 24, 2007

The Time Quintet, Part 1

Yesterday I started and finished this book, A Wrinkle in Time. I have heard that a Christan wrote it, I have also heard people say that it could not possibly be Christan. I think it was, at least to an extent. I'm not going to get into the world-view stuff. I'll just say what I think of the book.

1) The characters are well-written, even though I thought Meg was a bit typical. I didn't like how she was impatient all the time and how she blamed her father for everything; it seems like every body writes characters like that. Charles Wallace was charming, and Calvin was great. Mr. and Mrs. Murry were good too. I was a little disappointed in Mrs. Which, who I expected greater things from, and I thought that Mrs. Who should be able to make her own sentences. :) Personal opinion. Mrs. Whatsit was fine, though I admit I liked her a little better as the centaur.
2) The plot was fine. I knew everything would be alright in the end, but I wanted to know how. The romantic thread in it was great. Calvin and Meg are perfect for each other.
3) It was very creative, and it followed science to a certain point. Everything had at least a sort of information. I enjoyed the visits to the other planets, and I actually found the dog, Fortinbras, quite enchanting, though I think he could have played a much bigger part.
4) I think she could have made it longer. The whole story takes place in 12 chapters. That isn't very long. Like I said, I finished it yesterday, and started it yesterday. So I think it could have been a bit longer, as the visits to the planets only took one chapter, with the exception of Camazotz.

Overall, though, it was a good book. Although the suspense in it could have been much better, despite the whimsical quality to the story, I could tell when these people were in trouble and desperate. The book is fun and a must-read for kiddos. Adults will find it amusing and fun, I think, and I enjoyed reading it. It had a coziness about it, like it would be good nighttime reading with a cup of cocoa, or a good rainy-day read.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Influence and Reading

