Friday, April 29, 2011

Fame Famine on Friday

Since it's Friday, I couldn't escape people singing Rebecca Black's horrendous song "Friday" at school, which brings up an interesting point: Is it worth being well-known if nobody likes you? Apparently Mark David Chapman thought so; in murdering the beloved John Lennon, he sought to inherit John's fame. He gained infamy. Personally, I'd rather stay unknown than be frowned on by the universe.

It seems that some are so starved for a little attention, they'll draw it in a negative fashion. To them, negative attention is better than no attention. I disagree.

In other news, I may start noveling again soon. I have an outline for Creative Writing, and I plan to use it soon. Just need to edit this short story.... I'm apparently going to California this summer instead of uber-expensive Europe, which will be nice. Never been that far west before. Right now I'm considering fiction editing as a career. It looks good so far, but the screenwriting thing, according to Alex Sokoloff's blog, requires one to live in  Los Angeles. It might be a good town, but I don't know if I want to move there. Who knows? Only time will tell. I've been watching Doctor Who a bit more lately, and recently heard from a friend that the old seasons can be found at my local mall. Yes!! I'll have to look into that.

Time to wrap up now.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Florida Again

Currently I am in Florida visiting some old friends--Pam and her lot; I believe I've mentioned them before. I got up at nine-ish yesterday morning and arrived at the airport around eleven. I had not seen any of them in over two years, and there was much rejoicing. We went walking on the beach and out to eat, and I visited their two houses--both modestly sized (in a good way, of course) and full of books and such. They're really nice places, and I'll miss them in a week. But for now, I type this on their desktop Mac (is this my first time using one?), shortly before retiring. Most likely it will be a short post, but I must note that the climate is perfect for me: Not too hot or cool, but just right. It seems that a lot of people want to live in a big mansion; I do not wish for that, as a smallish one would do for me. That way I could afford a lot more other things, like books and stuff. Anyhow, we're going to this place in a bit, so I'll blog later.


Saturday, April 9, 2011

Three Library-Related Things

Ah, I keep meaning to post this, along with my review for The Poison Eaters and Other Stories, but stuff keeps happening. Sorry!

Anyhow, I've been checking out a lot of library audio books as of late. I realized it is more convenient at times to check one out (for free, as opposed to bookstores) and put it on iTunes for later listening. I might have mentioned that I am still listening to Redwall, and it remains so, but I am a good way in - six or seven discs out of nine, I think. I'm liking it so far. I have the prequel, Mossflower, on here too. The only two problems I have had with the audio books have been 1) The Lovely Bones, which was missing a CD, and 2) The World According to Garp, for which Disc 2 was identified as Disc 1 on two separate copies. I guess I'll just read the bound book.

You know what? I'm going to put my Poison Eaters review here after all. I'd give the book four stars out of five, and I really enjoyed all of the stories, particularly "A Reversal of Fortune," "The Coldest Girl in Coldtown," and one I'm forgetting the name of, about a wolf eating people in a castle (sorry Holly!). And of course "The Poison Eaters" was rather interesting. I try to be pickyish about what I give five stars, but this book was really good in every way. Recommend? Certainly.

I went to my first Printz club yesterday, and I enjoyed it. I only wish I'd known about it years ago. I got some good recommendations, and I checked out a book called The Floating Islands, which looked good. I'll see these people in maybe four weeks (some sooner), and I look forward to it. I also met some awesome people there, such as (Nikki? Was that it? She was really cool). Hannah of course is amazing, and Olivia too, and that Rachel seems pretty cool...and lucky her mother lets her have a sword (mine is quite paranoid). And this guy named Alex seemed very friendly. Overall, aside from the not knowing why people start clapping at times, I think it will work out well.

Monday, April 4, 2011

The Serial Killer

"SQUIRREL!!!" - Doug (talking dog from Up)

No, this is not about a murderer. It is about books killed by serial overload. I'm saying that if a book is part of a huge series, then many people do not have the focus or speed to read through them in order. It is different if the author simply has many books--many of my favorite writers do--but if there are twenty books in one string, they have to be pretty darn good for me to read all of them *cough, Robert Jordan*.

The same applies to the telly. Many things I have begun or plan to have a bazillion seasons in order, and while some of them are almost definitely worth it (Doctor Who), I simply don't get enough time to watch all - especially since nobody mentioned the good shows until a year ago. I don't watch a whole lot of TV, but there are certain things of interest. Another thing is that I don't always have the time.

I don't expect you guys to read every post I've ever written--you don't need to scan through them all to understand this one, do you? If there is a technique to doing so, please comment and tell me.

The recently deceased (rest in peace) Brian Jacques seems somewhat of an exception to me. I am listening to his first in the series (book and series both called Redwall) and have the one for the prequel, Mossflower. There are, I believe, twenty-one books in order, but this one is pretty good so far. I plan on at least listening to the first two, and eventually the whole series. This is because it retains interest, and because each book sounds like it has its own ending (not "To Be Continued").

I have school in about an hour, so I'll leave it there. I don't think I've ever blogged this hour on a school day before. Also, I seem to be BEDA-ing without exactly meaning to--I've been blogging a lot, but not because it is April.

