Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Fanny Price... and fisticuffs

I am often late to the party when it comes to hilarious YouTube videos. However, on the off chance that you're an Austen fan who hasn't seen this yet... enjoy.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Alaskan Adventure: the Cover Vote

You long-term readers of the blog will note that I have a group of friends from college who occasionally go on "Super Special" adventures. This is where we meet up for an event that involves travel and hijinks. For those of you former Baby-Sitters Club fans, we totally stole the "Super Special" idea from them.

For a history on my college friends (and why we're called the GISP) you can visit this previous post. (Bonus! The post shows me in my wedding dress, because my nuptials were Super Special #1.) In the post, I also promised to share pictures from Super Special #2: Alaskan Adventure. Fool that I am, I promised to share those pictures in a timely fashion.

Clearly, that hasn't happened... nor is it going to this moment.

Rather, I need your vote. I have two potential Super Special covers (because yes, we like to pretend that our vacations are books). I also have one gratuitously posed picture. Yes! You can click on them to make them bigger.

Which do you think would make an excellent Super Special cover?
And while we're on the subject of covers... anyone have a cover you love, or a cover you love to hate? All the better if it's a BSC book!

#1: Gratuitous Posing

#2 Copper River
#3 Rafting Near Glaciers

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Going Way Back

A few days ago I returned to Seattle after visiting my past. I took Big Boy and Miss Bossy Boots to Cincinnati's Kings Island Amusement Park where I worked in the summer of 1990. I hadn't been there in twenty years, and the day transported me like a vintage Michael J. Fox movie. Miss Boots took this picture of me posed in front of the mirrored windows of the "fancy" park restaurant where I once waitressed. In the picture I'm trying to explain to a four-year old how long ago "twenty" is.

Many books or authors evoke a general time for me, the eighties or college or my California years, but some make me think of a specific point in my life. West with the Night by Beryl Markham resonated for me in 1993 after I jumped from the East to West Coast.

A recent plea for help identifying a book by a few plot elements at the Smart Bitches website led to a long thread about various way-old romances and someone mentioned Jennifer Blake. BOOM I was back in the mid-eighties in Ohio in my light grey bedroom with geometric black and red accents (red rubberized picture frames, I kid you not), reading Royal Seduction. Does anyone else remember Rolfe, Prince of Ruthenia, and Angeline? Perhaps you recall the feather scene? Or the back cover text, "Angeline, awakened to sensuality, was not entirely unwilling to be his captive!" Well, yearn no more - it's being reissued by Sourcebooks on August 3. Now I can shed twenty years for $7.99 instead of the price of a plane ticket to Ohio. (Mr. Richland, if you are reading this, you have an idea for a birthday present.)

Anything outrageous - songs, music, a food, a Wa-dog with cheese - that takes you back in time?

Monday, July 05, 2010

Independence Day

Happy belated Independence Day, American readers of DSW!

How did you spend your holiday?

I always feel slightly torn about the 4th of July. I have two aunts (one on each side of the family) who both throw killer shindigs. I can't be in two places at once... and often I am out of town altogether (my friend group is definitely in the wedding stage of life). What to do? What to do? I just want to see everyone and do everything.

When we were little, this wasn't a problem. We'd always drive to my paternal grandparents and spend a day shooting off all kinds of fireworks. Really, it's a wonder my cousins and I survived with all of our appendages in tact. My grandmother used to have to come to the back field with her dish tub full of water, admonishing, "Stop setting the anthill on fire! This is the last time I'm coming up here!" All of the "old people" would sit on the porch, drinking beer and reminiscing while we kids made the air blue with firecracker smoke. There would be tons of food and classic country music. At night, after almost everyone left, we cousins would set up our sleeping bags in the piano room. While Grandpa watched a Western outside the door, Grandma would read to us from the same book she always did (a collection of fairy tales with great illustrations and old-book smell).

This was my grandfather's favorite holiday, and it was a Big Deal in our family. I sometimes wonder why there aren't more Fourth of July romance novels... is it just me, or does Christmas really get all the seasonal book attention? Someone with marketing knowledge, please explain this to me! (I'm sure the reasoning is incredibly obvious, or perhaps there's a whole 4th of July sub-genre out there that I don't even know about.)

And yes. You may have noticed that this post really has nothing to do with writing. So true... but I'm going to go to a critique group at the end of July, so I hope to have exciting, craft-related information at that time! Stay tuned...