You see next to these words books from series that are considered the greatest fantasy epics of our time. I have just been reading my brother's blog and some of his entries on Movies/Television and Reading Habits. It got me thinking about all the books I read, and about something I was thinking about several weeks ago.
Writers and Readers are closely related. I have to read to be able to write. In fact, it is because I read that I write. I remember that I didn't want to learn how to read when I was little, and I remember protesting when Mom made me sit on the couch with her for ten minutes. I remember reading a small, very easy chapter book about bugs. I remember reading Frog and Toad, and I remember reading Pony Pals. Pony Pals was probably what inspired me to write. This woman wrote about girlfriends who all had ponies, and who went on all sorts of adventures together. I wanted to do that. I would make up stories like this in my head, and then I would actually plan on doing it when I grew up. When I was young, I hated fantasy. I didn't like it, because I knew there was no way that my horse was going to wake up one day and talk to me. I wanted to write things that could happen. Thinking back I realize that what kids think are real are really fantasies that they believe in. I wanted to grow up and adopt wild animals, have as many horses as I could think of, as many dogs as I could think of, and every pet imaginable. I wanted them to all have sweaters and collars that matched, and I wanted all of them to be able to rescue me if I was ever in trouble, and for the dogs to beat all the sled dogs in Alaska in a sled race. These where things that could happen, but were very, very unlikely to happen. I remember thinking that one of the stories would be about somebody that kept stealing gingerbread, my favorite cookie at the time. But I was soon introduced to Star Wars. I grew up watching cowboy and Indian wars. My first movie was Hondo. :) Star Wars was fun and interesting when I got older. I thought it boring (except for Yoda, who looked like a green hairless chihuahua with a smushed-in face to me) and it didn't make any sense. I did eventually learn to like it. I remember that it took me awhile to like Dick Van Dyke too, but my first favorite episode was Never Name a Duck, because of the ducks in it.
But then, Lord of the Rings and The Chronicles of Narnia came along. Wow. I have fond memories of the day that I got my boxed set of Narnia from Brian for my 10th birthday. I remember picking up the Magician's Nephew, and how pretty I thought it was. (Yes pretty. The Magician's Nephew is one of my favorite Narnia books.) The cover depicted the Wood Between the Worlds and the two 'magic' rings. But I still didn't want to write fantasy. Reading it was fine, but writing it? No way possible. But then I was introduced to Lord of the Rings. The first time I saw the Fellowship, I closed my eyes when the Orks entered the screen. I watch the entire series without blinking now. Orks aren't all that scary to me, just very ugly and.....evil I suppose. I grew to love Lord of the Rings. It became my favorite movie (and still is!) and I remember the excitement of going to see it every year. And so a year ago April I started my own fantasy story, though at the time the world I was creating was bright and sunny and their was no conflict. I was basing the whole thing on something similar to the Shire, minus hobbits and hobbit holes. My character was to be a shepherd, and she was going to find a beautiful black horse and they would go on lots of adventures together. I made several tries on starting it, and I remember the one I finally settled on as a hideous piece of work. I started to read more fantasy books. Maybe what did it was reading through the Fellowship and The Two Towers. I'm actually mad at myself that I never made it through the Hobbit or the Return of the King, but they are both on my list of books to read and reread. Anyway, about a year ago, I decided that my book just wasn't enough. My characters were weak and immature, all the men in it were grumpy with bad attitudes. :) I didn't do that on purpose, but the easiest characters to write are the weak ones and the ones with bad attitudes. My main character, then called Elizabeth Jacqueline, was a terrible person. She was good, yes, but though I wrote her with brown hair, I pictured her as a strawberry blond. Yuck. (No offense to strawberry blonds, I think they are very pretty, but this hair color does not fit my character at all.)
I stopped, and wrote about 10, maybe 15 new 1st chapter versions. I've only just recently (last month in fact) settled on one. I was also permitted to read Harry Potter earlier this year, and I read through the entire series as I could get my hands on them. Libraries are slow.
A few months ago I realized something.
My writing is easily influenced by what I read. I had been reading modern books, like Harry Potter and Inkheart and Eragon. But my writing (and myself) needed older books. I realized how easily influenced I had been and since I had finished Harry Potter, rekindled my deep interest in the Lord of the Rings, the kind of influence I want for my writing. Harry Potter is good, but LOTR is definitely better. I feel like my work is being influenced by better things now that I am aware of how easily Harry Potter can affect the way I think. The story line and the general flavor of the fantasy I mean. The cheerfulness surrounding Harry Potter affected the way I write a lot, which might not be a bad thing, but I don't want my work to smack of Harry Potter. I got lots of new books for my birthday, so I can try new ideas. My book is a lot like Lord of the Rings, though I created a more civilized world. I have fun watching Harry Potter, or reading it. But I have to say that I go on lots of adventures when I crack open Lord of the Rings, or slip in a DVD. Lewis and Tolkien were masters, and I don't' think any modern fantasy writer will top them. So I feel that my books need to be reminiscent of Lewis and Tolkien. I'm not being a copy cat, but I don't want Rowling to be my influence, though she may have already, in ways. My castle reminds me a little of Hogwarts, my owls obviously do, but I just like owls. One book will be devoted to the owl keeper and my main character, along with the Castle of the Owls. Rowling only had an owlery. Owls were side thing in her books, but I think that mine will be quite different. Reading is a necessity to writers, and I love both. I just need to read more of the right books, though actually, I think every book plants itself in my mind, and thus depending on the authors I read, my book might take on a voice similar to there's. It's funny how much you can figure out just by reading novels. :)
Anna Elizabeth Hedges

