Sunday, March 1, 2015

Brushing With Fame

Today I went to the Logan Car Show.  Yep, I thought to go to see if my cousin's gorgeous Mustang was going to be in it. 

But I couldn't find it.

Instead, I came across the most delightfully creepy and beautiful car ever to be written about... yes... I came across a 1958 Plymouth Fury.

It was red.

It was gorgeous.

It was creepy.

And yes... I squealed: 'Oh my God! Christine!' to the people sitting by her; at which they laughed and said the owner probably didn't call her that, but yeah, I had the right car.  He wasn't there at the time I showed up first off to talk to about her.

But he was by the time I was leaving.  And we got talking about Stephen King books and how they were turned into movies; and how a lot of his books weren't very good movies.  Some of the people sitting there asked why, I told them that once a writer signs over their books to have them made into a movie, the whole screen-writing part of it and directing part of it is out of their hands.  Unless they're asked to come in and help with creative issues (which sometimes happens) the books and movies are totally different from each other due to the way they're portrayed.  

I did hear some news though:  they are thinking of remaking 'Christine'.  However, it's going to be different from the 1983 disaster of a movie that was made.  Not so many cars are going to be destroyed due to the technology that's around now.  They will be able to have only a couple of cars they'll use and better ways of making things happen.

The best part of today was that I got to sit in the Plymouth Fury!  What a car!  Autumn Red, original in every way, beautiful bench seats, automatic transmission and ... every bit the way I thought it would be.  However, the Christine in the movie had a few things that this Plymouth Fury didn't.  Which makes me wonder:  exactly which year did they use in the movie?  They said it was a 1958 Plymouth Fury, but they showed a 4-door car, with locks on the tops of the doors when in 1958, they only made 2-door cars and there were no locks on the tops of the doors... really strange.  But I guess that's what made the movie so different from the book, and what made the whole mystique of the car to the world and fans who want to get close to those particular cars.

So, have you ever 'met' a car (or anything else for that matter) which has made it into a book which has been playing on your mind as a character?  Was it worth it when you did finally meet that Darlek, Sith Lord, Vulcan or Luke Skywalker or even that particular piece of city you've seen in 'The Da Vinci Code'?  For me, meeting this car today was one of my biggest dreams come true.  As I said, it was creepy and beautiful at the same time... and the one thing I didn't call her - and would never call her - was a rustbucket... why would I?  A 1958 Plymouth Fury is just a thing of beauty, don't you think; especially a red one?  Until my next post, happy reading.

And here's a collage of the day!

Logan Car Show 2015

Friday, February 27, 2015

A Busy Week of New Reading Material

I've had a busy week, and it's been filled with my craft group, reading and organising myself to get my butt into this year... yep, it's February already and this year isn't slowing down!

But on Monday, I thought to check my mail - seeing the rain had eased - and my PO Box was filled to the brim!  I also had to pull out a blue pick-up card!  Yay!  There was a parcel to get from inside the post office!  Anyway, once I did that, I found my curiosity got the better of me and I opened it right there in the place and found a brand new copy of 'Eucalyptus' by Murray Bail.  This came all the way from Scotland for the Australia Day Sweepstakes on Bookcrossing.  Well, I'd never heard of this author or the book, so this was a first for me.  And I'm looking forward to reading it too!
Then, while I was at my craft group, Nola (a lady who sits across from me at the tables) brought in some books she didn't want and showed them to us ladies before putting them up for grabs on the show and tell tables, where they're sold for $1.00 each.  I found a great copy of 'Hour's The Limit: Great Food In Less Than 60 Minutes' by 'Fast Ed' Halmagyi.  What a cookbook!  The pictures look great, the recipes look wonderful, and I've yet to try out anything in it, but it's all delicious sounding and I think I'll have to have a try of one of the pastas first... I'm not sure yet.

Also in the mail on Monday came my March issue of 'Good Reading' Magazine.  It's a bumper copy with all sorts of great articles about books, authors, and anything about the written word.  And you all know what I'm like about that!  Yep, obsessed!  Well, how was your week?  Filled with reading material like mine, or are you happily reading along like last week... please do keep us updated.  Until my next post, happy reading!

