Thursday, September 30, 2010

The Mockingbirds by Daisy Whitney

Release Date: November 2, 2010
Amazon SaysSome schools have honor codes.
Others have handbooks.
Themis Academy has the Mockingbirds.

Themis Academy is a quiet boarding school with an exceptional student body that the administration trusts to always behave the honorable way--the Themis Way. So when Alex is date raped during her junior year, she has two options: stay silent and hope someone helps her, or enlist the Mockingbirds--a secret society of students dedicated to righting the wrongs of their fellow peers.

In this honest, page-turning account of a teen girl's struggle to stand up for herself, debut author Daisy Whitney reminds readers that if you love something or someone--especially yourself--you fight for it.

I say:
You guys.
This book? This book is amazing. It is going to win awards. People are going to love it. I loved it. It sends you on a whirlwind of emotions and doesn't let go of you until it's over. And here's the thing -- it felt so real.
Normally, books about such dark subjects are a touchy subject. They can be too dark, too preachy, too much to be real. The Mockingbirds wasn't at all. Alex is a wonderful protagonist. She's talented, smart, sarcastic. She's everything you want to be. But something awful has happened to her, and you hurt with her. But you also get to watch her heal.
The book starts out at the scene of the crime, but Alex can't remember anything. The event of the rape comes back to her through out the book. Normally, I don't like flashbacks. But the way Ms. Whitney pulls them off is not only effortless, but it keeps the awfulness of Alex's situation from rising up and swallowing you by splitting up the sad moments. It also makes it all the more powerful, because not one chapter throughout the book do you forget what happened.
If you get one thing from this review, though, I want it to be this; this book isn't depressing. I tried to explain it to a friend and she rolled her eyes, told me she didn't read books 'like that' -- she then went back to reading Moby Dick. She's worse off for that. The Mockingbirds is not 'that.' It isn't all dark. It's realistic and gritty and yes, awfully, horribly sad, but it's a story about redemption and healing. But, see, Ms. Whitney tells is way better than I just did, so you laugh and grin and roll your eyes at the fantastic dialog. You love her sister, her best friends -- Maia was my favorite, but that's because she's a debater and I'm biased -- and you fall in love with the boy you want Alex to be with. 
This book is honest. It's real. Teachers aren't always there for kids. It's sad and sick, but the administration can't always save teenagers -- even in places as 'perfect' as themis. But Alex's peers step up. She steps up. Her friends step up. And it turned out to be a really great book.
And best of all? If this had actually happened to me, or to someone I knew, or really just any girl, I think it could help them heal.
More later

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Take my glue, ban my books?

Glue. White-out. Some kinds of markers. Spray paint. What do they all have in common? Well, they're needed to create any self respecting project, I suppose. But no, that's not what I'm getting at.
Glue. White-out. Some kinds of markers. Spray paint. All of these things? I can't buy. Just like cigarettes and lighters and matches and knives and guns and bullets and all sorts of other 'dark' things, I can't buy glue, white-out, some kinds of markers or spray paint.
 Sound ridiculous?
No? I mean, yeah, sure, kids do strange things (Marijuana? Apparently it's out, and glue is in?) so maybe we shouldn't be allowed to buy these things.
How about this -- I'm given a school project. I decide to do it over the weekend. So, because I want to do my project over the weekend -- because, well, I'm a relatively good student -- I get in my car. I get in my car, my car that ways several thousand pounds, and I drive to the store. I take my life and the lives of everyone around me into my hands to get to the store.
And I am not allowed to buy supplies.
No. it really doesn't make me angry. It's odd and slightly humorous, but hey, whatever. Mostly, it is just annoying. It's a weird double standard. I can drive. I can jump off cliffs if I want to. I can swim in a lake, have a job, babysit. But I can't buy glue.
And in some schools?
I can drive into the parking lot, but I can't read certain books.
It's ridiculous. And some people -- specific people that I know personally -- think it's ridiculous that a sixteen year old can't buy glue. Yet they condone book banning -- because, after all, it's just a book. There are hundreds of others.
Here's the thing.
I can buy glue sticks, because you can't get high off of that. But it doesn't work as well; it doesn't stick to poster board very well. It's annoying that I can't just have what I want, and more than that, it's insulting. Really? Because of a couple idjit kids, you're going to keep something that they use in school away from me?
Because one parent doesn't like a book, you are going to keep a book out of my hands?
My school doesn't ban books. We've got these awesome robot pictures about it.
And some stores will let me buy glue. 
But the ones that don't are the ones that get the press. They're the ones everyone knows. They're the ones with all the attention. And whether it's banning books or taking away school supplies, it's just ridiculous. 
-shrugs- Harry Potter, Twilight, Vampire Academy, Slaughterhouse Five, To Kill A Mockingbird, Little House on the Prarie . . . . They're part of my life, part of my childhood and my teenage years. To take them away, to challenge my right to read them, but to hand me the keys to a Nissan and send me on my way? 
It's dumb.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

