Archive for the Books Category

Book + Hollywood = Good Times?

Posted on Wednesday, June 17th, 2009 at 9:25 pm

Note: I’m killing two birds with one pretzel today. (I figure pretzels are a nicer death than rocks. I’m not a total barbarian, after all.) While waiting for the magic moment when I could wander off and pull my clothing from the dryer, I recorded a podcast episode. I then remembered that I hadn’t cooked up a blog entry since April, so I loosely transcribed my podcast to share here with my readers. And I suppose I should say I transcribed loosely, as opposed to loosely transcribed, so as not to imply that I was plastered while typing. (If you booze, you lose! Stay in school! It’s great to learn ’cause knowledge is power!) Enjoy!

For the audio, use this link (the first 30 seconds or so is the theme song, not a mistake)…

So… it would appear that I absolutely suck when it comes to updating anything. Both my podcast and my blog are beginning to collect dust and cobwebs and all sorts of stuff that Kim and Aggie would disapprove of. (Did you catch that reference without clicking the link? Yes? Ah… you’re awesome.) Where the podcast is concerned, I did record an episode a few weeks back. But it was depressing. VERY depressing. Reading Angela’s Ashes while watching Titanic and listening to The Cure kind of depressing. Alas, it wasn’t published. The good news is that there’s not much in the way of bad news today. Wicked, eh?

I was a lazy bugger for most of the morning, having slept in until 12:30 or so. After a proper shower and all that goodness, I was later abducted by Sean (one of my only local “real world” friends), with whom I journeyed to the cinema! Well… to the pet store and Cup o’ Joe (a coffee shop)… THEN the cinema. We opted for a turn-off-your-brain kind of film (“Drag Me to Hell“) and had a pretty good time. Shorter than normal though, since SOMEONE forgot he had plans with his mother. *shakes head* The crusty old booger. But a good time was had nonetheless.

I haven’t had much reading time as of late, which sucks. I can’t seem to find much time when I’m not being bothered by Dani (I love you!) or neighbor-related noises or migraines. I have a bunch of books I’ve been wanting to start and/or finish reading (including Death Note 11—which I’ve been attempting to finish for 3 or 4 months—and Lee’s sure-to-be nosemilkshooterific books), but the only place I ever seem to get much peace is at the library. And since COTA is quite possibly the nation’s worst transit system, and I do not have a vehicle of my own, I don’t end up at the library as often as I’d like. I hope I’ll manage to put aside a decent chunk of my next day off, so I can finally get a bit of reading done.

On a sort of book-related note, I’m really excited about a few books from my childhood that are being turned into films. Excited and scared, really… you never know what liberties the scary Hollywood folks are going to take with the source material. One movie that’s been on my radar for awhile now is “Where the Wild Things Are.” (If you haven’t read the book… um… check your pulse. Make sure you’re among the living.) This one really scares the crap out of me (figuratively speaking, I assure you) because it is entirely possible for Spike Jonze and Warner Brothers to completely mangle this book and kill all the best parts for the sake of “making a great film.” I’m optimistic, based on what I’ve seen in trailers and a few film clips on IMDB and other sites. Another interesting one will be “Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs.” Honestly, I never even remotely considered this would be made into a film. It simply never crossed my mind, but it’s a brilliant idea. For those who haven’t read the book, it’s about this town where it rained and snowed and such, but it was never what we’d consider rain or snow. They’d end up with things like hamburgers and soup and noodles and pizza. It’s really perfect for the big screen and should be a pretty great adaptation. And it will be a 3D film which, while gimmicky, could work really well with this type of story.

There’s also “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince” coming up next month. And while that’s not necessarily from my childhood (I was in high school when I started reading the series), it’s a book-based film that I’m definitely looking forward to. I’m up to my knees in set reports and pictures and trailers, thanks to all my favorite fan sites, so I’m super excited. (I’m a nerdy little Slytherin, I know.) The more I see of the film, and the more I hear about it, the more anxious I get. And I’ll probably see the film a billion times and spend an entire paycheck on toys and stickers and all sorts of childish Harry Potter stuff that I love so much. I have high hopes for the film, so let’s hope it all plays out well.

I’m going to run off now because it’s late and I really should be asleep. I need to go grab my laundry and konk out. So until next time, be good and stay out of trouble. Night!

