Saturday, October 24, 2009

I'm a Professional. I've Had Three Performances.



"President" or "precedent," which one?

Yay! Friday night, w00t w00t! [Dave does the Happy Friday Dance...] Yes, I realize by the time you read this, it will be Saturday Morning, I get it. So even though the Happy Saturday Dance is more appropriate for you at the moment, it is illegal in California to do the Happy Saturday Dance on a Friday Night. I could get jail time and a still fine. You wouldn't want that, now, would you...

I have a book review for you. Gee, ain't you all happy-like?

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A Shadow In Summer, by Daniel Abraham: A Review



Yawn. I wish I'd done a little bit of digging on this series before reading it. I frequent a forum on the Amazon.com forum for A Dance with Dragons, thinking I can keep up to date on the progress (if any) of GRRM's magnum opus. One of the threads in this forum is called "What To Read While You Wait," which had many different authors and series to look into, that people who are familiar with the genre also enjoyed. The Long Price Quartet was recommended several times, so I added it to my short list. If I had taken the next step and gone to the actual reader reviews of the book, I would have seen the many, many posts that said what I'm going to tell you here. The book is a snooze.

Those that defend the book say things like "A great series, if you're not looking for action." lol, nice. The usual litany of bizarre fantasy names are present for roll call: Otah, Maati, Liat, Amat, Heshai, Marchat, as well as a sprinkling of likewise-weird town names, such as the capital city of Saraykeht, where 95% of the action takes place. Or rather, 95% of the inaction.

Otah begins the book as a child, in training to become a poet, which in this case has a supernatural application. Somehow, a poet can capture an idea and have it become personified (so it walks around as a person) and its power is based around its concept. Such a creature is called an andat. Sounded interesting, but really, in execution it left a lot to be desired. The only "andat" in the story is one called Seedless, and he/it is primarily used to magically remove the cotton seeds from the yearly cotton harvest, thus making spinning it a faster process, so that the city can beat other cities to market, earning dough. It's a trade thing.

Uh.... ok.

He is also used to cause a woman to miscarry her baby, and for reasons I still can't quite understand, it becomes a big scandal which could lead to war. Yeah, go figure.

The poet that had created Seedless the Andat is called Heshai, and he's lame. Maati is his apprentice. Liat is the lover of both Otah and Maati. The more I type, the stronger my desire is to end this review. There is no point whatsoever in going on about a boring and illogical plot if I know for a fact that none of you will be reading it. Apparently, it is the first book in a four book series. Needless to say, I will not be proceeding. With all due respect to Mr. Abraham, if this is what passes for a publishable book nowadays, I think I'll give it a shot indeed...

Summary: 2.5/5 Yawn.

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There's about a week left before I start work on my NaNoWriMo book. I think I will forego starting a new series for now, and instead devote the next week's reading time to working on as detailed an outline as I can for the writing project. In fact, I make shake up my blog writing schedule as well. Back when I started - and made great progress on - my first novel attempt (The Master's Program), I would wake up at 6 am, journal for 15 minutes, then write on the novel until 7:30 am, shower, and go to work. It was actually a terrific routine. I think I will attempt it again. Of course, that will require going to bed much earlier each night - definitely no later than midnight - hopefully earlier. I usually blog between 10pm and midnight each night... believe it or not, it takes quite a bit out of me, and I need some unwind time afterwards, since my brain is usually in sensory overdrive. Then I read. That usually puts me to bed about 2:30 to 3:30 am.

Anyway, I may experiment with a different blogging time - maybe mid morning after I work on the novel. That way I can get my unwind/read time in and still be able to get to bed at a reasonable hour...

That's the end of that conversation...

Funny Picture Time:



Haduken! Actually, I think only Vye and Joe and maybe Shannon will think that's funny... I better try another one, just in case...



I'd like to see the Great Leslie try that! Hmmm... laughing at other people's pain isn't everyone's cup of tea either... well, third time's a charm...



Yes, Sir, the worst accident I ever seen... OK, so we hit the anime fans, the masochists, and those with gross tendencies... I guess that leaves those who like cute animal pictures...


There, that should cover everybody. Well, Smitty, some things get meaner as they get older...

Before I go, I have to do a public service announcement. If keeping the difference between "left wing" politics and "right wing" politics straight in your head is difficult, or if you are unsure where exactly you fall on the spectrum, I found this interesting infographic that might be of service. I'll post a small(er) version of it here, with a link to a bigger version on a website. Take a look at it - it is actually very well done.


It's actually a very interesting study, and I think it pretty much nails it. I'd be interested in hearing what you think about it (especially Josh, if he's floating around).

