This weekend is full of activities at the Beverly Hills Literary Escape. I’ll have lots to write about in the future, until then here’s another book domino video for your literary entertainment. Carefully watch the entire screen, there are lines of books falling everywhere.
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So Kim’s been off exploring the United Kingdom (but she’s such a good person that she left a bunch of posts for me to put on the blog while she’s gone, so you probably haven’t even missed her). Anyway, among the many cool and literary places she’s visiting is Bath, famous to most of us as the setting of many a Jane Austen scene. I’m sure she’ll have a lot to write about Bath and Austen when she gets back, but until then you can get your Austen fix with the following video which is incredibly wonderful and funny and brilliant and nuts. My brother-in-law sent this to me originally and I loved it on first sight.
My favorite line? ”Is that your blood?” ”Oh . . . yes, some of it.”
I feel fairly certain Jane would have loved this.
As anyone knows who’s read my post on the funniest novels picked by the writers of The Simpsons, there’s only one prime-time animated show that has my allegiance–the one that puts food on our table. But I have a teenage son and that teenage son insists on watching The Family Guy. Traitor.
On the other hand, he brought this clip to my attention. Admittedly it’s about writing, not about bookstores, but I defy you not to laugh. Watch it two or three times. I’ve seen it like ten times and it still cracks me up.
It speaks to a basic human truth: we’re all working on our novels, aren’t we?
Note: I can’t get it to embed–rats. I’ll keep working on it, but until then, click on this link if you want a smile to send you happily off into what I hope is a wonderful summer weekend!
Wait, maybe this will work (thanks, Kim).
I don’t make a habit of telling people they need to read certain books. Chacun a son gout, I always say, which, roughly translated, means something about how gout is a genetic disease you can pass on to your son.
Seriously, people’s tastes are so drastically different you have to know your audience. My father told me to read Elegance of the Hedgehog because he loved it, so I borrowed Kim’s copy. When I returned it to her, admitting I had given up halfway through because it was so much NOT my kind of book, she laughed and said, “You’ll notice I didn’t tell you you should read it. I didn’t think you’d like it.” Kim knows me well enough to know what to recommend to me–and what not. For instance, every good friend or relative of mine knows never to tell me to read a book where a child gets bullied or abused in any way, because I won’t sleep for a month, and I’ll blame them.
And I know Kim doesn’t share my love for graphic novels or fantasy, so I wouldn’t go around telling her to read any of my favorites, although I will rush to tell my sister or my oldest son about any new good one, since they love that stuff too.
But I’m reading a book right now that I think anyone who’s into books at all would enjoy. It’s funny, for one thing–and who among us can’t use a good laugh right around now? Can’t think of a soul–but even more importantly, it has insights about publishing and book-writing that are so unbelievably on target, it’s basically a primer in how to write and sell books.
The book is How I Became a Famous Novelist by Steve Hely. (Full disclosure: my husband’s met Hely a few times and they have some mutual friends, which is why he read the book in the first place and passed it on to me. But I’ve never even met the guy and, sadly, I don’t get any commission or recognition for recommending his book. Of course, if Steve reads this post and wants to send me a muffin basket, I’ll be all “STEVE! BUDDY!” so I hope someone sends it on to him and he feels inspired . . .)
Most of this book is laugh out loud funny–when Rob was lying on the bed, reading the book to himself, I got annoyed at how often he’d chortle. I think that’s rude if no one else can share the joke, don’t you? (Note: it isn’t rude when I do it.) Pete, the protagonist, is stuck in a dead-end job, but when his former girlfriend invites him to her wedding, he realizes he needs to become a success before then. He decides he’ll write a best-selling book and sets about figuring a formula that will work for him. Read the rest of this entry »