Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Crusades!

Blogging crusades, that is! Hey, it's that time of year again and the lovely Rachael Harrie is running the Blogger Crusades again (now officially called the CAMPAIGN) and there's still time to sign up!

Just head over there now and fill out the form. It's a great way to connect with fellow bloggers and help improve our platforms. Always a great time!

As for me, I'm taking a brief blogcation while we close on our new home (hopefully in a couple of days.) I'll be back Sep. 1 for new posts, but until then I'll still be hopping around to visit as many blogs as I can, in between moving and unpacking. #DoubleUGH

If you're working on a project, happy writing.

If you're on a quest to read as many books as you can, happy reading.

Whatever path you're on, I'm wishing you much peace and love, inspiration and motivation!

See you 'round the blogosphere! And back here on Sep. 1! If you need to reach me feel free to email or tweet or Facebook message me.

Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Stardate: 08.22.2011 Mission: Blogfest


CYBERSPACE, the final frontier. These are the voyages of the blog PK HREZO. It's indefinite mission: to explore strange new blogs, to seek out new followers and new nifty websites, to boldly go where no blogger has gone before ......

*insert Star Trek theme song here*

Welcome to the fun filled Star Trek blogfest hosted by Ellie Garrett. Check out my post on my fave characters and why I love the show, then turn on your warp speed and head over to Ellie's blog and check out all the entries!


Okay, so when I was a kid my parents used to have Star Trek marathons--the original series with Captain Kirk and Spock. When a new Star Trek film would come out, we'd pack up the family for the event. I think I saw every one of the films at the theatres. I remember when Spock gave his life and then regenerated on Genesis. That was huge... I never forgot seeing that for the first time.



Then when I was on my own in college,  I used to watch The New Generation reruns every night before bed. I was so addicted ... I've seen every single one of them, but since it's been awhile, I don't exactly remember any episodes in particular that stood out for me. Of course I had a total crush on Jean-Luc Picard. And I loved the character Q.



Not sure who I'd pick to fly my starship between Captain Kirk or Captian Picard. Hey, I thought Captain Janeway from Voyager was pretty darn good too. (Yay for chick captains!)

Aside from the captains, I'd say my fave characters were:
Deanna Troi (loved she was an empath)
Spock and Sarek (loved Spock was half human and his relationship with his father)
Bones (his contrast to spock and the conflict there)
Worf (such an animal! Love it!)
the Borg queen (loved the idea of the borg as a collective with one queen. awesome!)


I love all the films, but really loved the idea of the nexxus in Generations. Plus when Captain Kirk showed up it was outta sight dynamite! Oh and the newest film rocked!! Can't wait for the next one!

I've been to Star Trek festivals that are a ton of fun, and always makes me understand what the term "die hard fan" means. LOL. I love the stories, have read a few of the books, but I'm not partial to Star Trek over Star Wars. A lot of fans think we have to decide which. I say, I can love both. And I'm sticking to it. :D

Thanks so much for stopping by! Here's a pic of Little PK (future Trekkie) with my trusty telecom I keep on my desk. You know, for those emergency beam ups. ;)

All kinds of goodies on the Star Trek website here. And don't forget to visit Ellie's blog at Star Trek HDQ!

So tell me, do you like both Star Trek AND Star Wars? Or do you only pledge your allegiance to one? Do you have a fave character or episode/film of Star Trek?

As always, live long and prosper ....


Saturday, August 20, 2011

Quotable Quotes From WriteOnCon

Just saw The Help last night with some of my book club girls and it was excellent. I was skeptical since the book has such a strong narrative, but they really pulled off the essence of the story in the film. The actresses all gave outstanding performances.

Now, I know not all of you write/read kid lit and may not have attended the free online writer's conference of awesome which is WriteOnCon, but there was so much great info, it doesn't matter what you write... there was something for everyone.

I highly suggest perusing the archives for all the helpful info. If you're a fiction writer, then you'll get something out of it for sure.

