What Writers Can Learn From Diana Gabaldon

Last Friday I posted “Loving Diana Gabaldon.”  It was general praise and admiration of the sort you might expect from that title. Today I want to cite some specific ways that writers would do well to follow her example. In particular, I will focus on vivid language. We have all heard or read that we should […]

Loving Diana Gabaldon

Yesterday I finished reading the fifth book in Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander series—The Fiery Cross—for the second time.   This is the one that begins in 1770, with Clare, Jamie, et al., in North Carolina—embroiled in the War of Regulation, early conflicts preceding the Revolutionary War. As with all the Gabaldon novels, it is an intriguing blend […]

The Gift of Rainy Days…

…is that they are the perfect excuse to read instead of weed!   The only question is, what shall I read? One favorite is a big, fat book to take me through the day and the rainy days to follow this week. According to the Guiness Book of World Records, Proust wrote the longest book […]

Besotted With Books

I did not grow up in a book house. In my earliest years, the only volumes we owned were a huge two-volume pictorial history of WWII and several Bibles. Dad subscribed to Field and Stream and Mom subscribed to True Confessions. So I wasn’t exposed to children’s books till I was in school and able to […]

Beware Head-Hopping

We all know about Point of View. It’s the narrator’s position in relation to the story being told.   With the objective POV, the writer tells the story entirely with action and dialogue. S/he never discloses anything about thoughts or feelings, leaving it for the reader to infer these from the dialogue and action. In […]

Without Books, TV Would Be Barren

  We tend to think of TV as something totally separate from literature. Not so! If you’ve enjoyed any of the following on TV, consider reading the books they are based on.   Homicide: Life on the Street, based on Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets by David Simon   Poldark, based on the Poldark Saga […]

Beach Reads vs. Reading at the Beach

Recommendations for great beach reads are everywhere, every year; they start in the spring and are often ongoing. Amazon gives us “Superbly Good Beach Reads” while Barnes and Noble more modestly lists “Beach Reads”—totally disinterested advice from both, of course! Real Simple gives us “The 20 Best New Paperback Beach Reads.” The Huffington Post published other people’s lists, […]

Radford Reads: Not Your Usual Book Festival!

Yes, the Radford Reads Festival had the expected panels, speakers, and workshops (which I’ll get to soon), but it had so much more–just ask any of the attendees who came for the classic cars. . . . . . or the blacksmithing, music, quilters, or Civil War reenactors. There were crafters selling soaps, lotions, jewelry, […]