The Booky Post

Posted on Friday, March 20th, 2009 at 2:12 am

**Updates are in green.**

Did you know Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle is available as an audiobook? I had no clue. Of course, I’m all about reading actual print books and such. But audiobooks are pretty sweet when it comes to long drives and bedtime. (Hopefully, not at the same time, unless you’re a passenger. I imagine you wouldn’t fare well if you konked out during the Battle of Pelennor Fields and veered into the path of a giant rig carrying chocolate-covered marshmallow Peeps. Potentially delicious, but likely a complete disaster.) I have a bunch of audiobooks on my iPod, which I use during sleepy time. I plug a line-out cord into the booger and plug the other end into my record player. (Yes… one of those things people used “back in the day” for those funky, plastic, musical Frisbee things.) Then I drift away listening to Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince or Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency. (I happen to think Douglas Adams was a freakishly brilliant man and that Billy Boyd’s voice is rather soothing.)

I guess that’s really the end of my audiobook rant. Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle is one of the first books I can recall reading. It was published around four decades before I was born, but it made me laugh in all the right places and was a joy to read multiple times. (Oh geez… did I just use the phrase “a joy to read” in a serious sentence? I’ve become my 3rd grade librarian!!! ARRGGGGHHH!!!) Here are some cool books I remember reading as a kid. The first herd (yes, as in cows) of books I read have always stayed in my head. (Whoa! That rhymes! You know… sort of.) Go to your local library and check these books out, or click the links below to purchase them!

I recommend starting with Sammy Carducci’s Guide to Women and Seventh Grade Weirdo, as they’re both very well-written and, rather surprisingly, didn’t register with a lot of my friends when I did my little “favorite kids books” survey. More people should read these books! They’re the kind of books that are fun and easy to read. They aren’t dumbed down, and they’re truly witty stories without being too brain-kabooming for the intended age range. (Nothing ruins a book quite like physics equations and that dreaded “train heading to San Antonio at 60 miles per hour” question.) I’m currently tracking down both books so I can re-read them and relive all the goofy goodness of my childhood. Slighty harder with Sammy Carducci, as the book seems to be out of print. I think Amazon has it, but only from the “Marketplace” which is always a bit dodgy. I’ll probably cave in and buy it eventually. I didn’t get to read it as many times as I would have liked because I never owned it. I was simply borrowing it from my Language Arts teacher, Mrs. Marcum, and I had to give it back. (Don’t steal, boys and girls! You’ll grow antlers, and not the cool kind that are all fuzzy and nubby and double as hat racks.)

Seventh Grade Weirdo is, thankfully, very much in print. Oh, and as I found while writing this entry, the author (Lee Wardlaw) is a super amazing person, which makes everything even more enjoyable. Lee talks and writes in a very strange, very funny way. It’s that kind of Gilmore Girls-y vibe. (Yes, there’s a connection, I swear.) It’s like things are making you laugh before you even get the full effect of all the funny goodness. And then you laugh again when you DO get the full effect. (That’s some powerful juju, eh?) So to recap: If you can track down Sammy Carducci, read it! And definitely read Seventh Grade Weirdo, especially if you’re a weirdo… um… and a seventh-grader.

Non sequitur of this entry: I don’t like when people apply a weird pronunciation to the word envelope.

[The rats.]I really love Remy and Emile. (They’re my rats.) They do all sorts of cute stuff. Well… you know… when they’re not too busy eating and pooping. I placed a wheel in their home, and while they don’t seem to understand that it can be ridden, they do seem to realize that it spins. Remy likes to hurl himself at it and watch the resulting rotation. Every few days, I’ll use an Expo marker to write on the outside of their bachelor pad. It’s fun to watch them react to someone writing random messages on their window to the outside world. When they squeak, I imagine they’re critiquing my work and creating a mental list of ingredients for rat-friendly Windex. They’ll escape, destroy my dry-erase masterpieces, and flee to Canada under the names Mr. Pibb and Mello Yello. (I know that sounds completely bonkers, but rats are rather crafty when it comes to falsifying government documents. They’re total Photoshop wizards.)

While typing this entry, I came to the realization that I have no idea how to end it. And so… The End.