#WWW and #WIPpet Wednesday – 22 March, 2017

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Welcome to WIPpet Wednesday! This is a weekly blog hop hosted by yours truly. If you’re a writer, you are very welcome to join us by posting an excerpt from your WIP that somehow relates to the date. You can click the blue guy on the right of this blog to be taken to the link up.

While I’m back to working on With Memories and Magic, I thought I would continue sharing from my Wizard of Oz retelling for the rest of March. In this scene, Dora is talking to Julia Lyons, a fellow actress, about auditions and particularly the one she has coming up. I’ve added 2+2+3 for seven paragraphs.

“That’s the spirit! Hey, maybe you could come along to this one I’m going for next week.”

“What is it?”

Dora fished in her handbag and pulled out a battered library book. It was called A Hero’s Mission and the cover showed a half-naked man wielding a sword.

Julia raised her eyebrows. “It’s looks terrible,” she said frankly.

“It’s… pretty terrible, yeah,” Dora agreed. “But there’s this princess that he rescues at the start, and that’s the role I’m going for. It’s being directed by Oliver Zamik -”

“Oliver Zamik who directed A Pirate Tale? Dora, this will be terrible!”

“I know! His movies are always awful. But think about it. A small role in a crap but popular fantasy movie could be my big break!”

And that’s why I’ll stick to community theatre and never bother trying it professionally. 😛

And now it’s time for WWW Wednesday! This blog hop is hosted by Sam over at A World Of Words. Link up with us by commenting on Sam’s post for this week, and just answer the three questions.

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What have you recently finished reading?

Nothing finished this week, but I did DNF Adverbs by Daniel Handler. It’s not that it was bad, just one of those cases where I wasn’t really digging it and I had other books that I wanted to get to. In another time and place, I may well have read it right through.

My reviews of A Tangle of Gold (Colours of Madeleine #3) by Jaclyn Moriarty and  So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed by Jon Ronson went up this week. Click the titles to read them.

What are you currently reading?

Currently reading A Conjuring Of Light by V. E. Schwab. I think this is definitely back up to the standard of the first book (I found the second one incredibly dull and it took me forever to read). Having said that, I was thinking about this series as a whole yesterday and I don’t think I’ve loved it overall as much as others have, but I am glad that I’m seeing it through. It is nice to actually tick a complete series of my TBR.

What do you think you’ll read next?

A colleague leant me the first four books of the Parasol Protectorate series ages ago, so I want to start Soulless and finally see if I like it or not. I’m generally not the biggest fan of vampires, werewolves, etc, but I understand this is quite a witty series and I am a fan of that. So we’ll see.

What are you reading this week? 🙂

~ Emily

#WWW and #WIPpet Wednesday – 15 March, 2017

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Welcome to WIPpet Wednesday! This is a weekly blog hop hosted by yours truly. If you’re a writer, you are very welcome to join us by posting an excerpt from your WIP that somehow relates to the date. You can click the blue guy on the right of this blog to be taken to the link up.

I was away over part of last week and briefly returned to With Memories and Magic but my main project at the moment is still my Wizard of Oz contemporary retelling. Today I’m sharing 15 lines for the 15th day of the month. Dora is chatting to one of her housemates, Sam Crowe, who if you couldn’t tell from the name, is the Scarecrow character. He’s only just started college and he’s already flunking out.

“I barely passed this paper,” he said. “If I don’t pick up my grades soon, I’m going to flunk this class.”

“What’s the class?”

“Twentieth century American literature.”

Dora stopped leaning on the door frame and took a seat on the couch next to him. “I did a few literature courses while I was getting my drama degree,” she said. “I did pretty well. Maybe I could take a look at it for you. I might be able to give you some advice.”

Sam didn’t look too thrilled at the suggestion, but he shrugged and handed the paper to Dora anyway. The topic of the paper was broad, asking for a discussion of themes in Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath. As Dora glanced over it, she began to see a few reasons for Sam’s lower marks. He didn’t really focus on a particular topic; instead he jumped from idea to idea. His examples were vague, too. She had a feeling he had only read parts of the book and was trying to shoehorn in the quotes he was familiar with, even if they didn’t quite fit the point he was trying to make.

“Listen, I’m not trying to be rude,” Dora said, “but did you actually read the book?”

“Yes,” Sam replied, too quickly. Dora just raised her eyebrows at him and he looked away, shrugging again. “Maybe half of it. I used CliffsNotes for the rest.”

Dora bit her lip, trying not to laugh. “Sam, do you really think CliffsNotes is going to get you through college?”

And now it’s time for WWW Wednesday! This blog hop is hosted by Sam over at A World Of Words. Link up with us by commenting on Sam’s post for this week, and just answer the three questions.

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So I had the majority of this post ready for last week, then I shut down my computer and went away for three days without finishing it and posting it, so here we are! As a result, and the fact that I had lots of reading time while I was away, this is sligthly longer than usual.