I want to leave you with a few of my fave quotes from various authors, agents, and editors:

 "Characters who are active about trying to better their situation, even if they're scared, rather than allowing things to happen to them, are my favorite kinds of characters." Suzie Townsend

"1)Why are you telling me this? (relevance)
2)Why are you telling me this now? (placement)
It’s helpful to ask these questions on a chapter/paragraph/line-by-line basis as you revise. It keeps a narrative tight, and helps to build tension and drama (on the page that is)....
"I don't know if it's a lesser known tip, but over-using "blinking" and "stomach turning" and such gets old. And makes me worry about a character's eyes...and gastro system when he/she does that a lot." Annette Pollert

"I really don't like it when first person is so self-conscious. i.e. i tipped my head to the side and my jaw slackened regret..." Emily Meehan

"Not every cheerleader needs to be a bitch. But also, you don't have to spend a whole novel showing us how UNlike stereotypes your characters are." Jim McCarthy

On cliches. "If you can spoonfeed me a cliche and then turn it on its head and subvert all my expectations without me feeling cheated, you're gold." Michelle Andelman

"But a lot of manuscripts want me to (love the characters), based only on the fact that the leading man (or woman) is hot. And that, friends, is one of my biggest pet peeves ….  Know what your protagonist’s internal and external conflicts are outside of any romantic possibilities, and then use the romance to enrich and complicate those conflicts…… While having an arc for the relationship is good, try to subvert what’s expected or surprise your reader in some way." Martha Mihalik

"Reliance on dialogue tags is a common prose issue I find. Reliance on them to reveal emotion where characterization should be doing the trick." Michelle Andelman

"If you don’t frequently include something out-of-the-ordinary – a scene change, a new character introduction, a plot-twist, a revelation – a terrible thing will happen: your reader will close the book.
"But the thing that will make your reader say “one more chapter” at 2 a.m. is pacing. It is your novel’s balance of description and dialogue, of back story and back-breaking action……I often went ten or more pages without a scene change, revelation, or turn of events. This error made my manuscript drag…..
"The recipe is as follows: 1) at chapter one’s ending, something big happens; 2) at chapter two’s beginning, characters react; 3) at chapter two’s middle, narrative, back-story, and dialogue combine; and 4) at chapter’s two ending, something different but equally big happens.” Tara Hudson

And those, my friends, are my fave quotes from the conference. 

There's still time to sign up for the Star Trek blogfest over at Ellie Garret's blog. It all happens on stardate 8-22-2011 12:01am. See you here ... and there ... 

 How about you? Did you attend WriteOnCon? If so, what was your fave part? If not, have you read any good books lately? Please share ...

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

The Glass Castle

Have y'all read this book?


Do yourself a favor and read this. It's a beautifully written memoir about growing up in poverty and learning to hold onto your dreams. I have to admit, I wasn't anxious to read this at first. Mainly because my TBR list is very long and I'd never heard of this book. It just so happened it was my book club's selection this month, and I downloaded a sample for my Kindle to see if I wanted to finish it sooner before later.

I could not put it down.

I wasn't expecting to be so captivated with it. I didn't even realize it was a memoir until I decided to look up the author, Jeannette Walls, and learned she's a very successful journalist in NYC. This story is about her life, growing up with very eccentric parents who, if best described as free spirits, would be a gross understatement. They despised authority and rules in just about any form, and their parenting skills were downright despicable at times. But the essence of their characters was so riveting and charismatic, it was almost excusable. Almost. Not quite.

Jeannette's parents had me cheering for them at times, and at other times, wanting to give them a good kick in the butt. I honestly couldn't decide whether I liked them or not through a lot of the story. At first, I loved them, then I loathed them, but by the end I saw them through Jeannette's eyes and was simply astounded by the gifts these parents bestowed upon their children. Gifts unattainable with money. Gifts more valuable than any luxury most parents are so eager to offer to their children.

This memoir reminded me what's most important in life. And how being easy on our children and giving them everything they ask for is denying them strength of character in the end. Now, I'm not saying we should go to the extreme Jeannette's parents went to, who often didn't provide food for days at a time which forced the kids to rummage through garbage cans for nourishment, but I am saying there's something to be learned from the kind of life Jeannette had.