Anyway, take care.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

In Which I Thank People for Ruining Stuff

Ironic title, but it serves its purpose. Sometimes things need to be ruined to ward off false impressions. For example, I thank the person who permanently ruined April Fool's for me. Not sarcastic. I thank my father for ruining Ayn Rand: I actually thought she was interesting until he made the analogy (another one, but not initially mine) of stop signs. If they were invented during Rand's life (were they? Doesn't matter, it's a theoretical example), she would say "This is a good invention, but what if we had stop signs every three inches? THAT wouldn't be good!" We do not have stop signs every three inches, and as far as I know nobody plans on it, so there's no need for a serious warning. In other words, she made outrageous scenarios by stretching thin basic concepts. and of course that is considered philosophy by some.

One thing I always change my mind about is The Chronicles of Narnia. I didn't like it at first because animals died (I was huge on animals), then I liked it when I saw the movie in 2005, then shortly after the Prince Caspian film, Pam (a friend) pointed out how predictable they are, what with Aslan always coming to the rescue. I am thankful to her for ruining it for me, although I'm now pretty OK with them because of the fantasy stuff. I do plan on finishing the books.

So while by no means is ruining always good, it can be, it seems.

Comment or whatever,

Right and Wrong Opinions

About a year back, when Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland came out, Emily R posted on Facebook about what an awesome movie it was (which it was). Ezra said something along the lines of "No it is not, but I respect your opinion, no matter how wrong it may be." Laugh I did (he is a funny guy when his jokes make sense), but it got me thinking: Can an opinion be wrong?

If I am correct about opinions, yes. Not that one, of course. No. But say (I use a lot of analogies) there is a hippo and my opinion is that it is a rhinoceros. I may think that, but facts are facts. It's different if one says "Roses are beautiful" or "Fish sticks are nasty!" (both true, ha). It's to do with elementary fact-and-opinion reasoning. I'm not altogether sure about the whole factual thinking part (getting facts wrong), about whether those count as opinions. But another thing I'll mention is ill-founded opinions (I believe I have mentioned them) - when someone forms judgment without proper evidence. In other words, haste (hastiness?). Take the aforementioned hippopotamus. I have friends - very good ones - who could argue until purple-faced that it was a rhino, and not produce a shred of proof. Humans hate being wrong, I guess. Not excluding myself: I can certainly be wrong, but I am more cautious about not assuming stuff and getting my facts straight, etc.

Moreover, you should see here that I  stated I've been told different things about what is and isn't an opinion. I try to be as careful as I can (Treebeard comes to mind). So most of the time when someone is dead certain they've caught me jumping to conclusions, his or her (opinion?) is wrong.

Thanks for reading,

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Why Am I Awake?

Look at the hour! Goodness. I felt like writing another blog post, so here it is. I am listening to David Foster's version of "Carol of the Bells" (mentioned in the previous post). It is a beautiful piece of music, any time of year. I remember reading Harry Potter while listening to it. Don't ask why, 'cause I don't know. I need to reread those; they were unbelievably good. When Deathly Hallows - Part 2 comes out, I will be uber excited, but sad when it ends too. I grew up with Harry....

As mentioned a couple times, I have a guitar now and I am currently teaching myself basic chords. Hannah will help me with the other stuff. Ah, yes: Did I offend anyone? I hope not, but I, too, am allowed an opinion (objective opinions may make a good post). Just know that I love you (in a friendly sort of way), and that I hold you all in high esteem. So. Guitar. I figured out a few snippets of songs via individual strings, such as the Harry Potter theme, the climax of "Journey to the Cave" (HP6), "Smoke on the Water," "Brand New Day" (Dr. Horrible), etc., etc. I have at least one out of three basic chords down; need to check if I remember the other two. It's actually a lot of fun.

I had a piano lesson on Saturday (yesterday). It had been a while, and now I have playing homework (which I'm actually remembering this time). This is turning out interesting. I like to participate in more than one art; I am attempting to get into acting once more, but need to persevere yet. Visual arts I'm semi-decent at, but I do not often engage in them. Ezra says that a person usually has two arts (he has at least three...ha), and I agree on the jack-of-all-trades level, but I think it is possible to do more than two things, even if for fun.

Fun - that's what it's about, yes?

On another topic, I still do not know what I want to do as an adult career. I know I've got time, but STILL. I'm thinking between teacher and librarian now, but neither seem to pay well. (Not in it for money, but I would like to be able to make a living, too). I want a job that I can live off of, but also I have time to do stuff I love (read, write, etc.).

One more spontaneous item to this random post: I would like some tea. Oh, and yes: I stayed up all night somehow.

So, tea.

I will post later.


Friday, April 1, 2011

Pet Peeves

It seems that writers often have pet peeves that come from no logical place, and I would like to discover my own. For example, Tom Monteleone is fine with the word "writer" but not "author." OK. Emily R does not like the phrase "thinking outside of the box," which is understandable as it is overused. My Creative Writing teacher Mr. Nantz does not like the word "flow" when describing writing. And check out The Spring Grinch here!

What I'm saying is, a lot of us seem to dislike things irrationally, and I wonder at that. I never lie, but I tell April Fool's jokes sometimes - THERE IS A DIFFERENCE. It's just like saying "Just kidding!" - as long as the joke hurts no one, there is no cause to get upset about it. She mentions in there some exceptions, but I do not do that. And I rather don't like being caught off guard when people dislike something and I have no way of knowing. Granted, I have many holidays I like better, but anything can be used badly. So why blame April 1?

Also, I finally got a guitar today. I cannot wait to learn how to play! It's been bloody long enough. I have a lot of stuff to do; my life is behind schedule.