I like the pretty

Yeah. That's right. School has drained so much of my brain that I no longer form proper sentences.
Don't judge me please. I just got my grades and am pulling A's and one B (Chemistry, you and I are NOT FRIENDS EVER) and that plus trying to write new stuff (because you know, people keep talking about how 'write everyday' is all 'yay good' and I want to be 'yay good' so .... don't hate me? Please?) is eating me alive.
Not that the scale has registered that.
-stares at post-
-rolls eyes at self and debates deleting everything-
Anyway. The original point of this was that I am in love with this cover.
In fact, I might marry it. And considering I am not into marrying inanimate things -- plus, you know, it's a chick on the cover -- that means a lot.
Just look.

Dear Celestial Being of Choice: For my birthday, I wanna look like that.
I know there are a ton of people covers out there, but what can I say, I love this one.
So yes.
I like the pretty.
And I just wasted your time to look at a cover and read my rambles.
-offers you ninja knife- Feel free to stab me. *
OOH. Or better yet.
Use one of these.

*I mean cyber stab, obviously. -eyes you nervously- 
Here. Go watch Vampire Diaries. Or, just stare at him.

More later. Possibly with substance attached.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Speak Loudly

I live in Southwest Missouri. I love books. I love reading. I have never believed in banning books and I think it is the epitome of stupid to attempt to censor thoughts. And I love Missouri, too.
Lately, though? My state is making itself look stupid.
(Oh, goodness. My career in politics is gonna be soooo wonderful.)
First, there's this. Guess what? Stockton has an amazing lake. It's school is small, and there's some really pretty houses out there. One July, we set fireworks off on the shore. But guess what? No one knows that about Stockton. They just know that it banned a book. It was a stupid move. But that is not Missouri.
And now there is some asshat who wants to ban Laurie Halse Anderson's Speak. Here's Ms. Anderson's post on it. 
And guess where he lives?
Not so far from me. The place has a great pizza parlor. It has a goat in its school yard and a really good debate tournament. The Ruby Tuesday is like, the center of the town.
He works at MSU. I know MSU. One of my parents went there. One of my best friend's sister goes there.
And my paper posted his comment about how Speak is basically 'soft pornography'.
What the freak?
My newspaper. Mine. Mine and hundreds of other readers. People who love books. This isn't okay, okay? This isn't what the community thinks. He wants to talk soft pornography? Okay, then don't let your kids watch Titanic, Avatar, Twilight -- after all, they deal with relationships.
You wanna talk about Speak? We aren't talking relationships. We aren't talking pornography. We are talking rape. We are talking about a book that is strong and true and honest.
Ms. Anderson mentioned on her blog that no one in the community responded. And I'm so sorry. I know that it's probably true, at least when it comes to the paper. This is me, responding; he's an idiot.He talked about Twenty Boy Summer, too. Slaughterhouse Five.
But please. Don't think Missouri is a bunch of nuts and crazies and book banners. We aren't. We just have some stupid people, but I'm sure South Carolina, Georgia, Oregon and Montana do too. For that matter, so does England, Japan, and probably Iceland. The comments  on the article are true and honest and brave. But please don't stereotype us.
That said . . . This guy is ridiculous. But you know what'll be more ridiculous?
If his voice is heard more than the rest of ours. It's not okay. It's not all right. Reading about rape isn't going to make me lose my morals -- it's ridiculous and insulting to say that. Reading about drugs or alcohol isn't gonna make me go get smashed. Saying this is 'Christian' is such an insult to the entire faith.
So this is me, adding my voice to everyone else's.
This can't happen. If it does get banned, I can promise you this, though -- the uproar won't only be that of the literary world. It will come from this community as well.
Show your support. Banned Books week comes next week, so I suppose it couldn't have happened at a better time.
You've seen the hashtag on Twitter, I'm sure, but it's more than true.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Foreign Friday: I'm not telling you who

A couple of years ago, I turned in a book report. It was a book that no one had really of head of up until then; when people asked me what I'd done, I laughed uncomfortably and tried to find a way not to answer. Instead of a poster or some such, I'd written journal entries from the point of view from a character no one had heard of. It worked out well. I still have the entries, with a pretty 100% drawn in blue ink. Also there? I'll have to check this out.