I felt so connected to Jeannette's family all the way through, that I was disappointed the story was over. I want more. Coincidentally, she has a sequel out and I plan on downloading that asap. There's something so beautiful in starting a book that you have no preconceived notions about and just being reeled into it.

At the point I realized this memoir was not just about Jeannette's life, but a tribute to her father, tears streamed down my face. I was so moved that I just sat there and cried. That's how powerful this story is.

I'll be online at WriteOnCon for the next few days. If you're there, hope to see you! If not and you write kid lit, check it out! Link on the right had side here --->

Thanks so much for stopping by! Have you read The Glass Castle? What are your thoughts on it? Has there been another story that's touched you deeply? Please share ....

Friday, August 12, 2011

Giving Up

Who's giving up? You giving up? Not me, that's for darn sure. Although, there are days when I have to set everything aside and refocus. But that's not giving up. That's changing my perspective. And sometimes that's just as important as trying.

Yesterday, I finally got to see the Soul Surfer movie.


You know, the true story of Bethany Hamilton who was attacked by a shark while she was practicing for her upcoming surfing competition and lost her arm, just barely surviving? Have you seen the movie yet? Make the time for this one. Besides the fact that it's set in Hawaii (my most fave place in the world) and the scenery is gorgeous, Bethany's story will move you and touch your heart.

The obvious take-away from her story, is to never give up. That we all face obstacles and adversity and at times, we all will fail. How frustrating it must've been to just make a sandwich with only one hand, let alone trying to get up and balance on a surfboard. No one would've blamed Bethany for giving up surfing ... or even for never going into the water again after what happened.

But she did not let it stop her. And it wasn't easy. Actually, she got so frustrated that she did give up surfing. For awhile. But only to gain some perspective. You know what she did to refocus? Found a way to help others. She went to Thailand right after the tsunami of 2004 and did mission work. How's that for a fresh perspective?

Sometimes we think we have it so bad, we forget there are thousands of people around the world who would give anything to trade places with us. We tend to wallow in our failures and self-pity. Which means it's time to step back and look at what we have already accomplished.

When Bethany returned to Hawaii, she did get back into surfing... and came in 5th place in the Hawaiian regional surfing competition. She didn't win, but she was certainly the only one-armed surfer out there. She didn't give up when things got tougher than she ever imagined. She stopped and focused her attention on what she could do for others. And THAT is what gave her the strength to press on.

Perspective. It's so easy to forget to change it. There's a line in the film that says, "Sometimes we have to change the way we look at things. If we're too close to it, we can't really see it for what it is."

I think about that with my stories. And with writing in general. Hey, it's not the end of the world if that first, second, or third story doesn't pan out like we want. We just ... move on. Until we're ready to get back in the water and catch the next wave. Why? Because it's what we love. And no one, not even ourselves, is going to stand in the way of our dreams.

It's also why we need support from each other. It's why this writing community is so so important. Bethany wouldn't have the guts she has without the support of her loving family and from people around the world who saw her story and sent her letters of support and encouragement. I know we're all supposed to be here in the blogosphere to create our platforms and that jazz ... But it's more than that! We have a network of support and encouragement from each other, and that is what will see us through to our goals.

Gosh, I love you guys. *sniff sniff* LOL! (for dramatic effect) ;)

Have you seen Soul Surfer? Or know the Bethany Hamilton story? How does she inspire you? Is there someone else who inspires you? Please share ...

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

First Chapter Hooks

Hi there! Today I've got the uber sweet and charming Sheri A. Larson here today with a special post on those wretched gloriously fun first chapters! First chapters have been the bane of my existence since I started writing novels. How do you hook'em and reel'em in so they don't put the book down?? It's so important to get it just right.

Well, Sheri's here to share some great info with us on what she learned with literary agent Natalie Fischer on how to make those first chapters really sparkle.

Thanks so much for being here, Sheri! Take it away ....


Thank you so much, PK! I attended a webinar where I received a critique from Natalie Fischer, and by using myself as a guinea pig, I'm hoping to give you some insight into your personal troubled areas in opening up a story.

