Friday, September 23, 2011

Late-night TV

I remember, back when I was a kid, watching Nick at Night on Nickelodeon. I'm sure that I'm not the only 30-something who remembers that. Back then, it was "Donna Reed," "Mr. Ed," "The Patty Duke Show," and other black and white classic shows. My mom knew those shows, and it always made me think that she was really old (sorry Mom!).

 Tonight, I turned on the TV, looking for something to watch. I ran across "Friends," which is one of my favorite shows. Then I looked down in the corner of the screen. There was the Nick at Night logo.

 Crap. It's official. I'm old.

 Thanks, Nickelodeon. I really didn't need that reminder.

Monday, September 19, 2011

A little bit of statistics

Okay, not real math-like statistical analysis stuff, because honestly, I don't like that sort much.  After dealing with it for my undergrad thesis, I'd rather ignore it until I have to do another thesis.

I do, however, love my blog stats! I've started using, and it makes me happy.  There are charts and graphs and lists, and it's all so pretty!

Did you know that, so far, 757 people have looked at my blog this month?  That's just... neat.

I also love the keyword analysis feature.  Of course, lots of people found me by searching for "something to write about" or some combination of those words, but there were some more... unusual search terms:
why does debbie macomber 311 pelican court spell terrible as Teribly
what's a diagram
HBP stands for
ending of one hour photo explained

Really? I swear, I don't remember writing a post explaining what a diagram is... How did you find me, blogglings?  Are you someone I know in real life?  Did you follow someone's link here?  Or were you the one looking for a diagram explanation?

Friday, September 16, 2011

More Reading!

Yes, I've been reading like crazy lately!  It's kind of awesome, actually.  So after I finished Making Waves by Tawna Fenske, I read the teaser at the end of the ebook.  It was for Romeo, Romeo by Robin Kaye, and the preview intrigued me, so I bought it.  Have I mentioned that this whole ebook thing is a BAD IDEA?  I mean, it's great for the writers out there, but it's not so great for me, because it's SOOOO easy to buy a book on impulse.  At least before ebooks, I had to drag my butt five minutes down the road to B&N, then browse through them all, thinking about which one I want.  I'm much more likely to take my time choosing something.  With the iBookstore, and Nook, and Kindle apps on my phone, I'm getting far too many options at my fingertips, especially in the middle of the night!


I bought Romeo, Romeo on a whim, after reading the teaser.  And I enjoyed it.  It was a light read, and I found myself zipping through it.  The problem was the central conflict - I honestly can't think of any woman I know who would put up with a guy hiding his identity from her, especially if she knew that he was doing it.  Rosalie's family kind of drove me crazy, but I think that was the point.  Also, I tend to smack people upside the head when they call me by an unauthorized nickname, so it irritated me that Nick called Rosalie 'Lee' even though no one else did.  Ever.  All those little things aside, I did enjoy reading it.  And it kept me intrigued - I had a hard time putting it down.  And I can think of three other people that I will recommend this book to.  So if you like a light, quick-reading romance, pick up Romeo, Romeo by Robin Kaye.

I'm also in the middle of The Fiction Class by Susan Breen.  I'm reading this one over lunch breaks at work, but it's not capturing me quite as much as Romeo, Romeo did.  It's interesting, but I'm having a hard time connecting to the voice.  I think it's because of the layout of the story.  The chapters switch between Arabella's fiction class, and her visits with her mother.  After each chapter with the class, you get to see the assignment that Arabella gives them, which has actually caught my interest more than any other part of the book.  It's not bad.  It's well-written.  It's just not working for me.

We'll see how the next set of books stacks up...

Monday, September 12, 2011

A Weekend Full of Books

I did a TON of reading this weekend, mostly because I was flying.  For as long as I can remember, I've read on the plane.  Even when there's an in-flight movie, I'll still read while listening to it.

