Sunday, March 27, 2011

Book Avalanche - What I'm Reading

While I have a second cup of coffee and contemplate putting the clothes in the dryer, I thought I'd take a minute to blog about the books I'm currently reading. One I'm technically rereading, but that counts too, right?

First things first, I'm wrapping up the vampire novella today. I hung with it until about three in the morning, but I couldn't keep my eyes open to finish the job. Today I need to round out the ending, then I can stick a fork in it. And print it, too, because I prefer to edit on hard copy.

I'm giving myself a full month to whip this puppy into shape before sending it on to my publisher. I want to reread Wicked Temptation and fact check a few story details before getting down to business. No, I don't have a story bible based on my own work, so spank me already. :P Whatever I find, I can't dally over this project too long. Deadlines aside, I have a horror-romance to shape up after I get this contracted piece out of the way. And there are other projects simmering on the back burner. Whew!

But let's get back to the whole point of the post - what I'm reading. Actually, a lot of craft books lately. Just when I think I'm going to put aside the craft books for a while, I find another I need to read. A few nights ago on twitter, Jessa Slade pointed me toward a craft book that looks promising, so now I have another one coming from Amazon. I've never heard of it before, but it has some fantastic reviews, and seems like just the sort of inspiring craft book I like to get my mitts on. Yep, I'm very interested to see what it's about. It's called Story by Robert McKee. I'll post something about it once the book is here and I've had a chance to read it. Just for the sake of saying so, and to justify my addiction, you can never have too many craft books. ;o)

Other books on my immediate reading list... a couple of YA books the agent recommended to me at conference. I can see why she recommended them. If my I were to rework the one of my stories, it would fit with those books on the shelf. Kind of strange to think about it that way, but there it is. I finished the first book, and will be on book two once I whittle the stack down a bit. The hot list YA books on my stack are without a doubt, Amanda Hocking's books. I recently picked up a copy of My Blood Approves, so that's pretty high on my TBR list right now. You can find her Amazon page here with most, if not all, of her available books. She recently signed a four book, seven figure deal, people. There's stuff to be learned in all this.

Now for the two books that have me turning pages this week:

Scene and Structure by Jack M. Bickham

I've read this book before and thought, huh, what?  It's a bit wordy, but once you cut through the verbiage to the core lesson, it becomes apparent that this really is need to know stuff.

If I had to grade this one for practical use, I'd say this is probably for advanced fiction writers only. There is a lot to digest in this one, and you may find yourself reading it twice. Or as in my case, three times, before the info starts to stick.

I have been told there are other, easier to understand, books that tackle the subject of scenes and sequels (no, I'm not talking about awful franchise movies!) but I can't think of a single definitive source at the moment. Maybe Techniques of the Selling Writer?

Anyway, third time's the charm. I've had several Ah-ha! moments reading this one over the past few days.

I'm not entirely about craft books, though. Believe it or not, I do read for fun!  And for the nay sayers... NO, I am not tired of reading about vampires yet. ;o)

American Vampire by Jennifer Armintrout

I saw this title on the shelf and had to give it a look. The blurb hooked me. Secret deadly critter in the woods, locals with pitchforks demanding a sacrifice, hot American vampire. Um, yeah, I'll read that.

I read the first few pages while standing in the book aisle, and it totally cracked me up. Yeah, I had to get this one, and so far I haven't been disappointed.

That's it for now. The laundry is calling. If you managed to make it through to the bottom of this post (hehe, yeah, it turned out longer than I planned), tell me ....what books are you currently reading?


  1. Hm...I read Amanda Hocking's first book. I'll be interested to hear your thoughts. Frankly I wasn't impressed but I live by my brother's mantra - you are not allowed to speak badly nor make fun of anyone who makes more money than you :D So that's my 2 cents. Obviously she's done something right - I just wish I could figure out what it was...

  2. Made it through the end of your post - took 2 tries LOL. What am I reading? Let's see
    Craft books - Debra Dixon, GMC; Ingermanson & Economy, Fiction Writing for Dummies; (these came highly recommended ;) )

    Fun Books -Kim Harrison, Black Magic Sanction

    School books- Nikolai, Bazley & Jones, Intermediate Accounting.

    Then I'm prereading Alyson Noel, Dark Flame; (I preread my daughter's books - make sure they are suitable for her little eyes).

    Then on my to be read books Adrian Phoenix, Etched in Bone; Swain, Techniques of the Selling Writer, and Browne, Self Editing for the Fiction Writer. There's more, but that's enough for now :D

  3. I haven't read the book yet, Linnea. I know Amanda H said she had some editing issues and such, so I'm going into it expecting so problems. She did however touch a nerve with her readers somewhere, and I'm hoping to find whatever that is. I'll let you know what I think once I read it. I'll probably do a review about it on Goodreads. Are you on Goodreads?

  4. BTW, I'm intimidated by your Intermediate Accounting book. Math - yikes! ^_^

  5. Not on Goodreads. Went there - saw my book, it has no ratings :( Should I do something there? All so new So much to do, so little time....

  6. Goodreads is more about connecting over what you're reading. Don't worry about it; it's all good. ^_^


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