My opening chapter began with subtle action, encapsulated by a car accident. Although opening with an accident can sometimes be cliché, as she read she saw that I'd used it in a different way.

The scene was character driven with little focus on the accident itself and more about the innards of my lead female with a hint of what might be in store for her. I knew using an accident would trigger the fear and pain buried inside this girl--which remains hidden throughout most of the story--and would also afford me the opportunity to give the reader a glimpse into a special talent this girl possess but ignores. AND yes, a little of her past, but just enough to make the reader go
 Hmmm?

However, there was one point in the chapter where she went
 Whoa and question my reasons for not starting the chapter there.

I found it so interesting when she asked me that. Let me set it up for you: girl wakes up in backseat with unconscious friend + sees strangers just outside vehicle. At the end of the scene, the lead female (who's vision is blurred) senses someone near...too near. She hears his voice and exhales what she believes to be her last. Her world then fades to black. But the reader is privy to the fact that something is being done to her and it's not death taking her.

Originally, I hadn't included her waking, seeing someone outside the van, etc... It was simply her feeling someone near, not knowing who or what it was. This was the place Natalie felt the chapter reeled her in. I told her that I'd lengthened it because I was afraid someone would interpret the shortness of the chapter (which was only two pages double-spaced) for a prologue, which I didn't want. She assured me that it didn't read like a prologue as long as the story moved forward in chapter 2, which it does.

So here, I needed to either cut the beginning out entirely or take out some extraneous phrases and descriptions of the scene to speed up the intensity, tighten my prose, and completely hook the reader. Note: my Oasis Ladies
 had read the chapter prior and each of them had the same assessment as Natalie. Smart chickies. 

Natalie's advice was universal to all five writers who met with her.

The Breakdown
~Opening Chapter~
  1. 1. A chapter is a chapter despite the length. YOU may chose to keep it short - as I had originally - for impact. That doesn't necessarily make it a prologue. 
  2. 2. If you're going to start with a bang - start with a bang and keep it rolling.
  3. 3. Use shorter sentences to create tension and suspense.
  4. 4. Step inside the scene. Tell what you see, hear, feel, taste, and smell. Use it all.
  5. 5. The reader only knows what the writer tells them. Think carefully about what you want to reveal or keep hidden. That, right there, could be the hook which makes your story irresistible. 
  6. 6. Use adjectives and adverbs sparingly, especially in the opening scene. 
  7. 7. In any story, but especially young adult or middle grade literature, speed is a necessity. Keep your scenes and chapters moving quickly. In today's world, most readers between the ages of 11 and 19 could find an abundance of other activities to do other than finishing your book.
  8. 8. Shorter chapters work well for keeping suspense and attention spans. 
  9. 9. While editing after your first draft, be sensitive to tightening your prose by discarding extra details or repetitive details. (Yeah, we hate to chuck a beautiful sentence. But if it's not moving the character, scene, or story forward ditch it. But do create a folder for unused material. You never know when it could come in handy.)
  10. 10. This is my personal deduction: trust your instincts. I knew where I wanted to start the chapter and what I truly wanted to communicate, but was afraid to push the envelope, step out of the normal box, or take a risk. Ultimately, Be True To Yourself and someone will believe in you and your work. 
Overall and much to my delight, she was intrigued and wanted to read more. Yeah, that was way cool to hear. One day, I will share with you how I applied her advice and rewrote my opener. That will have to come after I submit it to our way-so-cool Query Kick-Around onYAlitchat. If you write kid lit and haven't checked out this amazing writing community, please do. You won't be sorry. *grins and bats lashes then chokes on her coffee*  Grace...yup, that would be me.

Please feel free to add to my list. I'd love to hear some of your experiences with first chapters.

Bio: Sheri Larsen is a freelance writer, and author of Young Adult and Middle Grade literature, and Picture Books. She’s the creator of the GRAFFITI WALL, promoting the work of authors and illustrators.  

Awesome info, Sheri! Thank you so much for sharing it! I for one can vouch for the amazing helpfulness and support of YALitChat . And, of course, Sheri runs an outstanding blog over at Writer's Ally. Be sure to check them out!
Also, my friend Donna is interviewing me on her blog here. Stop by and say hi! 
 