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Nickel Creek

Dear Readers,
Although my interest lie almost chiefly in the rhetoric and literate world, I find that music and literary objects are sometimes closely related. One of my favorite groups is Nickel Creek. They sing bluegrass/folk/country type stuff. They are completely original, though they sing songs that are not there own. They are refreshing to me; they bring coffee shop bluegrass and fantastic violin music reminiscent of a cheerful adventure story from Tolkien or Lewis. The song I am referring to is The House of Tom Bombadil, which is a well-loved chapter in The Fellowship of the Ring. Their first CD is just nearly better than their second. It has more instrumentals, including a medieval style inspired by Robin Hood. I could listen to Nickel Creek at nearly any time. They help me write, actually. I like to listen to music when I write. It makes writing easier, even less of a chore. (Writing, as a rule, is a joy for me, not a chore. But let's do face it. Sitting a the computer for a whole afternoon, ripping your hair out when you get stuck, and drinking hot chocolate can make you tired. Music helps. :))
Music does affect my mood, and Nickel Creek generally keeps me in a good mood that helps me write, or even just feel good, feel strong. Nickel Creek's first CD is great, and it reminds me of something almost child-like. The second is more grown-up (though not in a bad way) and has a totally different sound. But it too is playful and original. I haven't listened to their third CD, or any of Sean Watkins and Chris Thile's CD's that they recorded by themselves. I think Nickel Creek is a must for any body who cares at all for music__but especially good music.
Anna Elizabeth Hedges

New Poll

Hey, readers,

I just wanted to post a few thoughts on the new poll.
First of all, I think that Rowling's books will definately, without question, be read for years to come. Funke's books will probably be too; hers are nearly as good as Rowling's. Paolini is young, but fantastic for his age. I expect he will write classics, soon, even, but Eragon and Eldest may or may not be best loved books in 30 years. I don't know. His story is well-written and creative, but it is just a little dry. I will stay mutual on him though. I won't vote for him on my own poll, but I won't say that Eragon will never be a classic. I mostly agree with historygeek.
Anna Elizabeth Hedges

September 27

Whose Books are more likely to become Classics?

1. J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter: 50%
2.Christopher Paolini, Eragon, Eldest: 50%
3. Cornelia Funke: Inkheart, Inkspell: 0%
4. All of the Above: 0%

I wish that somebody would have voted for Cornelia Funke.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Plans for the Fall

Hullo, Readers.
Today I woke up early again to start school. I didn't get much done for writing or reading yesterday, as we went to eat with some friends from church. That's alright though, because I did come up with a new story idea. I'm considering taking it easy for the rest of September and doing a little bit of sketching and plotting for other books and then just reading. I've been on a writing strike, and when I do that then reading gets neglected. The story I'm considering doing would be about a character I would base on myself. She would be a spy for another planet (Dad laughed when I told him this, but I'm not a spy from another planet!) with some friends that were also spies for the same planet, and maybe she'll probably be sent to do a near-impossible errand. If she doesn't do it, she'll get eliminated. Something like that anyway. I am only basing her character and appearance on myself. Nothing that happens in the book would be related to my life at all, except maybe her friends. Maybe. I just thought of it last night, but it might be something worth playing with a little bit. I have several other ideas, all sketchy, and I haven't really got anything more that the very basic theme for those. I have considered writing a Civil War Story, but Civil War isn't my favorite at all, and I don't know much about it. I had some fairly good ideas for it though...if not a bit typical. Find out that your best friend's fighting for the North instead of South, vice verse. But anyway. Not a creature worth playing with right now. My basic plan for the rest of September is to work hard at school and do some reading a little writing. I'll hit writing extra hard in October through December. I would like to develop writing habits, but it might be hard and even inconvenient at times. I don't like to be in my room, by myself, to read or write. It just doesn't work very well. For one thing, there is no computer in my room. For another, I need to be in a part of the house where people at least walk by frequently, or where I don't alone, even if I am. Computer is most of though. I can't write near as well in a notebook. I take notes, excerpts and new story ideas, odd facts, names...a bunch of random stuff that you just sketch out with a pen. My actual book, outline, important notes that need eloquence...I need the computer for that. I guess I just like the bouncy way of typing. Anyway, I better sign off for now. Thanks for reading!
Anna Elizabeth Hedges