What have you recently finished reading?

These aren’t in order of when I read them, rather I’ve grouped like books together.


I have finished the entire Colours of Madeleine series by Jaclyn Moriarty, comprising of A Corner of White (which I listened to on audio and the narrators were completely awesome), the Cracks in the Kingdom and A Tangle of Gold (I read these two in paperback). The first two I absolutely loved, but I was let down by the third one sadly. My reviews of A Corner of White and Cracks in the Kingdom are here and here respectively. A Tangle of Gold’s review goes up on Friday.

On a related note, I was thinking about starting a “this series started so well, what happened?” shelf on GoodReads because this happens to me an awful lot! Or maybe I need to swear off series and concentrate on standalone books.

untoldcoverI also finished Untold, the second book in the Lynburn Legacy series by Sarah Rees Brennan. The character arcs and the writing were really well done but the plot itself was a bit light on the ground. Review here.

I also finally got back to the Lemony Snicket books and read The Wide Window and The Miserable Mill, books three and four of A Series of Unfortuate Events. I haven’t been reviewing these because they work to a particular formula and I don’t think I would have enough to say about each of them individually, but they are rather addictive! Though I seem to be liking the odd-numbered books better than the even-numbered ones, so that’s a thing.

And last but not least, I’m going to put this here because I’m going to finish this tonight, So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed by Jon Ronson on audio. This is an interesting book exploring the issue of public shaming in the age of the Internet, and how a person can have the virtual screaming hoards pile onto them and they can lose their jobs, etc, over one badly worded tweet. It’s fascinating stuff, though I think some of the things he talks about are a bit tangential, or at least the way he structures the book makes them seem that way.

I also posted my review of The Fearless Travelers’ Guide to Wicked Places by Peter Begler since my last post.

What are you currently reading?

After weeks of having this book as the answer to What do you think you’ll read next, I am finally actually reading Adverbs by Daniel Handler. It’s essentially a short story anthology, but the stories are all set in the same universe, and the main characters in some stories show up later in smaller roles in others. It’s interesting, but the writing style is a bit pretentious, but then I guess even his Lemony Snicket books are a bit pretentious.

 

What do you think you’ll read next?

So I thought my March TBR had gone right out the window, but I’m actually not doing too terribly with it, despite getting distracted by Jaclyn Moriarty. A Conjuring Of Light by V. E. Schwab is still waiting for me on Kindle, so that will probably be next. After that, I’m looking forward to returning to my Beat the Backlist and Australian Women Writers Challenge items for a while.

What are you reading this week? 🙂

~ Emily

#WWW and #WIPpet Wednesday – 01 March, 2017

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Welcome to WIPpet Wednesday! This is a weekly blog hop hosted by yours truly. If you’re a writer, you are very welcome to join us by posting an excerpt from your WIP that somehow relates to the date. You can click the blue guy on the right of this blog to be taken to the link up.

I mentioned in my Sunday Summary post that I had decided to put With Memories and Magic aside for a while and focus on a new project. Some of you may remember a while back I mentioned a plot bunny for a contemporary Wizard of Oz retelling. I planned it out at the time and intended to start working on it in March. Well, I started a few days early.

I’m trying to remember to use American English, since it is set in America. I had to google “What do Americans call a dressing gown?” the other night because I was totally blanking on “bathrobe”. At the moment, it’s strict contemporary, no fantasy elements, though that may change if it takes my fancy.

Here are a couple of paragraphs from the opening scene (third month – first day). Dora has arrived at Linda North’s boarding house during inclement weather. Linda is awesome and had hot chocolate waiting for her at the door.

“Here, dear,” she said, placing the mug in Dora’s grateful hands. “This is terrible! I can’t believe you drove through that. I’m surprised you didn’t get blown away!”

Dora let the warmth of the mug flood through her before taking a sip of the hot chocolate. She swallowed and shrugged in response to Linda. “It was only the last twenty miles or so that were really bad,” she said, and then took a slightly bigger gulp of the drink.

You Americans and your miles. I had a rough distance in mind and had to convert it from kilometres. Because I’m pedantic like that and just picking a number out of the air just won’t do. 😛

And now it’s time for WWW Wednesday! This blog hop is hosted by Sam over at A World Of Words. Link up with us by commenting on Sam’s post for this week, and just answer the three questions.

wwwwednesday

What have you recently finished reading?

fearlesstravelersguidecoverI finished The Fearless Traveler’s Guide to Wicked Places by Peter Begler and while I enjoyed aspects of it, I found myself skimming the last 100 pages or so. It was a bit too slow. My review will go up on Friday.

Just one review this week, of Neil Patrick Harris’ Choose Your Own Autobiography.