That character? His name was Edward.
And that book? Twilight.
I liked it. It was prettily written and had a concept no one had heard of before. This was before we thought the quiet girl called Bella was a push over
Germany 2
and before Stephanie Meyer's popularity had clouded people's view of the lovers that captivated the world.
We still thought the Lion and the Lamb line was romantic. That sparkly was still cool.

Norway PB
 That falling asleep in a vamp's arms, right after he'd told you that in another life, you totally would have been heroin was gooey and lovely.
This book inspired at least four girls I know to read. One of them is probably reading this entry right now. (-waves- You know who you are. Hi!)
This book isn't full of perfect characters, because we aren't perfect. And maybe you don't like it. But do you not like it because you honestly have an issue with it? I can think of someone who has articulated fair arguments against it. That's fine. But people who just want to call it 'stupid'?
Come on.
Bashing popularity just because it's popular is just as annoying as being infatuated with something because everyone else is. The literary community tends to be built of strong willed, very intelligent people. But we are also, often, cynical. We don't want to be part of the masses, because, hello, the masses kind of suck sometimes.
Sometimes, they get it wrong.
Like Russia. Um. Her eyes aren't really blue.
Maybe it isn't perfect. Certainly, the movies aren't. (Taylor Lautner tries. He does. But...the first two? Not so good.)

He is remarkably cute.
Lately, there's been a lot of Twilight hate. I get it. I do. We like to hate the popular. I've made some snide  comments about the phenom as well. I've laughed at the commercials for Vampires Suck. And yeah, there are some things about Twilight that can be bashed. (Two movies? Really? Truly? Not needed.) If someone asked me now if I liked Stephanie Meyers work, I probably wouldn't want to admit it. What if they thought I was obsessed?
Look. I'm sure some of you are going to flame me.  Normally, I wouldn't even go there, but with all the Mockingjay comparisons I've seen this week, all the snide comments about Twilight, a facebook group dedicated to hating Bella -- but, dude, they know her birthday, so obviously they've read them relatively closely -- I'm starting to get annoyed. A lot of us liked those books. A lot of us still do, but won't admit it. I would be hard pressed to.
But there's a book report and a grade in bright blue ink that tells me I wasn't always so cynical. Stephanie Meyer smashed open the doors to YA, even as they started to close after Harry Potter. Paranormal will never be the same. Even if you hate the books, it's hard to hate that.
More later

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Five things

Some things should not be done.
For instance, stealing someone's boyfriend? He could be really hot. He might even possess a hot accent. But this is sot cool.
Plaid shorts with polka dot jerseys? I understand. The plaid is purple. The polka dots might be made of sequins. But it is perhaps not the best idea.
Dying your dog pretty colors? Omg, yeah, gorgeous, but . . . It seems a tad mean.
(I love that add though.)
And in writing? There are a lot of don'ts. Quite a few. And there are a lot of blogs telling you all of those rules. But some rules are always overlooked.
So, now? The Five Things Awesome books need.

1) A Main Character Who Isn't Gonna Die
We all knew the Dumbledore was going down. But millions watched and waited with bated breath to see if Harry, poor Harry, was gonna bite it too.
And guess what? (WAIT SPOILER.) (If you haven't read Harry Potter [Yes, Maggie, I am talking to you] Harry doesn't die.

2) Kissing
You wanna know why I loved Catching Fire? Cos I love Peeta. Wanna know why I love the Russian cover of Catching Fire? Wanna know why Mockingjay wasn't my favorite? Because there was not nearly enough kissing. However, there was--

3) Stuff blowing up
Seriously. What else it better? In Harry Potter AND Mockingjay, stuff blows up.
That, my friends, is pretty epic. I'm telling you, it's a SIGN.

4) Normal speak (We are not writing a novel in texting)
OMG, my bff hasn't read Harry Potter and in Mockingjay, Katniss can't pick a bf and you really just wanna be like idc but idk, it's awfully hard to not care b/c u <3 them soooo much.