Monday, September 17, 2007

Outline Finished

Hello, hello, hello.
Friday night I stayed up until 12:30 to finish my 60-page outline, which doubles as the first draft of my book. Now, all I have to do is forget about it for awhile, let some people read it, and start another outline and then write the book. I AM SO EXCITED!!!!!! I am a little surprised too. I planned on this book being fairly short; not a 700-page book. I planned on less than 60 chapters, like 50 or 55, and instead ended up with 85 chapters and 106 scenes. I am going to edit the outline a little, then let some people read it to see if they have any suggestions on the plot. I plan to have at least part of the book finished by Christmas....I'm considering splitting it into Part One and Part Two. Maybe even a Part Three. If I can get a third or half of the book done by Christmas, I will be happy. Then I can finish it before I have start school again in January. :)
The only thing about writing this book that I am worried about is this; ink and paper. I hope my printer doesn't die. It's harder to revise on the computer, but I think I'll try to get it as perfect as I can, and I might have to make people read it on the computer instead of on paper. I was using Karen S. Wiesner's book First Draft in 30 Days, which did help a lot. There were a lot of steps in the book that I didn't feel were necessary, and I didn't follow, finish, or go all out for most of them. Character Sketches was the first step; which was easy enough but also annoying. Character questionnaires are a boring to me. I like to write a few random paragraphs on the character, so I think I'll do that next time. It did say that when you were done with the outline that you should 'put it on the shelf and forget about for a while. The longer the better.' Not her exact words, but that's what she says to do. I'm trying to decide if I need to start outlining the next book or think of another project to start and then put in a folder. I have the first middle of the second book all taken care of...though it could use a little more crisis. The last half...I'm not sure. The ending is mostly sketched out in my head too, but what of the rest? She says to get my mind off the previous project I just finished. I just wonder if I should do something else instead of the second book in the series; something I am debating about. Guess I'll ask my verbal partner. :)
Although I have a lot of ideas for other books, I haven't got anything concrete hard. I'm thinking about eventually trying new types of fantasy, like something taking place in India or Arabia, or even the Great Depression. I tend to ask myself how a fantasy would do in a certain place or time. only real problem is figuring out what do for the rest of September. My plan is to write about one scene a day at least, and as many as I can on Saturdays and Sundays. I'm just starting back to school today, but I haven't quite gotten my schedule down. But I plan on making writing something I do everyday. I am also debating on whether to do five books or seven for this series. I have seven titles, but the ideas haven't entirely come with them yet. The third one is perhaps my worst idea. The fourth is alright, the fifth I like even better, sixth is alright, and the seventh is good. None of them have me fired up like the second one does. I better go, but more news about the book and my new writing project soon!
Anna Elizabeth Hedges

Thursday, September 13, 2007

New Poll

I just wanted to let everybody know that the new poll is going to be on for about a week, and you are aloud more than one answer. Thanks for reading!

Who is Your favorite writer of fantasy?
1. Christopher Paolini wrote Eragon and Eldest: 50%
2. C.S. Lewis wrote The Chronicles of Narnia and the Space Trilogy: 75%
3. J.R.R. Tolkien wrote The Lord of the Rings and the Simarillion: 50%
4. J.K. Rowling wrote Harry Potter: 25%
5. Ted Dekker wrote the Circle Trilogy: 0%
6. Cornelia Funke wrote Inkheart and Inkspell: 25%
7. J.M. Barrie wrote Peter Pan: 50%
8. All of the Above: 25%

I voted for all of the above. I am really disappointed that Lewis got more than Tolkien, because I consider Tolkien's works to be as great as Lewis's. I'm afraid that I dont' like to see one of them getting more attention than the other. If I had to choose I think it would be Tolkien, even though I like them both almost as equally. If you have any thoughts, please leave a comment.