Thanks so much for stopping by! How do you feel about first chapters, either reading or writing them? Please share ... 

Monday, August 8, 2011

Saving Redwind


Happy Monday! And thanks for stopping by, Hope you had a relaxing, fun filled weekend, I got to see the final Harry Potter yesterday and it was wonderful. Even though I knew what would happen, I still cried when Snape died and again when all his secrets were revealed to Harry through the pensieve. So awesome.

But today I'm talking about a different middle grade character and adventure. Actually, I'm going to turn my blog over to Kris Yankee so she can share a little about her new story Saving Redwind. I love the sound of this story. You can learn more from Kris, so without further ado .... 




First, a HUGE thanks to our host, Pk, for having me on her blog. I’m Kris Yankee and I’m so excited to be here. I’d love to give you a glimpse of my new middle grade fantasy, Saving Redwind: A Wallpaper Adventure.

I thought a fun way of introducing you to my story was to interview my main character. Have you ever done that? I hadn’t until I came across a really cool blogfest this past June where authors were using Jeannie Campbell’s The Character Therapist (http://charactertherapist.com/) questions to interview their main character. There were 3 questions that the main character needed to answer. They were:
  1. What is your greatest fear?
  2. What is your biggest accomplishment?
  3. What is your biggest regret?

So, let’s get this interview started, shall we? I'd like to introduce Nick Stevenson. Nick's eleven and is the main character of Saving Redwind. Please give him a round of applause!

Nick S.: Thanks, Mrs. Yankee! I'm glad to be here. So, you've got some questions for me? Hope they aren't too hard. This is summer, and I didn't expect a test.

Kris Y.: I'm sure you'll do fine. The first question is, what is your greatest fear?

Nick: That's easy; SPBMs for sure. Or, maybe it was the Dream Birds. No...wait!! (pointing in the air) It had to be Sartung! That dude was NASTY.

Kris: Whoa, slow down. You need to explain yourself. Not everyone knows what SPBMs, Dream Birds, or who Sartung is at this point.

Nick: Why not? (scrunching his nose up and looking quite distraught)

Kris: Well, they may not have read the book yet. Just tell us about  your fears.

Nick: They are missin' out for sure. Anyway, SPBM stands for Stay Puft Boulder Men. They are these huge boulder dudes who live in Keyra Forest. They pretty much like to crush everything that comes in their path. They’re taller than a couple of hockey sticks put end to end, and when they walk the whole ground shakes. (shaking himself). They really scared me when I went over to Redwind the first time.

Kris: Redwind? Where’s that?

Nick: In my bedroom wallpaper (giving Kris a “duh” look). Those dudes are scarier than my coach when we’re losing a game.

Kris: Sounds frightening.

Nick: They were, but in the end not so much. But you have to read the book to know why.

Kris: All right, now what about these Dream Birds. I've never heard of those.

Nick: Yeah, they don't exist here in our world. Or at least I don't think they do. (looking over shoulders). Anyway, these really pretty blue and yellow birds look innocent enough until they land on your shoulder.

Kris: What happens then?

Nick: They start singing their mesmerizing tune while picking you up. It's crazy because these birds look like they weigh five pounds, but they can actually grab onto your shirt and carry like almost a hundred pounds! As their song gets stuck in your head, you'll start thinking about one of the best times in your life. You may even smell something - like I smelled chocolate chip cookies! I totally thought my mom was baking. (nodding with wide eyes). But she wasn't! She wasn't even there.

Kris: Then what happens?

Nick: It didn't exactly happen to me, but my friend Jacob told me all about it. When the Dream Birds were near me, I started thinking about this one time I spent with my dad. He was home, which isn't very much, and we were doing something with his new camera. I was really happy because he was there. (smiles). But Jacob told me that if I kept on thinking while the Dream Birds were touching me, they'd steal that memory from me. And, man, I don't have a lot of those with my dad since he's always gone. I swatted those darn birds off of me as hard as I could and ran away!

Kris: Sounds scary! What about this Sartung person?

