New Year and things

January 4, 2010

So, I have this blog that I almost never update. And by almost never I mean I haven’t updated this since May. And really, the reason I don’t is that I have this deep and horrible fear that what I have to say just isn’t good enough, and that I am not good enough, and also there are billions of blogs out there anyway, so why I should I bother?

But then I also figure that maybe I should just get over myself and blog at least a little bit. So here is the state of me as we begin 2010. I am still horribly behind on my comics, and I am coming more and more to the realization that I just don’t actually care. I probably would care a lot more if I didn’t look at the pile of comics and wonder why I’m reading them, so I think this might be the year where I stop reading comics that I know I will hate (I’m looking at (Teen) Titans, Red Robin, and Green Arrow) and just read the ones that I know will fill me with joy (Batgirl! Tiny Titans!). This is probably a healthier attitude toward comics anyway.

My big resolution for this year is to actually try and review things that I read. Not just comics, but books. I read 289 books last year, and didn’t review any of them. So I’m going to try to do that.

Of course, I also claim that this is the year that I’m going to learn to cook, and also exercise three times a week, so who knows if I’ll actually keep up with these things. But I’m going to try.

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Book Meme

April 20, 2009

Jen says that I should do this meme, and since I can’t just spam the comments on her blog, as I normally do with the Fantastic Fangirls, I guess I’ll just have to create one of my own. So hi. I’m Margot. I read a lot of books and a lot of comics, which I might occasionally talk about here.

1. What author do you own the most books by?

So, here’s the thing. I have a lot of books. Most of those books are still in boxes in New York, because when I moved to Georgia I only took what I could fit into my car, which meant I could only bring 4 boxes of books with me. The rest are in storage. Which meant that I left all of my Piers Anthony books in New York. Look, while most of my friends were reading Tammy Pierce or Mercedes Lackey when they were 12, I was reading Piers Anthony. This is my father’s fault.  And I have a very severe love/hate relationship with Piers Anthony. I think he’s an awful writer, and his id is always showing in a way that makes me want to throw things, yet I cannot stop reading the Xanth books. I have problems, okay?

2. What book do you own the most copies of?

If we’re counting all those books that are in storage, I have 4 versions of The Iliad and The Odyssey. But since those are 1,000 miles away, I’ll go with the fact that I have two copies of So You Want to Be A Wizard. Why do I have two copies down here? Because I let someone borrow a copy in college, never got it back, bought a new copy, and then got contacted out of the blue by this person to let me know that she’d found my copy and was mailing it back to me.

3. What fictional character are you secretly in love with?

Dick Grayson. It isn’t that much of a secret. Also, Mr. Darcy. But who isn’t?

4. What book have you read more than any other?

Um. I cannot answer this. I reread books a LOT. I have books that are comfort reading of “I am having a bad day so I am going to sit here and read them because it will make my bad day suck less.” And I make it a point to reread certain passages of things at least once a year.
Probably the book I’ve read the most is The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe. This is just a guess, however. As I said, I re-read books a LOT.

5. What was your favorite book when you were ten years old?

Probably the Chronicles of Narnia. If I was 12, I would tell you the Xanth books. It also might be the Star Wars expanded universe. Or possibly Bruce Coville’s My Teacher is an Alien series. Or possibly The Girl With The Silver Eyes by Willo Davis Roberts. I desperately wanted her to grow up to join the X-Men.

6. What is the worst book you’ve read in the past year?

I am not including comics in this. The answer might be the Twilight series, but I enjoy mocking them too much. I think the worst book I’ve read in the last year (okay, I think I read it in February of 2008, but close enough) was Tunnels, by Roderick Gordon and Brian Williams. I read it because I was working in the bookstore at the time, and the book was being promoted as the next Harry Potter, and somehow I managed to get through the entire thing, even though I complained loudly to anyone who would listen to me that all of the characters were flat, the world had horribly large plot holes, and also point of view does NOT WORK LIKE THAT.