5) Someone who ignores all rules
An author who tells you the MC and the really hot blonde guy are brother and sister. An MC who is kind of manipulative. A boy wizard who falls in love with his best friend's sister. Rules that might not work in real life, but are kinda cool in a book.
Except number four.
That's not cool.
Like, ever.

More later.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Dear School

Dear Chemistry,
I hate you. A lot. I've always thought science was modern magic, but guess what? I was wrong. You are not worthy of Hogwarts. Not at all.
This is not you.
I like the teacher, but I just can't like you. Please go die. Painfully. And possibly with a loud BANG.
I really, really despise you,

Dear World History,
Did you know that you have seen a LOT? I mean, dang. Plague, war, shmutty aristocratic games, more war, porcelain, Monguls, more war, and probably some really hot dudes? You have had a heck of a run. Please, keep running. I'm enjoying you, even if your tests are HARD.
You keep my ego alive,

Dear Math,
I don't like you either. I thought equations were for me, but I was wrong. I can't remember you all. My brain is too full of information for World History and Hogwarts Trivia Games to keep track of every faucet. So shoo. Fly away. I don't understand why I took Honors. I was young and optimistic then. Now I know better. I wish you loved me. But you don't.
This is me, breaking up with you before you break up with me,
ill never stop dreaming

Dear English,
I'm going to collapse in your arms and scream THANK YOU to the Great Purple Platypus. You are getting me through the day. I don't care that you are making me read about Pilgrims. We should be on Salem Witches soon, and I like that. But mostly, I like you. You are pretty and have good teeth. That's important to me.
Let's get married,

Dear Debate,
You make me bipolar. That's really all there is to it. One minute I'm all YAY I FEEL SMART and the next I am quivering in my NEW AWESOME LACEY SHOES and then having to go hug someone to regain my self confidence. It really doesn't matter if they want to be hugged. It just happens. You make me talk all pretty, though, so--

Dear Spanish/Government/Lunch,
Eh. I like you all in different way. You don't particularly stress me out. I am not fond of conjugating you or memorizing your faucets and dang, one of you is way caloric, but you don't really bother me.
Keep it up,

Dear Alarm Clock,
I don't care that you try and be cute by waking me up with Bon Jovi or Adam Lambert. I don't care that you have a snooze button. You are evil. I really, really dislike you.
I'm not even signing my name. You don't deserve it.

Dear Reader,
Are you still there?
Seriously? -blinks- After that? You aren't GONE?
I kind of love you.
-hands you cookie-
Cookie Monster Cupcakes | Flickr - Photo Sharing!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Review of Matched: By Allie Condie

Release Date: November 30, 2010

Amazon Says:
Cassia has always trusted the Society to make the right choices for her: what to read, what to watch, what to believe. So when Xander's face appears on-screen at her Matching ceremony, Cassia knows with complete certainty that he is her ideal mate . . . until she sees Ky Markham's face flash for an instant before the screen fades to black.

The Society tells her it's a glitch, a rare malfunction, and that she should focus on the happy life she's destined to lead with Xander. But Cassia can't stop thinking about Ky, and as they slowly fall in love, Cassia begins to doubt the Society's infallibility and is faced with an impossible choice: between Xander and Ky, between the only life she's known and a path that no one else has dared to follow.