If politics isn't your thing, you could always try Bucky Balls...



I swear I've seen a lot of stuff in my life, but that... was... *awesome*. I'm thinking of ordering some. Come on, everyone loves playing with magnets...

I guess I'm out. As much fun as I've had on this little journey, I'm sure one day I'll look back on it and laugh. Until tomorrow, remember, there's nothing wrong with going nowhere, son. It's a privilege of youth.

24 comments:

Bob said...

Speedround!!!!!

"point me towards danger, Azeem, I'm ready" is from Robin Hood

Bob said...

"I am to be described as "robust" and "healthy" = Sum of All Fears

Bob said...

"See, I'm a man of simple tastes, I like dynamite, and gunpowder." is from The Dark Knight (didn't even need Google for that one :P)

Bob said...

"I respect the mind's power over the body. It's why I do what I do." is from Batman Begins

Bob said...

"I'm gonna go get some Post-It notes, do you want one" is from Wanted (great movie, btw)

Bob said...

Today's quotes:

title is from The Muppet Movie

Bob said...

"Well, Smitty, some things get meaner as they get older" is from The Gumball Rally

Bob said...

"As much fun as I've had on this little journey, I'm sure one day I'll look back on it and laugh" is from Planes, Trains & Automobiles

Bob said...

I really don't have a clue what connect all the movies... perhaps that they are all comedies??? :SS

Krista said...

OMG, BOB! That's just insane! You are gonna kick my butt! Do you ever sleep!

Krista said...

"Yes, Sir, the worst accident I ever seen"--Pee-wee's Big Adventure

"there's nothing wrong with going nowhere, son. It's a privilege of youth."--Fandango

"I swear I've seen a lot of stuff in my life"-- Tommy Boy

Man, now I have to go find some speed round quotes just to catch up again! Man, you are one tough puppy BOBO! :) You're good, I give ya that. :)

havah said...

Beautiful start-up shot, as always :)

Thanks for the book review. I doubt I would have read it anyway. ;)

I haven't done a thing to plan for NaNoWriMo other to acknowledge it's existence. Thank God breathing is involuntary.

That first funny pic was really well taken. And yes, I like the cute fuzzy animal one. But the sicko-lantern is the best. *L*

I sent the L vs R graphic to my family. Very cool. Why don't they have stuff like that in school?

Those BuckyBalls remind me of some toys I saw on one of those shopping channels once. Let me see if I can find them....hold on...Okay, they don't have a website yet, but they're available on lots of other sites. Here's a quick ad on youtube. I wish I'd had toys like that! Magformers

Oh, and Dave...check your FB :D

havah said...

Oops, that should be "I haven't done a thing to plan for NaNoWriMo other THAN to acknowledge it's existence."

David Wagner said...

25 Speed Round points for Bob! 15 Points for todays' quotes! Dang, both barrels... nicely done!

15 points for Krista... care to puzzle out the theme? Good luck! Bob's a quote beast...

Havah, gonna check out the magformers, thx for the link. Are you just going to wing your novel, then? It'll probably be awesome, regardless...

Abbie said...

dave, those bucky balls are amazing!! I so totally want some, LOL!! But, I'd change their name, haha :)

uhhh, dave... Maybe that wasn't your intended theme, but they ARE all comedies, like Bob said...

David Wagner said...

nope on the theme again... there's a particular sub-genre that they all fit into...

Abbie said...

alright, is it comedies that all involve road trips?

David Wagner said...

10 points for Abbie! Although not all of the films I quoted are from comedies, they are all road trip movies. Care to grab a lingering quote or two..?

Abbie said...

eh, nah... i'll leave them for Krista so she can catch up to bob :)

Krista said...

Ah, thanks Abbie! Lets just hope I can grab'em before all mighty Bobo does... :)

Heh, it's 1:20ish here, so I'm going to go ahead and steal'em before Bob wakes up! :)

"I'd like to see the Great Leslie try that!"-- The Great Race

havah said...

"Winging it" sounds so much better than "bumbling through it"...but yes, that's pretty much what I'm going to do. Assuming I actually do anything. I figure if I just write, something half decent will come out maybe three-quarters of the way through. ;)

Ugh! I'm a disgrace to the writing profession.

David Wagner said...

5 more points for Krista!

Havah, whatever you write, I'll prepare you for what my reply will be... *ahem*... "Lemme read it, lemme read it, lemme read it!!!1!"""

havah said...

I added you as a writing buddy, Dave :)

(Of course, I sucked as a blog buddy, but still...)

Avari said...

That is an awesome picture!!! They captured it just perfectly, with the guy flying back! awesome!