Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Preview Catalogs... Who knew?

I've been discovering amazing new things about the publishing world these past few months, and I'm getting more and more envious of those who work at publishing companies especially for these reasons. Not only do they get to develop literature when it's still undercover from the public eye, they get advanced reader copies and they get to talk to the authors and meet with them and just be in their awesome presence. I mean, for a book lover, authors are pretty much top shelf celebrities. Movie stars are sub-par compared to authors, especially the authors who have written works that I love.

But what I'm coming to realize is, even though it's completely necessary for publishing companies to market certain books/novels to certain age groups, I always find myself amazed at what I actually read. I've read Jane Yolen past the age that was considered "appropriate" and I still believe some of her books were what truly got me into reading for REAL. Not just to get it over with, but because I enjoyed the characters development and I enjoyed being scared enough to sleep with the light on, even if it was just a chapter book.

Besides that one book that was written by a 12 year old about how to talk to girls, almost all literature/novels/books are written by adults. So there is always that underlying theme of adult entertainment. Now wait a minute, "adult entertainment" sounds raunchy and X rated. But what I mean is that just when you watch a movie when you're a child and then you grow up and happen to watch the movie again, things are different. You notice what the characters are really saying, and how their actions have consequences. For an author to write a story, for an ADULT to write a story targeted for a younger audience, there's always room for an older audience too. There's not one chapter book or young adult novel I've read that wasn't written by someone older than 16. Most YA novels star main characters around the age 15-18. But what most people don't truly think about is how the authors are anywhere from 16-50+. It's such a wild and vulnerable time in a persons life that I think most people are drawn to those years of adolescence because we're as impressionable as can be. But what I've learned is that I can appreciate these stories more as an older person, not too far off from the YA novel target age, but far enough that that time has passed for me, and I'm able to mourn for it just a little.

I used to be upset with authors when I was younger, because I thought, what do they think they know? They're not my age. But what I failed to understand is that in order to truly understand something, you have to have lived past it. I experimented with writing frequently when I was in high school, and while I felt that I had a voice and I wanted to be heard, I also knew that my credibility as a young adult was yet to be achieved. I had to grow out of that, "I write in my diary because I'm original" phase and move on with what was going on to appreciate what was actually going on during those years. I don't look back and think, my goodness, I was so lucky to have experienced a healthy and angsty teenage youth.

I'd like to say that I'm still coming to terms with the fact that my teen years were not the best I could have made them, but I tried, and that's the best that I could have done.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

The Breathless Reads Tour 2012

I am completely and utterly envious of those who are able to attend (or have attended) these fabulous tour sites. Not only because these cities are themselves awesome and fun to visit, but because of the amazing authors that will be there! Signing copies of their books! Letting you bask in their amazingness! Taking photos with you! Talking to crowds of their spectacular literature and their personal journeys that brought them here!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Closer, yet still far away

So, I've been at my sister's in MA for exactly a week, and what have I accomplished? Watching about 5 movies and reading 3 romance novels on my kindle. I feel ashamed!

What better way to spend my time then catch up on the other 5-10 books I have hidden in my suitcase? Oh right, I sleep in all day and stay up all night reading author blogs. I really need to work on reversing my time schedule so people stop thinking I'm a vampire with a blog addiction.

During my blog perusals, I've come across book reviewer blogs that have short and long reviews. (I'm a sucker for those longer reviews.)

There are so many different types of reviews available, and the worst part of them? I feel like they don't really get to say what they want to say. I'm still sort of new to the blogging world, but I've read a hefty amount of reviews and most of them are really peachy and enthusiastic. (I can't really disagree, because most books I've read also happen to be fabulous and all I want to do is gush about them.)

I had the pleasure of reading a fantastically brutal review the other day, where the reviewer really set the story apart from others because of their dislike of the main character. Sometimes it's the way the characters act in the heat of the moment or their choices, or the fact that it's just really difficult to see how two strangers can fall in love and promise themselves to each other in less than a week. I mean, I know novels only have so much space before they become epic novels and then a series, but you've got to give your characters a little more depth and friction then just an instant, "omg, we're made for each other." Because honestly, no one wants to hear about how perfect two people are for each other, we want to hear about their struggles and only then can we appreciate what they have after everything they've gone through. Avoid instant connections at all costs.

Unless of course, we're talking about friendships. Although, I'll have to admit, I'm also a sucker for friendships that come from a long back and fourth discourse between two people. Especially when you put those two people together in a dangerous environment, you know who you can trust after you've been through a life or death situation, which is usually the case in most novels. If there isn't a monumental scene in a novel where the chances of a character dying or being severely injured aren't present, I don't really want to read it.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

The cat won't stop meowing

I fly out in less than 10 hours... I haven't gone to sleep yet for the night and it's already morning.
I leave in about 4 hours to go to the airport. My carry on suitcase is super heavy, I hope they don't weigh it. I've got a mini library in there. 
I haven't read anything in a few days and it's making me feel crappy. How can I call myself an avid reader if I avoid my stack of books? I'm a terrible book lover sometimes. 

Sunday, February 5, 2012

I can't change how I feel...

I fly back to RI on Wednesday, and I haven't gotten through nearly as many books as I would have liked. It's less weight to carry back with me... but I guess it'll keep me busy while I'm staying with my sister.

I'm addicted to buying things. Mostly books. I'll even buy a book I already own, just because I can't find it right away or it's currently somewhere else that is not in my hands. I have a bookshelf at home full of books to read, and yet I keep buying more and more books. It's like I can't satisfy this empty feeling in my heart that I will not be able to read all the books I'd like to read in my lifetime, and that makes me extremely sad.

I was thinking about how, the day after I die, anything could happen. The movie I've been waiting for could come to theaters, the book I've been desperately waiting to come out will finally reach bookshelves, and I won't be around for it. It's extremely depressing how deep my thoughts go into how much I will miss when my life hasn't even really begun.

You could say I'm obsessed with books. I like every aspect of them. I like their heaviness, and their formation. I could spend hours just watching book bindings being produced - if that's even possible to watch them doing that. I love the way the pages shlef (yes, I made this word up - it's part onomonopia part ridiculousness) from the right to the left when you finish and move on from page to page. I love the flap cover on hardcover books and how they keep the dust away but they are themselves so fragile and bendable. I love the creativity and original design that goes into each cover design/image and how the font of the title just suits the story so well, or sometimes, so terribly wrong.

I obsess and I hoard books, I don't let others touch books I haven't read yet, and I reserve the right to say, "No, you may not put your grubby heads on my precious novel." These stories, these individual memories, these handheld lifelines, they surround me and make me feel vulnerable, and they comfort me and keep me warm at night. These books are my own, but they are also everyones. What I hold in my hands is a connection to another who also loves the way it feels in their hands when they open to page one, and how fulfilled they feel when they turn the last page at the end.

But why, oh why, are there so many blank pages at the end of books?!