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Writing Work This Wet Weekend

This weekend just gone has been one of the wettest around for some years; and I got a lot done!  

As I mentioned in the last post, I wanted to get some reading done - and I did.  I read a few chapters of 'Wizard and Glass' book 4 of 'The Dark Tower' Series by Stephen King.  That was on Friday night, but then on Thursday night, I read a few chapters of 'Dandelion Wine' by Ray Bradbury.  These books are total opposites, but both writers are absolute genius' as what they do in this world.

On Saturday, I cleaned out my lounge room.  It was great to be able to move around the house again, throw out a rubbish bag and fill up the Donation Box completely.  But then, it was also great to put things away too, check the water in the piano (yep, they need it to keep from warping) and I cleaned the coffee table and now, all I have to do is clear the dining table and the place look sweet!

But then, I stumbled upon two recipe books I'm working with.  They're lovely books.  One book is one Mum bought me where I write down recipes I've created or gotten from people and they are my favourites and the other is one I bought from my craft group and it's more professional-looking.  The second one is cut up into sections where you write your recipes down and there's little pockets where you can slot recipes cards that are loose and sitting around - a very nice book in all, something I'd definitely use!  So, I'm working with these two books, off and on.  Honestly, I really need to get them finished up and put away, they are getting in the way.
Then, I have a recipe book on my tablet.  This one is one where I've copied out my recipes from the first book onto an app I scored from the 'Play Store' for free.  It's great to have this on my tablet because I can take it anywhere and I have a recipe book at my fingertips without having to be hooked up on the internet - not a bad deal, right?  Well, I have to update that 'invisible' recipe book soon as well so I'm not without the needed recipe when I'm on holidays.  You never know when I'll need a recipe or two and if it's not on my table, it'll be at home.  Just what did we ever do without technology?

Well, I hope you survived the weekend, like I did.  I heard that overseas in the USA, there was a huge ice storm and everyone there was trapped at home as much as we were.  So, what did you get up to during that time? Until my next post, happy reading.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

A Weekend of Wet Horrible Weather

Okay, here in Queensland, we are famous for our tropical cyclones - and their names can be really weird too.  Some are really violent, whereas others are just filled with rain, rain and more rain.  However, when they hit up north, the rain depression they turn into as they travel down the coastline often travel towards Brisbane and the border of New South Wales and we get some good falls of rain.

This time, we got Cyclone Marcia.  Yep, we got a Brady Bunch sister heading towards Bundaberg and Gladstone, and landfall is early tomorrow morning.  Now, we've had this kind of thing before, where it's just poured rain for a few days with lots of wind; and it's really unsettling for everyone.  But it does keep us indoors a lot over a weekend - which this one is going to do.

So, this weekend is going to be a good few days of cleaning out, cleaning up and a lot of reading... mainly the latter because I know that sleep will not be on the agenda.  This kind of weather really freaks me out.  It's not the rain, it's the wind that does it to me.  So, I'll be reading a lot of Stephen King (the 'Dark Tower Series' will be getting a look into) and probably some Ray Bradbury (yep, I'll be reading some of his 'Dandelion Wine' late at night if I can't sleep while the wind howls outside my window).  Otherwise, during the day, I'll be working on cleaning out my house more permanently.  Honestly, there's nothing else to do while it's raining... well, there's painting, but I mainly do that at night.

Well, you know what I'll be up to this weekend during the horrible weather.  What are you doing when the weather turns bad?  Until my next post, happy reading.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

The Blank Page

Today, I opened up a new post here to see what I would write.  

There was nothing that came to mind immediately, and I worried about this a little. 

Sometimes this happens to me as a writer; and it's not a good thing to happen.  However, you have to remember, I worked on two books last year, and have been working on flash fictions throughout the year last year as well.  For this I'm really happy, so for now, I think a bit of imaginative silence is good... well, until the next great idea shows up!

