Thursday, March 26, 2009

Reading, reading and....unfortunately, LESS reading.


This month, I HAVE been doing a lot of reading. Besides The Bad Beginning By Lemony Snicket and Anne of the Island by L.M. Montgomery, I've read several other books, and have been reading two books with all of those. I reread The Hobbit, parts of a book on writing science fiction and fantasy (not great) and Thr3e by Ted Dekker, which was excellent. I wish I had read it before I see the movie. If you haven't seen the movie or read the book yet, read the book first! It'll make it a lot more enjoyable if you don't know what's coming. Besides, if I see the movie first, I have a certain loyalty to it. I like the way they arranged the ending in the movie a little better than Dekker wrote it in the book...but he has such a great voice, and eloquent way of writing. Kevin is such a great character!

I've been reading The Iliad and Ben-Hur by Lew Wallace all night.

Unfortunately, I haven't read as much as I should, so I'm five books behind my end-month deadline. I was about to start The Reason For God by Timothy Keller, but even finishing that by the end of this month seems like a load...besides, I have a TON of stuff to memorize for some test I have to do for Driver's Ed. UGH! So, I'm letting myself off of my reading goal. I'm going to start something comfortable and easy (Warriors, Harry Potter, or Lloyd Alexander, whose books I have never read) and if I finish it and more before the end of the month, that'll be great. I'll just be behind. April is going to be mad, with driver's classes. May might be pretty mad too. Mikaela is coming. (**gulp**)
I dearly hope that May won't be as mad as April so that I can catch up, because I doubt that I'll catch up then. But if not, there's still the whole summer. I'll only be doing school part time for two months, and then none at all in August.
Releasing myself from the reading goal for this month really does take a load off....oh well. I'm excited about Driver's School, but it's going to be inconvenient when my brother comes for a visit. Besides, they have some rules about missing classes....can't remember them right now....don't want to. :D
Goo'Night!
Anna

Monday, March 23, 2009

Writing Update

I just added up the approximate estimates on all of my word documents concerning Indrego, Book One.

Guess what?

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I have written approximately 125 pages. YAHOO!!!!!!!!!! I am wildly excited about this. I have never stuck with a draft this long. I usually quit after getting close to 100. Plus, I'm over half way through the first half of the book, which is way farther than I've ever gotten before. In a few months, there's another layer that I'm going to try to add from another character's point of view. I don't know exactly how that's going to work yet, but that's the only layer that I'm planning on adding. I'm working on the eighteenth chapter, and I'm estimating that I have anywhere from eight - twelve chapters before I finish Part One. I do have an outline, but sometimes I make two chapters one, one chapter two, or add chapters that I didn't originally plan. I LOVE WRITING.

Anna

Friday, March 20, 2009

Excellent Horse Trilogy

I've watched all of these movies recently and loved them. I love horses to death. Horses and dogs are my two tops. I had seen all of them before, but they all seemed so good, even if it was for the hundredth time....


The Man from Snowy River

I've watched this for as long as I can remember. The music is beautiful, the acting is good, and it's just a great, poetic story.

Seabiscuit

This movie is INCREDIBLE....I'm actually tempted to watch it again sometime soon. I enjoyed seeing this one again soooo much. It has Tobey Maguire (Spider-man) in it and it's a great great story inspired by the real-life race horse.

Dreamer

I nearly cried, watching it today, even though I've seen it countless time. It's a really sweet movie, and all the characters are great. At the moment I can't think (and really don't want to think) of a better feel-good movie.

These are my picks for this month!










All of them are even better than they look.
Anna

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Rattlesnake Roundup


Yesterday, I went with Andy and Alissa to the Rattlesnake Roundup in Sweetwater TX.

It was really fun, and also incredibly creepy, and off the wall. Freakish. Wicked Sick.

If you want to see pictures and an overall account of what happened, click on the link above.

Anna

PS. See the snake tattoo I got on the back of my hand? ;)

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

My Picks for Best Books in March.....


The full moon, well risen in a cloudless eastern sky, covered the high solitude with its light. We are not conscious of daylight as that which displaces darkness. Daylight, even when the sun is clear of clouds, seems to us simply the natural condition of the earth and air. When we think of the downs, we think of the downs in daylight, as we think of a rabbit with its fur on. Stubbs may have envisaged the skeleton inside the horse, but most of us do not: and we do not usually envisage the downs without daylight, even though the light is not a part of the down itself.... We take daylight for granted. But moonlight is another matter. It is inconstant. The full moon wanes and returns again. Clouds may obscure it to an extent to which they cannot obscure daylight. Water is necessary to us, but a waterfall is not. Where it is to be found it is something extra, a beautiful ornament.......When it [moonlight] comes, it serves no necessary. It transforms. It falls upon the banks and the grass, separating one long blade from another; turning a drift of brown, frosted leaves form a single heap to innumerable flashing fragments; or gunmering lengthways along wet twigs as though light itelf were ductile. Its long beams pour, white and sharp, between the trunks of trees, their clarity fading as they recede into the powedery, misty distance of beechwoods at night. In moonlight, two acres of coarse bent grass, undulant and ankle deep, tumbled and rough as a horse's mane, appear like a bay of waves, all shadowy troughs and hollows. The growth is so thick and matted that even the wind does not move it, but it is the moonlight that seems to confer stillness upon it. We do not take moonlight for granted. It is like snow, or like the dew on a july morning. It does not reveal but changes what it covers. And its low intensity - so much lower than that of daylight - makes us conscious that it is something added to the down, to give it, for only a little time, a singular and marvelous quality that we should admire while we can, for soon it will be gone again.
- Richard Adams, Watership Down