The Little White Horse

A few weeks ago, I started and finished The Little White Horse by Elizabeth Goudge. It was a pretty good little book....but not the best. You can really tell that it was written by a woman. I think she intended it for females. I really don't think that most guys would care for it....although it is creative. A dog that turns out to be a lion was perhaps one of my favorite animal characters in the book, except for Serena a silver hair. I didn't like some of the theology in it, although I am not sure if she meant anything in particular by it. It had a kind of flavor that reminded me of L.M. Montgomery, who is one of the best female writers I know of. The Little White Horse was only sighted a few times in the book. I was disappointed when I found that Wrolf was a lion, not a dog, so I decided that he must be a different creature all together. He was described so many times as a dog; and I honestly think that one would notice if their dog were a lion or not. It had a nice little romance going on, quite innocent and very amusing. Three couples that had broken up or not seen each other for a long time ended up getting married. I would say that is worth reading, possibly buying. It wasn't the best book, but I did enjoy it. It is about a 13 year old named Maria; thus the girlish things mentioned throughout the book that I am not sure would really take place. A boy of the same age doing flower arrangements for his future bride?
Good, but not great. Girls will enjoy it, moms will probably think it is amusing...inbetweens, you'll have to decide for yourself. I will also say this: the book isn't as enchanting as it looks. Don't judge this book by its cover. 2 stars.
Anna Elizabeth Hedges

Dear Reader

Dear Reader,
Today I am back from vacation, which was fun, sort of relaxing, and a bit uncomfortable. We had a small, one room cabin with a small refrigerator, small microwave, small TV, small closet, and a remote with low batteries. It was fun; but I found that I could concentrate on little else except listening to my Cd's over and over (I don't get a lot of new Cd's because I am inclined to spend my money on books) and perhaps watching TV at night. And having fun during the day. The first day, we went on a long hike that I really wasn't in shape for. Dad had to drag me back to the car. The next day, we went to Ruidoso, where we played Putt-Putt (I won the second round and came in second after we added the points from both) thought about going to a movie (which we didn't because there wasn't anything good playing at the puny movie theater) and spent about an hour or two in Starbucks, where I had a Double Chocolate Chip frappucino and got a little work done on my book. Ruidoso was really a lot of fun; we also went to the horse museum, even though we have been there countless times before. I love to look at the huge horse models, probably about 4 or 5 times real-life size. I wonder if they were that big before the flood?
They also had some beautiful western art, which included an amazing bronze carving of fawn. When I saw it, I thought the ears were a bit big for it, but after seeing some wild deer on a hike yesterday, I really don't think they were. They have very big ears. We saw the same trio of deer three or four times; which was a great experience really. I see wild deer fairly often. My cousin lives in the middle of some woods, and deer come near the house often. Still, I always enjoy a glimpse of them. Yesterday we also drove to the White Sands of New Mexico, which was really great fun. First, we climbed some huge dunes, tried to make a sand castle (we gave up and made a mound, put an ugly face in it, and named it Jabba the Hut) and I even rolled down a few. It made me dizzy, and I was very gritty. I took my shoes off and walked in the sand bare foot. I generally don't wear tennis shoes anyway. Flip-flops or nothing.
We then drove around, looking at all the dunes, the picnic area, (which reminded me of something from a pop-adventure novel) and the I got to do some driving on the roads. That was especially fun. The roads I drove on were made from sand, though it was hard (duh!) and I did some fast reversing while listening to a fast song that revved me up for it. I think my brother Jason might be horrified. :) He was the first person to let me behind the wheel. I ran over some weeds and I think a curb when he was teaching me to drive, and I never did very good with reversing. I enjoyed the whole trip. I really understand why people go crazy in the desert now. It isn't just the heat, it's the light. Sun on white sand is nearly blinding. It's just so bright...and none of us had brought sunglasses. I am glad to be home though. Later this afternoon, I am ready for a long talk with my cousin, and also ready to get some real work done on my book. The outline is coming along well, actually quite well, and these days I am in an exceptionally good mood. I haven't had a lot of time for reading, but I have the rest of today, tomorrow, Saturday, and Sunday to get in a lot of reading and writing, though I think writing especially. Once school starts for me on Monday, I'll have to put my nose back to the grindstone and work on less pleasurable things than the adventures of Dwalyn and her friends. I do have a head cold, with a wretched cough, slightly stuffy nose, and stuffed up ears so my voice is loud and muffled at the same time and everybody else is oddly quiet. I'll be glad just to be rid of the stuffy ears. The cough and the nose I can live with. I think I am getting a bit better. I am now home, so I am in the proper atmosphere to write and get better. I can't hardly write anything worth while except short notes and excerpts away from home. I do much better typing than I do on paper, with a pen. Notes, lore, ideas....most of that goes into my journals. The book and big important projects for it go into the computer. A lot of writers prefer handwriting things to computer, but I just don't do as good. Typing is faster, so I am more inclined to write more and take the time to make it sound better. I'm a fairly fast at typing, so I get a lot done in one day if I work on it a lot.