Nick: (shudders) Sartung is the ultimate creepy idiot of Redwind. He wants to rule the land and be king or something. He's a wizard, so he's way crafty. His powers are super strong and he can trick almost the entire nation. He's mean and scary and all-around a bad dude. He gets the SPBMs to work for him, so you know that's a bad combination.

Kris: Wow! You're lucky you survived. Now, what about your greatest accomplishment?

Nick: Really? (cocky stance) Isn't it in the title?

Kris: I suppose...let's go to the final question-what's your greatest regret?

Nick: Hmmm...this is a hard one. I mean, I don't regret that I helped my new friends. But I do feel bad that I didn't tell my mom where I was going each time I flew through the wallpaper. And, I was sorta mean to my little sister. But that's what they're here for, right? (Kris shakes "no"). Well, that's probably it.

Kris: Thanks for stopping by, Nick.

Here’s the back cover summary and praise:

All eleven-year-old Nick Stevenson wants is an adventure like his dad’s. Oh, and for the creepy ceiling in his new bedroom to stop storming and spinning. When he’s asked to help save a world that exists inside his bedroom’s wallpaper, Nick thinks he’s found his very own adventure. But he has no idea it will involve talking rocks, dream-stealing birds, and becoming friends with wizards. Can Nick save Redwind and his new friends before his mom calls him home for hockey practice?
Praise for Saving Redwind:

"Great characters, tons of action and adventure, and a wallpaper world full of vivid, amazing elements sure to captivate readers of all ages make Kris Yankee's debut a winner. Saving Redwind, book one in the Wallpaper Adventure Series, is not one to be missed."
~Kari Lee Townsend, author of The Samantha Granger Experiment

If you'd like to read more about Nick, SPBMs, Dream Birds, and Sartung, please check out Saving Redwind: A Wallpaper Adventure at Amazon or CreateSpace. You can me online at www.krisyankee.com,http://adventuresthatscore.blogspot.com , and www.facebook.com/booksbykrisyankee .

Thanks again, Pk, for letting me hijack – I mean, guest blog here at your site!

No problem, Kris! Great to have you here! What a cute interview, too! Those three questions are questions I always ask of my main characters before I start writing a draft. I love the sound of Redwind, and the fact he goes through his wallpaper is brilliant. I'd like to offer one random commenter a copy of Saving Redwind... so be sure to leave your email below.

Thanks for stopping by here today! What do you think of Saving Redwind? Or how about character questions? Do you interview yours also? Please share ....

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Get In the Loop ...

If you're a kid lit writer like me and didn't have time or funds to go to the SCBWI conference in LA this weekend, all is not lost. Just check out the official blog for hourly posts on guest speakers and events. I've been perusing it all day.

If you don't write kid lit, it's still worth a look. With guest speakers like Judy Blume, Henry Winkler, and Libba Bray, you can't go wrong with reading what they have to say.

Here's the link:


Enjoy! Please join me on Monday when I have a special guest. Thanks! And Happy weekend!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Stress Relief


I've been having a lot of these days lately. Could be the fact I'm in between houses and everything's in boxes. Or it could be because I start work at 4am five days a week and deal with disgruntled airline passengers. Or maybe it's because my kids are out of school and require my undivided attention til the sun goes down. Or maybe, just maybe, it's the cumulative of all of the above... plus the fact I should be hearing back on a full request any day now.

Who knows!

But I do know stress is an ugly monster who can get a hold of your nerves and stretch them over an invisible rack and go crank! crank! crank!

ARGH!

lol. Okay, now I'm scaring you. Sorry 'bout that. *insert coy smile*

So how do we keep our stress levels in check?? I'm sure everyone has their own remedies. At least, I hope you do. Because stress is bad... very bad ...

Know what I use? Humor. I seek out funny media to make me laugh as much as possible. Or else I will spontaneously combust and brains, blood, and guts will be everywhere. Ewww. Lately, my source of stress relief has been The Far Side comics by Gary Larson. Remember him?