I'm not reading very much either.  But I'm not worried about that either, I think it's just my mind taking a break from the written word for a while, until it wants to take it all in later on.

Do you do this?  Stop and slow down from reading or writing for a while, just to see the world around you for what it is?  If so, what do you get up to?  For me, it's delving into painting and gardening and cleaning out my house.  I know all of those are the complete opposite of writing, but it's probably best if they are.  Until my next post, happy reading.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Reading For Dumbies

I've got a great collection of books... I mean, there's some intellectual stuff here in my home office.  Some of the books I have here, I had to wait until the right time to read them.  I mean, I received them years ago, but didn't understand them until around a year or so ago, when I had read other things to catch up with the one I wanted to read (does that make sense?).

Then, once in a while I go out and get myself a 'dumbie' book.  It was 'SeinLanguage' by Jerry Seinfeld.  Now, I have absolutely zero interest in this guy - I actually don't like him as a comedian - and yet I picked up his book yesterday at my craft group and brought it home to read.

Okay... it's more than once in a while; it's a few times a year.  These are books which are pinch easy to read by people I have nearly next to no interest in; and they didn't sell any of their books here in Australia - or I'd never heard of the title here.  But I come across the book and pick it up anyway because it's an easy read.

My question to you today is:  have you ever done this, just to read something?  If so, whose book was most memorable?  Was it because you found out something weird about them, or was it something you already knew about them that nobody else did?  Do you remember the title and is it in print anymore?  If not, do you still have it hiding in your bookcase anymore?  Well, okay, that's more than one question - I'm just being nosy today.  Well, until my next post, happy reading!

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

The Month For Reading

February is the month for reading, getting into reading and loving reading.  I think it's a great idea to have a month dedicated to reading - especially if it's February, as it's as though we can have an affair with a book we're getting into.

We spend time with it.

We enjoy it...

We sneak off and ignore family members to be with it...

Yeah... sounds like an affair to me.

But I've been doing this for most of my life, so it's pretty much what I do all the time.  Yep, nothing out of the ordinary for me!

So, do tell, what are you delving into this month, this week... today?  I'd love to know.  Just leave your reads in the comment section below, and until my next post... happy reading!

Thursday, January 29, 2015

The World Loses Colleen McCullough

I am saddened to report that Colleen McCullough has passed away just last night in the hospital on Norfolk Island.  

Colleen was a very well-educated woman who worked as a neuro-scientist in the Royal North Shore Hospital and then worked as in a researching role at Yale Medical School for a decade.

It was in the United States she found her passion for writing and wrote her first book, 'Tim', which was soon followed by 'The Thorn Birds'.  Both these books were turned into screenplays.  'The Thorn Birds' was turned in a popular television series, while 'Tim' was turned into a movie in 1979 where Mel Gibson stared in one of his first movie roles.

After 'The Thorn Birds' success, Colleen and her husband moved to Norfolk Island permanently and have lived there since.
While living there, she has produced great books such as 'An Indecent Obsession' and the seven-book historical series 'Master of Rome', which was acclaimed by politician such as Bob Carr, Henry Kissinger and Newt Gingrich.

Colleen published her last works, 'Bittersweet', in 2013.

She has been living with poor health in recent years, losing her sight and suffering from crippling arthritis.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Ray Bradbury's House Demolition

I read recently that the famed - and one of my favourite writers of all time - Ray Bradbury's house has been demolished.  It was bought last year for over one million dollars and the person who bought his lovely yellow home had demolished it over the last few days.

I'm astonished that the fan of the writer didn't really care about what happened to the house, he just wanted to change the whole thing.  He said wasn't anything he expected and so went ahead and changed it... not expecting any backlash.

However, the people of the neighbourhood were astonished to find Ray's former home being pulled down was the most dreadful thing to have happened; as the writer lived in the house for over 50 years.

Find the whole article below.

The Rest of Ray Bradbury's Home

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Rainy Day Reading

I love reading on a rainy day.  The skies are grey, the gutters fill up with rain water, trickling down to the gardens, storm water drains and underground where it all travels out to streams, rivers and finally out to the sea... 

