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Friday, April 12, 2013

Friday Five

1. What I'm reading: I'm reading a book by one of my favorite authors right now. I won't mention who it is, or what the book is, because my compassionate side won't let me say things publicly that could hurt another writer. But this book took me 161 pages to get into. ONE HUNDRED AND SIXTY ONE! I remember when I'd give a book a chapter or two to hook me, if not, I'd move on to something else. Now I generally give a book about a hundred pages (it's the compassion thing again, because I know how much it would hurt if someone put my book down after only a chapter or two). Because this was one of my favorite authors, though, I kept pushing on. And finally it DID start to hook me. But 161 pages in? It does make me wonder if lots of other people will give up on this book. How many pages do you usually give a book before moving on?

2. What ELSE I'm reading: The bright side is, I'm also reading a book that I really love. I finished reading IT'S NOT JUST GYMNASTICS; IT'S LIFE by Lance Ringnald a week or two ago. I'm supposed to be starting on a novel study with my son for homeschool, but I admit, I was not feeling motivated at all about that. I just don't enjoy most of the books that are at my son's reading level, so I find myself tuning out when he's reading to me. So I decided to use this book by Lance Ringnald instead (I wanted to read it with my son anyway). It's not a novel, and it's a bit above his reading level, but I'm helping him with the reading and making up my own rudimentary study guide to go with it. It's making the whole process of schooling him enjoyable for me (and for him!) so that has been my bright spot of reading lately. It has also sparked some great conversations about the emotional turmoil of competition, as my son competes in judo tournaments regularly and definitely has his ups and downs about it.

3. Speaking of good books: I mentioned in an earlier post that my goal this year was not to read a plethora of books, but instead to try and find 12 books I really love this year. To that end, I decided to start a list of these 12 awesome books in the sidebar. If you ever have something to recommend to me (really excellent amazing books only, please!) I'd love to hear about them!

4. What I'm writing: I got pretty sidetracked with finishing up the audiobook for LOSING FAITH, but now I'm finally back to revising my work in progress, MAKING MIRACLES. The title is still not something I totally love, but I'm really having fun with this book. Here is the logline (another pitch I wrote myself--I do think I'm getting better at this!) Wild-child Delaney Peters tries to impress her friends by attempting to punk a religious tent meeting, but instead starts experiencing strange and increasingly embarrassing miracles.

As I've been getting beta feedback on this one, it seems like readers' main struggles in this book is over the miracles I've chosen to show. They either want them to be bigger and wilder miracles, or some readers want them to be tamer and something they would have an easier time believing. Would you rather read about big, wild miracles that may stretch your suspension of disbelief, or miracles that would kind of fall into the background because you have no problem believing them? This is the question I'm struggling with right now. I'll be looking for more beta readers for this one soon if anyone is interested.

5. We have out of town friends visiting at the moment, which usually means two things for us: Anton's Pasta and Theatresports--two of our favorite things. If you ever visit Vancouver, Anton's is a must (you can recognize it by the lineup down the street). Hoping for some sunshine or our Arizonian friends are going to freeze!

What are you up to this weekend?


  1. I'll give a book about 50 pages. I used to push through books that weren't working for me, but not any more...the TBR pile is just too high. (But for a fave author? I'd probably give it a fair bit more, hoping desperately to fall in love with it soon.)

    Funny about the miracles--people wanting either wilder or tamer. I wonder if the different reactions are mainly due to the readers' own past experiences and/or beliefs. Personally, I'm pretty open to the possibility of miracles, and yet I also maybe think most miracles are of the less-dramatic kind, or even the might-be-missed-if-you're-not-looking kind. Not sure how (or if) that affected my critiquing. ;)

    BTW, the log-line really works for me -- definitely something that would grab my interest!

    1. I WISH I could give up after 50 pages, Shari! (This is why my TBR pile is just way out of hand!)

      I agree, the miracle thing is probably very much based on people's personal beliefs. That's why I think I will need lots of beta readers from all walks of life on this one. I'm glad you like the logline! I like it too.

  2. I like the idea of the 12 awesome books on the sidebar. I loved #1 and #2--must check out #3 and #4. I'm pretty patient when I'm reading, though that's changed lately. I've been closing books after two chapters if I'm bored. I've been buying stuff for myself this weekend. Finally got a bed. Yay! I also got a stack of books from the library. Would you believe I haven't been reading for the past month? Yikes! Hope your Zonies have a good time. The warm weather will be waiting when they return here. ^_^

    1. Gosh, what were you sleeping on? I hope you'll help me with suggestions for my list!

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  4. I think I read about 50 pages too. More if I usually like the author's work.
    I'd vote for bigger miracles but I agree with Shari, you'll get very subjective answers for this.