Of course, he has a website here, where I just learned of some cartoon shorts on DVD and simply must have. This guy just makes me laugh out loud. I have four volumes of his cartoons, and throughout the years I've perused them again and again. In my twenties, I used to visit the neighborhood pub alone with one of these books in hand and laugh myself silly so that everyone around me had to know what I was reading. Yep, I'm one of those comfortable-to-be-alone-with-a-book kind of girls. It's been awhile since I've read The Far Side books, and last week, during my uber stress overload, I sought them out and buried myself in the first volume until I was chuckling like a kid at Christmas. Gosh darn I love that guy.

Seriously, I don't know what it is exactly--maybe his unique way of seeing the world through animal's eyes or even through the eyes of fantasy creatures--or maybe the subtle, but formal wording paired with a picture of a nerd with a cowlick and crooked glasses, but it just tickles me silly. Not that I laugh at every single cartoon, but the ones that do make me laugh, just brighten my day all around. It's like crack--I want more and more and more. (at least, that's what I hear anyway)

So I'll leave you with a few to start your day off right ....







You can Google Gary Larson and get a slew of his cartoons for free right off the internet. Makes for a nice break to an otherwise busy day.

BTW I totally forgot to mention the last two random winners of books from my guest author posts. Congrats to Florence Fois who won a copy of Karen Walker's Following the Whispers and Old Kitty who won a copy of Liz Fichera's Craving Perfect.  Happy to support both these talented authors. Congrats, ladies!

Tell me, my friends, how do you deal with stress? Are you a sucker for The Far Side like me? Please share ...

Monday, August 1, 2011

Novel Films Blogfest

HAPPY AUGUST!!


Updated Wednesday, August 3 below ...

Thanks to Madeleine for this fun blogfest! The idea is to list as many books as we can in which  we've seen the film too. If I love the book, I always of course have to see the movie. I don't always love the movie, but it's still fun to see the images come to life on the big screen.

There are even a few stories I prefer the film version over the book. Rare, but there you have it.

These are the stories that come to mind when I think of books and movies I've both read and seen. I'm sure I'm missing some, but anyway ... check out mine, then hop over to blogfest HDQ at Scribble and Edit  for the rest! :)

Books I've Read Before Seeing the Film:
Pride & Prejudice
The Da Vinci Code
Angels & Demons
Little Women
Out of Africa
Red Dragon
Hannibal
Harry Potter 4, 5, 6, 7
Gone with the Wind
Twilight saga 1-4
Vanity Fair
Day of the Jackal
The Notebook
Message in a Bottle
Lord of the Rings
Alice in Wonderland
The Exorcist
Pet Sematary
It
The Narnia Chronicles
The Kite Runner

Films I've Seen Before Reading the Book:
The Counte of Monte Cristo
Jaws
Stardust
Silence of the Lambs
Harry Potter 1, 2, 3
Star Wars
Dracula
The Hobbit (animated version)
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Midnight in the Garden of Good & Evil

UPDATE: (Wednesday) My addition to this post for today, is to let you know which film versions I loved and, surprise surprise .... which films I actually liked BETTER than the books!
My fave film adaptations are: LOTR, Harry Potters, Out of Africa, The Notebook, The Count of Monte Cristo (most recent), Stardust, Jaws, Vanity Fair, Dracula (Coppola version)


And the films I like BETTER than the actual book version:
Jaws: I love this movie. It's one of my all time faves. The ending in the film version is much more satisfying to me.
Count of Monte Cristo: Also the ending in the recent film version was more satisfying to me. However, it remains one of my fave stories of all time.
Dracula: I love how the Coppola version added in a romantic element between Dracula and Mina. The book doesn't have this at all. And while I adored the book for many reasons, I really missed that deep forbidden love between the Count and Mina.
Stardust: I LOVE this film. Could be my fave ever. I was so excited to read it. All I can say, is that it compared very little to the film. It's a Neil Gaiman story, and props to him for dreaming it up... but sorry to say the film version, to me, is WAY better. 

That's the best my jostled brain can come up with after our transitional house move to some family's home for 30 days, until our new home is ready, in which we move everything AGAIN!. Talk about brain fried ... mine is toast right about now.

But thanks so much for stopping by! I'd love to hear some of your fave book/film combos you've enjoyed! Please share ....