I have a lot of reading and writing to do this fall. I have a long list of books to read, which include the ones I haven't yet read that I got for my birthday, the ones I have bought and borrowed since, and the ones I plan on buying before Christmas. I intend to write every day during this school year, if I can. After school and chores is done, or in between or something. I want to hit it hard and see how much I can get done by Christmas. I have drafted nearly sixty chapters and over seventy scenes, I think. Outlining process. The book is turning out longer than I thought; I was thinking fifty chapters, but the book as at least another twenty to go. I'm not ashamed though. :)
I'm not the only one.
I wish I could have gotten all this done before, but Tolkien started over a lot on his book to. At least I have the common sense to know it isn't right after one chapter. Tolkien would get like half way through the book. Whoa! I have written a lot. I need to go....lots of reading and writing and talking to do still today. heh heh.
Anna Elizabeth Hedges

Sunday, September 9, 2007

All I can say is...well, read it

heh heh.
Yo, hello and hullo.
I must be on a roll here. This is good and bad. I have just finished creating a formatted outline capsule for CHAPTER 50!!!!!!!!
Yes, I said fifty. And I have at least 20 more to go! Maybe 30! I am sooooo excited. The outline will be at least mostly completed by next Sunday. Tomorrow morning, my mom and dad and I are going to Cloudcroft NM for a little vacation. We're going to a foreign country. Anything more than 500 miles from Brownfield Texas is foreign country. Except maybe South Bend, Indiana. :) Got family up there. So, we are staying for...1,2,3, (counting on fingers...or in my head) 3 nights. We'll come home Thursday. I have exactly a week of total freedom from school until I have to start a grueling schedule. I am just so excited because my book is going so well......although there are still several rough spots, I just cannot wait to finish it! Hey, it isn't any new Lord of the Rings, but I like it. :) I hope it is at least as good as Eragon...or half as good. :) :( Because, Eragon is a pretty good book. Not as good as Lord of the Rings, but good. Good writer, though the book isn't exactly what you might call classic. Anyway. I cannot express without screaming and laughing in your face how excited I will be when I finish this outline and start writing. That will be nothing compared to what I might do when I actually finish the second draft of the book...maybe I'll jump in the swimming pool, even if it is going to be like, December. Might be cold.

CALM DOWN.....I was just kidding.
see how excited I am! can't even type anything interesting. At least this way you get to see some of my ecstatic personality.....I think that is the word.....anyway I should sign off before I really make a fool of myself!!!!
Anna Elizabeth Hedges

