How I became a...
Just like everyone else, even when my plate is pretty full, I keep coming back to the buffet for more. I am a writer, a writing teacher, an editor, a dog rescuer, a photographer, an artist, a mother, a father (just kidding). I'm also a big advocate of ebooks. I completely believe that it is only a matter of time before the ebook industry is competitive with the world of print publishing. I also work with the Dark Romance group to help bring people over from the world of print books to the other side, i.e., ebooks.
I used to gather writer information and review books on stone tablets in the primitive stone age bbs community of GEnie's Writer's Ink. After that, I reviewed for About.com but the guide retired, started a publishing company and bought one of my books. I have reviewed for other sites, including Myshelf.
My taste in books:
I am an indiscriminate reader. I read alot--an eclectic list of just about everything. I had an online bookstore of secondhand books for a while and as a result, I have a little of everything. My love is literary short stories--but I read romance and most fiction. I tend to go through phases where I glut on a particular genre and then abruptly can't deal with it any more.
I like the traditional writers who penned the classics== from Edgar Allen Poe to the Brontes and Jane Austin, Asimov, Malamud, Tolkien-- contemporary writers like Cynthia Ozick, Rick Bass and Pam Houston, historical romance writers like Laura Kinsale (have you read her Shadow Heart?) or even the long gone but never forgotten Georgette Heyer; speculative fiction authors like Ray Bradbury, Piers Anthony, Margaret Weiss and Tracy Hickman and our own Steve Lazarowitz. Ann Macaffrey, Brian Jaques, Leon Uris, Chaim Potek, Margarite Henry, Michael Creighton, Shel Silverstein. The more authors I think of, the more I remember I have loved. If I were to list all of the authors who caught me in their visions at one time or another, this page would never finish loading.
What makes a book a keeper?
What makes me throw a book at the wall?
Sometimes it is the quality of writing. Sometimes it is the story or the message. Perhaps it sweeps me along in the dream, or it speaks to me. A keeper is somehow, bigger than the sum of its parts. Sometimes it is even a single line out of a work that cracks the mold. Like Rick Bragg's book "All About the Shoutin'" where he says about his mother, "Anyone could tell it, anyone who had a momma who went eighteen years without a new dress so that her sons could have school clothes, who picked cotton in other people's fields and. . .cleaned the mess in other people's houses, so that her children didn't have to live on welfare alone, so that one of them could climb up her backbone and escape the poverty and hopelessness that ringed them, free and clean."
That, my fellow readers and writers, is a keeper.
I hate writing that reveals the writer's heart isn't into the craft of the thing.
My favorite genre and why?
My least favorite genre and why?
I love literary short stories. They're an art form, a perfect picture or sometimes the perfect question. It may be cheating to call that a genre though, because you can find them in all genres. The point is that a good story leaves you with a question, a concept or a character forever lodged in your head. The greater truth is that after you leave a good short story, that story never leaves you.
Horror and gore, graphic shock for it's own sake. I just don't get it. Though I loved Talisman, King gives me nightmares. I avoid horror.
My Bathroom Library
My to be read list:
Right now our bathroom book is Always Wear Clean Underwear Before that it was (in order) Dialogues of Plato, Dubliners, Best American Short Stories 1991. Our bathrooms are always stocked with books that I know my kids will love but that they'd never start if they weren't a captive audience.
Everything ever written that I haven't read yet.
My favorite links:
My favorite reading snack:
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