I say:
Well. The cover glitters.
And the writing isn't bad. And a lot of people have liked, even love it.
But . . .
I'm sorry. I know I was supposed to love this book. But I didn't. In fact, I was kind of underwhelmed.
-takes deep breath-
I don't like giving bad reviews. Normally, I would just keep my cyber mouth shut. I'll explain why I'm not at the end of the post.
I disliked the MC quite a lot. I felt as if she were screwing over Xander, her best friend, through much of the novel, and it was driving me insane. Sure, she felt a little bad. But honestly? If I was doing that to my best guy friend, it would be awful. I just didn't like her. I felt as if the relationship was slightly underdeveloped -- as in, she was only with Ky because she was curious as to why his face flashed up -- and I thought that the 'hooks' of the dystopian world were predictable. The best developed characters, to me, were the 'bad guys' and many of the secondary characters. The last fifty pages were quite good, but I felt as if the rest was building, building, building, and it wasn't until those last fifty pages that I was at all emotionally invested.
But this is the thing.
The book wasn't bad. (Says the person who just wrote a paragraph about what she didn't like.) Really, I didn't like it much, but it wasn't awful. The writing itself was good, the idea was interesting, and hey, flawed characters are great.
But Matched has been built up so much. So, so much. The next Hunger Games, some have said.
No. I don't understand that. Not at all.
It's not on the same level. I don't see any possible similarities. I think that Matched was a solid book, but it wasn't the epic level of Hunger Games. Yes, Ms. Condie shares an agent with Stephanie Meyers, but I don't actually see that much of a similarity to Twilight, either. If this book hadn't built up so much, I might have liked it more. But I opened it up expecting Katniss and Peeta, or even Edward and Bella. And I was disappointed. Like, really disappointed.
I might be one of few. I've been flipping around, looking at other people's reviews, because I was curious. The book earned a 7 figure deal. So...Obviously it has merit. And people either seem to love it or ... really just not. I fell into the second category; it is also the smaller category. A lot smaller. I think people want to like this book, but I'm sorry. I just didn't. I kind of feel like there's something wrong with me because I didn't. But if I hadn't read so much great, shiny stuff about how it was the best book ever, maybe I would have liked it more.
 I'm giving the negative review because I think that it destroys books to be built so high on a pedestal; hopefully, you can go into Matched without quite as high expectations. Chances are, you might like it. You might even love it. I just didn't.
Please don't shoot me.

Saturday, September 11, 2010


I am the youngest that will remember.
I was seven years old. I watched the news from the kitchen. And I remember the horror.
But guess what?
Not everyone does. But we should.

My generation is desensitized. That's all there is to it. It's awful and disgusting, but guess what? When we watched a video of 9/11 yesterday, these were the wonderful tidbits that came from my classmates:

As the first plane hit:
Dude, I wanted a bigger boom!

As the firefighters climbed:
I don't get why it's heroic. It was their job, after all.

And my favorite:
Dude, we're such wimps. It wasn't that big of a deal.
And festivals are held. And people go on. We should. But we should also remember.

Bigger boom? It wasn't 300, or Con Air. It was real life. It was building hit, people's lives destroyed, a country changed.
The people who risked their lives to save others should never -- never -- be demeaned. They did not have to do that. It was the most horrific event to hit my country in the last decade, and they rose to the occasion. They lost their lives. And it is utterly hideous for people my age to have forgotten. We are young, yes, but that is not an excuse.
There is nothing worse than ignorance. Nothing. I am not incredibly patriotic, but I loved my country. And to mock something that awful? That is the epitome of awful.
We aren't 'wimps.' We're human. We were a country unsuspecting and it was a very big deal.
I am the youngest to remember. My generation barely remembers; most of them didn't watch the news. But I'm glad I did.
Because we have to remember. Not for bitterness to grow, for grudges to swell, or to cover our our country in hatred. Not to blame an entire other country, faith, or various pigment. No. We have to remember for those that died. They aren't faceless. They aren't numbers.
They deserve better. 

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Go jump in a volcano

There's a boy I know. We used to be friends -- good friends, actually. And then came sophomore year. I discovered, in this time, something I'd only read about. When someone with talent realizes they have talent, an ego develops.
Wait. Cross that out. Develops? Who am I kidding -- it explodes.
We all like to think that we are awesome and fantastic. That's because we all are part awesome and fantastic. But you know what the fastest way to mute that is?
Develop a massive, oozing ego.
At the Cassandra Clare signing, there was a woman a couple of rows over. Whenever someone asked a not-so-wonderful question, she would sigh loudly, or declare that it was online. I heard her discussing her blog at one point with a random woman; at another point in time, when Cassandra Clare made a comment about inkpop, the woman proceeded to pat herself on the back and inform the random woman -- now looking a bit scared -- that she knew what inkpop was.
Here's the thing.
I have a blog.
I know what inkpop is. I pretty much killed myself staying in the Top Five last March. And yeah, I started to bounce quietly when Ms. Clare mentioned inkpop. I didn't really feel the need to announce it.
And guess what?
No one in the audience was impressed by the knowledge.
The ego needs to be cut. In a bad way. It's like the boy I used to be friends with -- it's hard to be around him anymore, because he just so filled with ego that I find myself inching away as conversations drag on.
This experience seems to illustrate something I've noticed about some of the people in the blogging community; the ones who have discovered some kind of talent. As a community, there tends to be -- well, a little bit of an ego.
I'm not talking about anyone in particular, and I'm not talking, quite frankly, about blogs that have really, honestly 'made it big,' For instance, the best-most-awesome-librarian-ever has a wonderful blog. But she doesn't get puffy and pompous about it. (That's okay. I'll do the gushing for her.)
Blogs are kind of egotistical tools as it is. I mean, we write for other people to read. We assume someone cares what we say. And obviously that assumption is right, otherwise blogs wouldn't be so successful. But it's still annoying when people shout their accomplishments from the rooftops. Or the plastic seats.
Ack. I'm not doing very well describing my agitation. I guess it comes down to this;
People who talk just to hear their voice generally aren't all that entertaining. We've all read books like that.
I seriously hope my blog isn't like that; if it is, tell me, and I'll go jump in a volcano do my best to fix it.