I’m guessing that my capslock there probably does prove that I’m still angry about it. Heh.

Alternately, my answer is the most recent Piers Anthony book – Two to the Fifth. Early Piers Anthony looks sane by comparison, as this is the second Xanth book in a row where the main character has sex with twelve year olds. SERIOUSLY PIERS ANTHONY, STOP IT.

7. What is the best book you’ve read in the past year?

That is an unfair question. Um. Are we going by favorite or best? (I don’t have my list of books I’ve read in 2009 with me, which is already over 100 books. So I will instead go by my list of books read in 2008, which I do have saved in my email.) I discovered a lot of new series in 2008 – The Vorkosigan books, Honor Harrington, Lord Peter Wimsey, the Jules and Robin books… but I’ll go with Little Brother by Cory Doctorow as the best one I read.

8. If you could tell everyone reading this to read one book, what would it be?

I read a lot of YA, and my taste is weird, and I tend to not rec books to people because I’m always convinced they will hate it and then judge me. However, I happen to think that everyone should read at least one of the following: Brave New World, 1984, Fahrenheit 451.

9. What is the most difficult book you’ve ever read?

I hated James Joyce. You really have no idea how much.

10. Do you prefer the French or the Russians?

This is where everyone starts laughing at me for not really reading either, right?

11. Shakespeare, Milton or Chaucer?

Shakespeare. Although I love Paradise Lost.

12. Austen or Eliot?

Austen.

13. What is the biggest or most embarrassing gap in your reading?

The classics. I actually made it through undergrad without taking any English classes. (I took creative writing, but it is best not to discuss that.)

14. What is your favorite novel?

This is an unfair question and I refuse to answer it. Let us just say that if you happen to see a novel where there is a spunky young heroine who needs to overcome obstacles to save the day, I probably love it.

15. Play?

The Crucible. Or Much Ado About Nothing.

16. Poem?

I like Shel Silverstein a lot.

17. Essay?

Did you catch the part about gaps in my reading?

18. Short Story?

I tend to read novels, not short stories. There are some short story collections I like, but I can’t think of any right now.

19. Non Fiction

I really like histories of musicals. So I really enjoyed America’s Songs: The Stories Behind the Songs of Broadway, Hollywood, and Tin Pan Alley. I am also a dork.

20. Graphic Novel?

I read a lot of comics, and most of them I read in single issues. I read a lot of New Teen Titans in trade form, and since my love for the Wolfman-Perez era is very well established, let’s go with that.

21. Science Fiction?

Ender’s Game. I went through a phase in high school where I wasn’t actively looking for new books (shocker) and was just rereading things I’d already read or discussing Harry Potter endlessly. Then my dad gave me Ender’s Game and told me to read something new. And even though it was a classic at that point I hadn’t read it yet. I did, and then I went looking for more scifi.

21b. Fantasy?

The fact that this was left off this list made me sad, so I included it. I love Tamora Pierce and Mercedes Lackey. I also love David Eddings. Shut up.

22. Who is your favorite writer?

Probably Tamora Pierce. Or Bruce Coville! I secretly want to grow up to be one of them. It would help if I would actually write something though.

23. Who is the most overrated writer alive today?

STEPHENIE MEYER. Her books are JUST BAD. Why are they selling? NO, SERIOUSLY?

24. What are you reading right now?

The Graveyard Book, The Hunger Games, Essential X-Factor vol 1, and the Ten Cent Plague. (I would say ‘all the comics from the last month’ but I finally caught up.)

25. Best Memoir?

I tend not to read them. I read a lot of inspired teacher stories when I was in undergrad because I wanted to be a teacher, but now they just make me grumpy.

26. Best History?

This is where I have to admit I don’t have one, and clearly this proves why I was the worst history teacher ever. I don’t have one.

27. Best Mystery or Noir?

Lord Peter Wimsey! But I also like the Amelia Peabody series.