Wednesday, January 25, 2006


I'm reading several books right now. They're stacked by my bed and under the pillows. I like to read more than one book so that I can switch when I get bored, or if the particular story or subject doesn't strike my fancy. I usually am able to finish a book in a week or so, even when I'm reading like five of them. Since this summer though I haven't been able to complete anything. At least that's what it feels like. This is a bad sign because the same thing applies to my writing. I've got lots of things started and I write on them all, but I'm not finishing. I'm wondering if I start finishing the books will I start finishing the stories/scripts, etc?

Here is, in no particular order, the book that I'm reading:

Bird by Bird by Anne LaMott. This is a book about writing. I love Anne LaMotte, but I can't remember if there's an "e" on the end of her name or not. Anyway, I first discovered her on and then my friend Peggy gave me her book about faith called "Traveling Mercies." Excellent book. I love her voice. I want to go find her and hang out with her and be her best friend. She's one of those people who has a wonderful way of seeing the world that's all her own and I would imagine that she is considered eccentric by many. This book is about writing and how hard it is to finish stuff and what helps to do that. I don't think I've read enough of it for the advice to sink in yet. I do stare at the blank screen a lot.

Vamped - I can't remember who wrote this, but darling Alli sent this to me and I am totally enjoying it. I can't wait to pass it on to Lady Euthanasia, my friend who writes erotic horror. This book will appeal to her sense of humor and dark sensibilities. An interesting story about a vampire in a world where everybody's been vamped. He finds a kid who's still human and decides he wants to be a daddy. This is more challenging than just taking on a six year old. It's a six year old who is considered fresh meat in the literal sense. Can you imagine having a six year old being an obnoxious six year old and every instinct you have wants to eat them? You know there are days where you'd have to put yourself on time out so you don't kill them. I know parents who aren't vampires who feel like that sometimes.

My Grandfather's Blessing - this book is written by a cancer doctor whose grandpa was a rabbi who studied the kabbalah. It's all about the blessing that are around us everyday. This book makes me cry everytime I read it. But in a good way.

On Writing by Stephen King - the master of horror writes about the horror of writer's block, bad grammer and cliches. He too has a distinctive voice that makes you feel like you're having a conversation with him. He has an awareness of his talent as a writer and the fact that in this world a naturally great writer is a rare thing to find. The rest of us work hard to be good.

A Million Little Pieces - Okay, I started reading this book before the great revelation about James Frey's embellishing. I was annoyed by his constant reference to himself as a "drug addict and criminal" before it was revealed that he wasn't that big a criminal. Of course, having dated my share of drug addicts I understand the level of narcissism and delusional thinking that goes along with that type of personality. I don't think that he embellished that bit about the root canal with no novocaine. I can't stand the way he writes. I hate the Constant, Seemingly Random Capitalizing of certain letters. What is up with that?

I Am Charlotte Simmons by Tom Wolfe - I'm a big TW fan and I liked this book because I could see it as a film. As usual he creates characters that are flawed and memorable and easy to love and hate at the same time.

And that's all I can remember right now. I know there's more, but I'm fried. And that's why I probably won't read tonight.

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