-realizes I just wasted your time reading a post -- by me -- on ego-
Aw, crap.
More later. Or maybe not.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Beautiful Darkness by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl

Release Date:
October 12, 2010

Amazon Says:

Ethan Wate used to think of Gatlin, the small Southern town he had always called home, as a place where nothing ever changed. Then he met mysterious newcomer Lena Duchannes, who revealed a secret world that had been hidden in plain sight all along. A Gatlin that harbored ancient secrets beneath its moss-covered oaks and cracked sidewalks. A Gatlin where a curse has marked Lena's family of powerful Supernaturals for generations. A Gatlin where impossible, magical, life-altering events happen.

Sometimes life-ending.

Together they can face anything Gatlin throws at them, but after suffering a tragic loss, Lena starts to pull away, keeping secrets that test their relationship. And now that Ethan's eyes have been opened to the darker side of Gatlin, there's no going back. Haunted by strange visions only he can see, Ethan is pulled deeper into his town's tangled history and finds himself caught up in the dangerous network of underground passageways endlessly crisscrossing the South, where nothing is as it seems.

I say:
Guess what?
Ethan isn't a vampire.
He isn't a fairy/faerie/faery/weird thing with wings.
And guess what?
I still like him. In fact, I like him even more because he doesn't sparkle. It's so much more manly not to be all glittery.
I thought Beautiful Darkness was oodles and bunches more than Beautiful Creatures, and I was fond of Beautiful Creatures. (My only complaints? It was a tad long and a tad girly.) But in this book, Ethan really came across more 'guy' to me. I'm not quite how to explain how it, but it really seemed as if his character flourished. BD does occasionally seem to slow, but I don't think it's because the plot is lacking -- the books are just really long. (I never thought I would say that about a book. I feel like a failure.)
I LOVE the setting. Gatlin is like, the best town ever. I so want to live in it. There is magic and tradition and pie and more pie and biscuits and awesome people and southern boys and girls who follow strict rules and guidelines.
Lena annoyed me to no end, but in a heart breaking way that made me still want to hug her. (After, you know, slapping her. Or poking her. Or something.) Link was hilarious. Even Ridley ends up with some great surprises. All in all, I was very fond of this book. It was crafted beautifully and oozed with talented writing.
-eyes Saint Louis library- Ms. Garcia and Ms. Stohl will be there soon.
-eyes school- Who really needs that anyway?

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Happy 17th!

It's Maggie's birthday! -waves at Maggie- I'm now going to embarrass her by telling you how awesome she is.
She is basically my favorite person on the planet. This does not include the Sailor Scouts or anything with abs, obviously, but she is very close up there seeing as she watches Sailor Scouts with me and talks about things with abs. Actually, that might boost her to the top. -ponders-
They say Happy Birthday too

 She is talented and awesome and I love her a lot. -bounces- 
We've been friends since fifth grade, but started trading stories late in freshman year. She's the first person who ever read anything I'd written and quite honestly, is the best motivator I could ever have.
 And books. We have similar taste in books and she's GREAT to talk about them with. And plus, she's gonna be an author someday. How do I know? Because the first time she sent me a story, I read it through, then went and read it again. Then a third time. My literal first thought? Holy crap. She's way better than me.
She's not going to believe that. I can guarantee you she won't. But it's completely true. 
 If I get an agent, whether next year or twenty years from now, it will be ALL HER FAULT. I don't know that I would have finished anything without her stabbing me with a pitchfork talking me down from freaky crazy highs or yanking me out of emo lows. Actually, at the freaky crazy highs she's generally bouncing along with me. But that is not the point. The point is she got me through inkpop, and sophomore year when my friends went insane and dramatic and once in 8th grade, when my best guy friend made me cry, she snapped at him and called him an a$$hole. I'd never seen heard her snap at anyone before. It was quite spectacular. As is she. 
Happy birthday Maggie!