...but no matter where you are, you can sit and watch it from your cosy little spot while you curl up with a good book - or a movie, whichever is your poison.

For me, it's normally a book.  I love to either read a book or write one.  And it's something else completely different to write a book than to read the completed object.  You see, when you're writing a book, you're continuously watching out for your characters before your reader is - or your First Reader anyway.  Then, your first time writing a chapter, you throw out all the rules and it's a matter of making sure everything sounds great, looks like fun and the story is 'vomited' onto the page as fast as possible - then, once you've done that, you save it, leave it alone for a few days and come back to it.  It's then you look at what you've written and wonder what the hell you were thinking!  

Or better still, say quietly: 'This isn't bad shit.'

But in all honesty, it's the first thing you're muttering to yourself.

I do enjoy writing a book more than writing a book though.  I think it's the mechanics of it that I enjoy as it's just wonderful to get into it all, instead of reading a book, knowing there may be a part of it that will piss you off grammatically.

And believe me there are such books.

So, on wet old days, which do you love?  Curling up with a book to read?  Or curling up with a book to write and edit?  For me, it's the one to write most of the time.  Other times, I'll jump in and read a book, and have the joy of letting my brain relax just enough to enjoy a book, but then, I'll end up proofreading it as well.  Until my next post, happy reading!

Friday, January 16, 2015

Which Ones Have You Read?

Occasionally, a list of books come out which makes you think about how many books you really have gotten in and read... and you wonder why you haven't read the ones mentioned on this list or another.

Now, I'm wondering why I haven't read these ones, seeing I have good number of them in my bookcases.

100 Books Everyone Should Read In Their Lifetime

So, the question is posed... how many have you read, and how many have you got in your possession and have yet to read?  Until my next post, happy reading.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

'Death by Didgeridoo' by Barbara Venkataramann

Spike from 'The Screaming Zombies' is dead.  He was found in the studio of his music store of the same name by one of his students, Adam, who is being charged for his murder.

But are the police right in doing this?  

Jamie Quinn - a lawyer, and Adam's cousin - thinks they're wrong.  The main reason is that Adam couldn't possibly have done it.  Just because he was at the scene of the crime saying he was wrong and he had done it, didn't necessarily mean it was the murder he was talking about. 

Jamie's cousin is Autistic and he's a talented musician who loved Spike; they were the best of friends and Jamie knew this.  She just has to prove this the police before it went to court.

So, she hires a private detective:  Duke Broussard.  And just as his name sounds, he's from The South.  He's a charmingly sweet, womanising kinda man, but he also knows how to get the right kind of information about Spike and the rest of the band he played with - even if none of them got along offstage, and Spike himself wasn't very well-like by anyone around him.

Duke digs up a lot of things about Spike that could get him harmed or killed by just about anyone in the band - along with their spouses - but he is confident that Adam is the least of their worries, and he can prove that too; but can they find the murderer in time and catch them before this whole thing goes to court and Jamie's cousin is charged for a crime he didn't commit?

This is the first of the series of books written by Barbara Venkataramann.  Even though it's a good, old love-triangle murder, with all the usual twists and turns, those twists and turns weren't in the places I expected them to be; and this is a good thing.

I also didn't know something about America:  there are two Hollywood's.  There's the one we all know well on the west coast in L.A.  And there's one in Miami, just north of Miami Beach where Hollywood has built an entire suburb to the movie industry so movies can be made on the east coast as well!  This is something I had to Google; it totally threw me a total curve ball in the first three chapters... otherwise, after I knew this, it was fine.  I jumped straight in and listened to the rest of the book!  I'd love to read more books along this line.  

However, the characters do need more fleshing out.  I'd love to know more about their backgrounds, their lives, what they look like more, what their houses look like and family histories better.  But this, I trust, will be filled out more as the series goes on.  Well worth a read or a listen to on audio-book through Audible.  Until my next post, happy reading!