I crammed my head full of as much of this stuff as I could stand and locked it away in my mind out of sight, left it alone. Figured I could send a truck back for it later.
-Bob Dylan, Chronicles Volume One

Monday, March 9, 2009

Recent Reads


Hello everyone. For all of my friends, if it seems I've been silent for awhile, I have two good excuses for not making comments, e-mails or facebook statuses. All last week I had a beastly cold and my internet was out. So, I haven't been able to post the books I've conquered, what I'm reading next, or really much of anything. So, here I am to catch up. HI.


Reading First::::

1. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by J.K. Rowling
This is the longest Harry Potter book, and also the one with the best cover, besides Goblet of Fire. I had so much fun reading it again...reading J.K. Rowling is so relaxing and warming. She's easy and funny and magical....what more do you want from a good fantasy book?

2. Infidel by Ted Dekker
This one was good. I don't think that it's fair that he thinks of good plots nearly every time he writes a book.

3. The Children of Hurin by J.R.R. Tolkien
Oh wow! I read this in two days, partly because it was so brilliant, partly because I was working hard to finish up books fast and meet my deadline. This book was great, and sad. And Alan Lee did the marvelous illustrations inside. I feel like I'm really starting to live up to my self-given label of Tolkien Freak now that I've read seven of his books and a biography on him and a few of his letters. Not to mention most of the appendices in those books! Gosh.

4. Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson
I started this in the fall last year, and enjoyed what I read of it. I finished this the same day that I finished Children of Hurin....that was a long reading night, full of hard, sleepy work, getting through Jim killing Isaac Hands and then getting captured by Silver and his men. I liked it, but I didn't like it as much as I expected.

5. Warriors Super Edition: Firestar's Quest by Erin Hunter
This was pretty good, but not as good as I remember the first cycle being. I prefer the books that stay grounded in the clan with familiar cats. It's more interesting to me when conflicts arise among the familiars. The writing seemed a bit weak in places...although that may be because it was written for a younger audience. Still, Erin Hunter's books are fun reads, however unliterary they are.

6. Ginger Pye by Eleanor Estes
I love Eleanor Estes books. I read her book The Witch Family last October....and it was one of the funnest books ever! I quote from it all the time (Oh, Hurly Burly!). Her books are full of adorable quotes. In Ginger Pye I especially noticed "Oh Boombernickles." My mom read this to me when I was little, and I remember her saying "Oh Boombernickles." when she read it, and how she read certain paragraphs. Estes captures the heart of a dog really well. I like the part where it says that Ginger's heart was singing "Jerry jerry jerry!" Haha...you probably have to read it or read the quote to appreciate it, but I'm too lazy to put the quote up.

7. Chronicles Volume One by Bob Dylan
I finished this book in two days, just like so many other books that week. The writing is brilliant. Bob Dylan sings, plays guitar, writes songs and incredible autobiogrpahies. I hope that he'll still write Volume Two. He has a really unique writing voice and an interesting way of writing. He would explain about the people he was mentioning, go for pages of background and random facts, and just random little weird memories. It was like taking a trip through his brain. It was loads of fun to read it. He's a great writer.

Since the beginning of March, I've read two other books too:

1. The Bad Beginning by Lemony Snicket
This was really easy to read and not as enjoyable as I thought it would be. I thought I would read the whole series through again, but I don't think I want to use my time up on them. Not that it isn't a good book, but it's written so simply, again for a younger audience and without a very distinctive voice, I just don't think I'll enjoy them as much. However, I may cruise the front pages for the dedication quotes. Those are funny and ingenious. (For Beatrice - darling, dearest, dead. )

2. Anne of the Island by L.M. Montgomery
Beautiful writing. I love all the metaphors and poetic descriptions of the days and nights and Davy Keith! He's sooo funny. I'm sure there's a little kid just like him, somewhere, wreaking hilarious havoc. It'll be awhile before I pick up another Anne book, but maybe I'll read The Golden Road or something soon. I've read part of it before and really liked it. I wish there were more writers like L.M. Montgomery that spit in the face of plot and make a beautiful story anyway. Of course there is a plot in the book, but it doesn't feel like it's carefully planned out. It feels pretty natural, except for all the proposals that Anne gets. That seemed just a little bit unrealistic to me, but oh well. It was a nice girl read.


I'm reading The Iliad and Ben-Hur throughout the month. I'm going to start The Hobbit either tonight or tomorrow, and I also might read through King's Dragon by Kate Elliot. I found out about that book on The Faerie Carousel, in the side bar reading list.....just one other good reason to actually go to a blog after you get the new post on your google reader. The layout of blogs is interesting, dontcha reckon?

Goodnight to all.
Anna
Post book of the month soon. If you want links for the books, sorry. You'll have to go find them yourself...it's too much trouble to do all the going and pasting.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Victory!

I finished Chronicles by Bob Dylan five minutes before my self-given deadline, and I succeeded in reading twelve books.

Victory!