Brief Dispatches From the Front

“It must be Thursday.  I never could get the hang of Thursdays.”
– Douglas Adams

A few meandering thoughts for you today.

The office ladies and I held a vote, we’ve decided it should be Friday.

Leaving the gym the other day I passed the entirety of the football team leaving one of the practice facilities.  A hoard of hulking men in padding lurched across the street and I found myself thinking, “Good grief, they’re young.  Infants!”  And then I clutched my pearls to think that I was nearly 4-8 years older than most of them.  They can crush me…but I think they’re babies…

For some reason bright lipstick has recently become necessary to my happiness.  I blame spring fever.

My secret stash of dark chocolate, hidden in my desk for emergencies, is running dangerously low.  On an unrelated note, my exercising regimen has suffered with J. being in town.  On another unrelated note, we’re eating out way too much because I still don’t apparently make enough food to keep him fed.

Scarlett just sent me her next manuscript to edit.  Someday I will have read the next Young Adult literary craze months ahead of the rest of the public.

Speaking of, should probably read The Hunger Games at some point.  Currently I’m in a theological phase reading the Confessions of St Augustine and a tome on the Book of Revelation by a scholar of gnostic Christianity.  No doubt I’ll be in the mood for something easier soon.

I think there are some Thursdays that should be spent out in the Spring sun and not in fluorescent light bulb lit offices.

7 thoughts on “Brief Dispatches From the Front”

  1. If you’re looking for quality reading material…Hunger Games may not be it. It was a good plot, good characters, interesting relationships/story. Good writing? Not even.

      1. I guess I’d have to site 2 reasons for this: 1) It IS a compelling story. It’s full of action and adventure and heart. 2) Our society is becoming increasingly further removed from what is actually good writing. My sister-in-law (who is 15) spelled ‘tomorrow’ wrong on her facebook status yesterday. I’m guessing she (and most other teens to whom the book really is geared) wouldn’t read the book and find herself annoyed by the abundance of sentence fragments or lack of detail.

      2. I absolutely agree with you about becoming removed from good writing! This is why I’m hesitant to really invest in most of the literary fads that seem to crop up, doing so often leads to head scratching and wondering, “This? This is what everyone is so hyped up about?” There is a difference between engaging or compelling and good. It’s totally possible for a story or theme to be an interesting concept or plot, but the writing to still be fairly simplistic or uncomplicated. Which is not meant to be an insult. Such writing does require a level of skill and is an important medium (and I would think even welcome in a day and age where people are starting to question the necessity of books themselves), but it’s been a long time since a book truly wowed me with literary power.

      3. I couldn’t agree more. I think our understand, too, that any “good” book will become a movie is problematic as well. I think writers feel a lot less pressure to really build compelling imagery. That was my biggest problem with Hunger Games (beyond the use of sentence fragments – which made the whole thing feel choppy). I remember discussing it with my mom and my main complaint was that I never felt like I could really see what was happening – that I was there in this world that had been created for me. I was acutely aware throughout the whole book that I was, well, reading a book. Really good writing (whether you are familiar with good writing conventions or not) should, in my opinion, should build a new world for you to envision. This did not happen for me when reading Hunger Games – and that was disappointing. Because, done right, it could have been amazing.

        I’ll even admit the embarassing fact that I’m secretly addicted to the “Pretty Little Liars” television show. So, I decided to try the books. I read the first one – it was TERRIBLE. The show is great (in a smutty, campy, teenager kind of way). A movie or TV show should never be able to out-do a book, but it’s very nature. The fact that this is occurring so often now is disappointing.

      4. I hadn’t ever really given any thought to the idea that maybe some people these days aren’t writing to make a book but to make a movie! (Or, in this age of marketing, action figures, candy, toys, home decor, etc.) If your goal is ultimately to appeal to as many people in as many mediums as possible, any storyline would be choppy, vague, or not fully realized – because it allows readers, producers, directors, PR people, and other consultants to tweak it to make it as marketable as possible.

        Or maybe I’m seeing a media conspiracy where none exists. This too is possible.

        Never apologize for secret addictions. I love the line in R.E.D. where the main female character is talking about a trashy novel she’s reading, “It’s terrible, I love it, it’s just awful!” For more years than I care to admit I watched America’s Next Top Model religiously, and may have continued on had not Tyra gone completely round the twist. We all need a good secret addiction 😉 I’m always on the hunt for a new one for J. to tease me over.

  2. Your anecdote reminds me of Cryoburn (have you read it yet…?). Where the typical (aka huge) Barrayaran 20-year-old Miles describes as “a nice kid” is first seen through the eyes of a nine-year-old boy.

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