Cassandra Clare Signing

Okay, guys. Clap your hands over your ears, because my internet voice is quite loud and screeching right now. I'm way too excited.
I got to see Cassandra Clare on Friday. I was in the SECOND ROW. I could have reached out and POKED her. (I didn't. Because that would be freaky, even for me.) (Though, admittedly, I was one of the lower key people there.) (SERIOUSLY. People were wearing GLITTER. And DEMON TATTOOS.) (Yeah, that didn't freak my dad out or anything -- twelve year olds paint with demon tattoos.) (But he drove for like, four hours so that I could go, so he's still the best.) (I'm gonna get out of parenthesis now.)
Okay, so the crowd. It was quite large. I should have taken pictures. I didn't.  I did take pictures of Ms. Clare, but they didn't turn out so hot and I'm not putting bad pictures online. That is cruel. And I don't want the karma. This, however, was the flier.
The St. Louis County Library's Reading Garden Event Series and Pudd'nHead Books present Cassandra Clare Author of "The Mortal Instruments" Series Friday, September 3, 7 pm  Library Headquarters 1640 S. Lindbergh Blvd. 63131 314/994-3300 Cassandra Clare presents "Clockwork Angels," the first installment in a thrilling new series set in a Victorian England where demons stalk the streets and only the Shadowhunters keep order amidst the chaos. Books for signing will be available for purchase from Pudd'nHead Books.
It. Was. Wonderful.
The event ran smoothly, and despite the fact that there were over a hundred people there, the questions were good. And Cassandra Clare is a WONDERFUL speaker. YEAH. She's AWESOME WRITER meets ROOSEVELT meets (-tries to think-) OOH FASHION EXPERT EXTRAORDINARINESS. Because seriously? You should have seen her shoes. And her jewelry. And her dress. Yeah. All of that. She had on awesome black heels and tons of Clockwork Angel Jewelry (and maybe some other series jewelry) and an awesome green dress. 
The answers!
Someone asked her about her writing routine. She said she writes 2,000 words a day, plus she edits. And she's booked until 2012, but already has some ideas -- for a contemporary novel! -- and basically I love her. (My dad was very impressed by the booked until 2012 thing.) 
And she talked about her fanfiction days, which was fun. She talked about writing a Harry Potter piece where Harry blew up the school. And some lady told her she was credited with the idea that Harry and Ron should be together, and had she meant to be so influential, and Ms. Clare just started cracking up and saying that she thought it was an awful, awful idea.
And she met her agent through Holly Black, in a bar, but it was a literary bar, so that's cool.
And in other news, the fact that New York has LITERARY BARS makes me totally want to move there.
 Maybe I'll go to Columbia. If only I could pay 50k a semester.
OH OH. AND. She talked about how inkpop was the best thing for writers, but don't stress, because you can win it, but it's REALLY hard, but winning it is a wonderful step toward being a REAL HONEST TO GOODNESS WRITER.
-points at sidebar- -you know, where it points out that I got Top Five- 
-YAY- (Seriously, I felt very cool when she started talking about that.)
And the screen play for City Of Bones is written but went WAY over budget. That's why it's taking so long.
Cassandra Clare is my new favorite person. She talked about having to write millions of bad words before you write your first good word. AND the inspiration from Magnus came from a Korean magazine. OH. It took two and a half years to write COB. TWO AND A HALF YEARS. So, basically, I do'nt have to worry if I'm not awesome, rich and famous by twenty. (Even though that's three and a half years.)
Basically, the entire thing was awesome. There will be a gushing review of love for Clockwork Angel soon.
If there's anything you want to know, ask in the comments. Or gush. Or stab me with a fork because YAY I got to see Cassandra Clare!!!
More later.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Foreign Friday: City of Bones

Why City of Bones? Other than the fact that it's beautiful and awesome and has OMG JACE in it?
Well . . .
Because I -- yes, ME -- I get to go see Cassandra Clare tonight.
I am squealing. (On the inside. Actually aloud would be awkward at this exact moment. There are people around.)
I am SO excited. I'll have pictures this weekend. For now, here are the foreign covers!


Wow, this post is messy. Sorry. I have to go fast. I'll try and make it prettier tomorrow, but I'm on a time limit. Why?
Because I am off to see Cassandra Clare!