This weekend, I polished off three books.  First up was Stuck in the Middle by Virginia Smith.  It was a free download on my Nook app, published by Revell in 2008.  It was not a bad book, but it wasn't really my thing. I felt like I was being given a message on a silver platter, with a big flashing sign pointing at it.  I don't mind books that have a message or a lesson, but I prefer to have the lesson be more subtly woven into the story.  I also wasn't too keen on the way the relationships between the sisters were portrayed.  They felt very cliched, and then too easily overcome.  The writing was still a good quality, though I wish the story had continued a little further along.  However, compared to most of the other free books I've read, it was great!

The next one I finished was Jane by April Lindner.  It was published by Poppy in October 2010.  I picked this one up as a 'real' book from the airport in Toronto when I found out my flight was delayed by two hours.  I had listened to Jane Eyre as an audiobook last year, after several failed attempts to read it.  Even though Jane was set in a modern time an place, it captured some of the same feelings as the book it was based on.  There was definitely a constant sense of melancholy, and the voice made Jane sound much older than her 19 years.  I believe that this was intentional, and it worked with the history that Jane had, but I'm not sure if I liked it.  Does that make sense?  It was well-written, it was a clever re-interpretation of a classic, but I feel as ambivalent towards Jane as I did towards Jane Eyre.  I think that the character, no matter which setting she is in, just doesn't resonate with me.  However, if you were a fan of Jane Eyre, I can see how you would really enjoy Jane.

The last one was Making Waves, by Tawna Fenske.  It was published by Sourcebooks in August 2011.  I first heard about this book by reading Tawna's blog.  I've followed her for about a year now, and I've always enjoyed her posts.  Her sense of humor works well with mine, and I think that's part of the reason that I could barely put the book down.  I finished it within a day of starting it, and I'm mostly just disappointed that I ran out of words.  Juli's quirks are adorable, and they're the sort of weird little habits that I've seen in other people (and myself).  The near-misses in the bedroom are intense, and Tawna does a great job of building the tension between Juli and Alex, without overdoing it or making it too cheesy.  I like my romance with a good dose of humor, because, really, romance never goes as smoothly as most stories would have you believe.  If you like a good HEA, and hot-but-not-too-hot-to-lend-to-my-mother love scenes, and a good laugh, this is a great choice.  Of the three books this weekend, Making Waves is the one I'll recommend to most of my friends.  In fact, even though I purchased it in e-book format, I'll be swinging past B&N this week to pick up a physical copy so I can start lending it to my friends.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011


I'm really bad about forgetting to let you know that I'm going to be away, aren't I?  In case you didn't notice, I was AFK this weekend. Instead of posting on Friday, I was on my way to Atlanta for Dragon*Con!  Yes, I really am that much of a geek.  And I'm proud of it.

I had a great time - I actually went to several panels, in several different tracks.  I'm a very diverse geek ;)  I went to the Writer's track, and the Science track, and the Costuming track.  And I also went to the Puppet Slam, which was pretty cool.

The best part, though, was getting to see all of my international friends!  Two were in from England, two from Scotland, and one from Australia.  We were quite the group.  The Brits made their own costumes, and they were GORGEOUS!  It did make it hard to walk through the Con, though - they were constantly getting stopped for photo ops.  Although I did get stopped on several occasions, too, which was really cool!

Wanna see my costumes?

This is my "Veranna" costume.  I made it back in 2006, and over the next two years, I added all of the lace and braided trim.  It came from a McCall's pattern, I think, but I made a few modifications - adding grommets to make a corset-style back lacing has made it possible for me to fit into it for five years!

This is my Steampunk costume.  I ended up getting a necklace to add to the ensemble just a little while after taking this photo.  I think, for next time, I'll have to come up with some sort of accessory and coordinating holster.  I considered a water gun, spray painted bronze, but I think I need to put some more effort into it. 

And, of course, Beeper (the travelling lemur) came along.  Here he is, wearing my steampunk hat.  It's a little bit bigger on him.

So that's where I've been - off having adventures!  I'll try not to disappear again without warning you!