What are you currently reading?

cornerofwhitecoverI’m almost done with A Corner of White by Jaclyn Moriarty on audio. I’m really enjoying it, though I can understand why the reviews are somewhat mixed. It’s one of those books where I think the charm of it is really enhanced by the narrators, though unfortunately, my library only has this one Overdrive, so I’ll have to read the print books if/when I continue the series.

untoldcoverI’ve also started Untold, the second book in the Lynburn Legacy series by Sarah Rees Brennan . So far it’s a good follow-up to Unspoken. Jared’s being a jerk, though.

What do you think you’ll read next?

adverbscoverI think it will Adverbs by Daniel Handler and that will be the last of my library books. I’m also traveling to Sydney next Monday and to save space in my bag, I’m just going to take my Kindle and start A Conjuring Of Light by V. E. Schwab, so I can (hopefully) squee with the rest of you. I have about 7 hours of traveling all up, so I should be able to make a good dent in it.

I also posted a full March TBR here yesterday.

What are you reading this week? 🙂

~ Emily

#WWW and #WIPpet Wednesday – 22 February, 2017

bookcrossinglogoSo quick question. Does anyone here do Bookcrossing? It’s that thing where you register a book and it gets a unique ID which you write on a little bookplate and then you leave it in a public place and hopefully the person who picks it up will register it and you get to see where your book travels.

I’ve known about it for ages but I’ve only just joined. I “released” my first few books this morning to an “official” crossing zone, so a place where other users actively look. It looks like my state, for all its tiny-ness, has a very active Bookcrossing community, which is quite exciting. I did make a pact with myself though, that I would release a few books before I go about capturing any and giving myself more books to read.

Anyway, that turned into a bit more than a quick question. But let me know if you’ve ever done it! On with the blog hops!

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Welcome to WIPpet Wednesday! This is a weekly blog hop hosted by yours truly. If you’re a writer, you are very welcome to join us by posting an excerpt from your WIP that somehow relates to the date. You can click the blue guy on the right of this blog to be taken to the link up.

I haven’t written much so far this week, as I’ve become stuck on a slow scene. I am tempted to just leave it for Future Emily to finish/fix in revisions. Future Emily won’t be too happy but that’s also Future Emily’s problem.

I have four paragraphs following on from last week’s snippet. Clara is letting the bad guys think she’s going with them, in order to let Max and Jana (Max’s aunt, and to Clara’s knowledge at this point, her godmother) get away. Max knows this is the plan because they were able to communicate telepathically, but Jana doesn’t.

She looked at the four strangers. “I get the feeling that even if we got away from you now, you would keep coming after me,” she said. “So I decided to come with you. After all, in the first words you spoke to me, you told me more about where I come from than these guys ever have.” She jerked her head towards Max and Jana and saw Conrad smirk at the dig. Max kept his expression neutral, but Jana began to open her mouth to argue.

“It’s fine, Aunt Jana,” she said. “I know it was ‘for my protection’” – she did air quotes as she spoke the last few words – “but I’m tired of not knowing anything. And if this does all fall apart, I can magic myself back to you, right?”

She tried to give her godmother a reassuring look. Locking eyes with her, she sent her thoughts through to her.

This is part of my plan. But do feel free to object out loud.

And now it’s time for WWW Wednesday! This blog hop is hosted by Sam over at A World Of Words. Link up with us by commenting on Sam’s post for this week, and just answer the three questions.

wwwwednesday

What have you recently finished reading?

traitortothethronecoverI finished Traitor to the Throne by Alwyn Hamilton and while I figured out the twist right at the end before it was revealed, it was nonetheless a really fun book! Usually I’m not one for in depth political intrigue, but there was just enough in this one. And very little romance, which also worked for me.

I posted my Traitor to the Throne review here and you can also read my review of The Mesmerist by Ronald J. Smith here.

What are you currently reading?

fearlesstravelersguidecoverI have started The Fearless Traveler’s Guide to Wicked Places by Peter Begler. It’s quite slow-going and while I am liking it, I’m not sure it would keep an actual middle-grade reader interested. My reading speed also slows right down when I’m reading something slower-paced, so it might take me a little while to finish.

cornerofwhitecoverI also began A Corner of White by Jaclyn Moriarty on audio yesterday. This has been on my Australian Women Writers Challenge TBR for a while, so when I saw it available on Overdrive, I picked it up. It has various narrators, but one of them is Fiona Hardingham, who I just recently listened to narrating The Dark Unwinding.  She’s got a lovely, silky voice that’s really easy to listen to.

What do you think you’ll read next?

adverbscoverI’ve got a couple of ARCs still pending but one of them has been on NetGalley for a year after its publication and the other is not published until  the end of April, so I feel I can let them both sit for a while. After 3 ebooks, I’m rather hanging out for a physical book. I think it untoldcoverwill either be Untold, the second book in the Lynburn Legacy series by Sarah Rees Brennan or Adverbs by Daniel Handler. They’re the two things I’ve currently got out from the library, so it would be good to get through them and then return to working through things I own.

What are you reading this week? 🙂

~ Emily