Friday, September 7, 2007

Vacation, Bliss, All-Day at the Computer

I will have the world know that I am in a very good mood. A very good mood. I have been spending nearly all day, every day at the computer. Why? Because I am a writer and I am writing. I am using a 30-day method, which is going amazingly well. I have drafted about 28 chapters or so, and about 40 scenes. I can't remember the exact amount; but it is going great! No wait, scratch that. The prologue had another 4 or 5 scenes to itself. This is bliss and vacation to me. Here is the only problem: I have about 30 books I need to read and I can't concentrate very well on books if I am writing. I hope to have the whole book plotted out soon, then I'll need to revise it and start writing. I might possibly have the second (final?) draft done by Christmas....which is my goal. I hope to anyway. If I spend my free time writing every day (hopefully again) then I might be able to manage it. And free time on Saturdays....that's my plan. My Characters have just started on their quest, and over the last two days a new character weaseled his way into the story. I wasn't actually planning on it, but he did, and now he is one of the Characters going on the quest. It still has some glitches, obviously, but I'll be able to go over those, or plow through them. Recreate them. I am so excited! I plan on spending most of the afternoon reading and writing. Next week I will be going to Ruidoso, so I will not be blogging regularly. I'll be starting school soon too, but I plan to keep writing through-out our Ruidoso trip and brainstorming. The outline should be roughly finished by next Friday. Well, I should go for now, but thanks for reading. The world must know how excited I am, and why I am in a brilliant mood despite the stuffy nose, ugly cough, and chapped mouth. Bad cold. :(
Anna Elizabeth Hedges

Monday, September 3, 2007

The Miraculous Journy of Edward Tulane

On Saturday, we went to our Hastings on 50th street and I got several books because they are going out of business and all the books are 50% off. One of those was The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane. I read the first four chapters in about fifteen minutes Saturday night and read the rest of them Sunday morning on our way to church.

Here is what I thought of it:
Kids 6 and up: this is a book worth reading, although I don't know about buying. Perhaps. Adults: Read it to your kids, but don't waste an hour reading it for yourself.
It starts out with Edward, who is a very distinguished china rabbit with a lovely gold pocket watch and nice trousers and vests and suits. He is loved deeply by a girl named Abilene Tulane, and noticed often by her grandmother, Pellegrina. I think the moral of the story was to love. I thought it was a bit ridiculous. Edward didn't love Abilene, but Abilene loved him, as any child will learn to love their childhood friends. Edward was a bit like a pet or sibling to Abilene. I thought it was a bit ridiculous to have a rabbit that was so proud of himself that he refused to truly love Abilene. Every story I have read or browsed through about toys had the toys at least feeling some attachment to their owners. I think the Velveteen Rabbit did perhaps love the little boy, but he wanted more to be a real rabbit. It was too long ago. I can't remember. In some ways, Edward Tulane was quite a charming story. Edward ends up being separated from Abilene and meeting lots of new owners who he ends up loving. For nearly a year, Edward is trapped on the bottom of the sea, and being a china rabbit, he cannot drown or truly die. Being at the bottom of the ocean is just and only miserable and frightening to him. He ends up with a sailor and his wife, whom he learns to love. The next pair is even better. A dog finds him at takes him to her hobo-owner, who decides that he likes the rabbit and talks to it as if he could answer. His journey and the people he learns to love is charming and sweet, perhaps, the ending fine enough, but I think that the reason for Edward's hardship was a bit ridiculous. I won't tell all here, you might decide it's worth reading. I give it 2 stars, but I do think it was worth reading once and knowing what it was about. You never know about Kate DiCamillo. Because of Winn-Dixie was her best book I think; The Tale of Desperaux was good too. Those are her two best books. I have not read the Mercy Watson books, but they look a bit corny to me. The Tiger Rising was creative but it was also terrible. Because of Winn-Dixie and The Tale of Desperaux would have to earn at least 4 stars. The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane, though both charming and creative, was good, but not good enough. I will mention the illustrations in it. They were pretty and well done. Without illustrations, the story might not be worth reading. Some people will love Edward Tulane; others will despise it. Decide for yourself. It is worth reading, but I don't recommend buying it. At least I got my copy half off. I wish it had been Desperaux instead. :)
Anna Elizabeth Hedges