Lessons from My Reading

M. K. Theodoratus, Fantasy Writer, blogs about the books she reads--mostly fantasy and mystery authors whose books catch her eye and keep her interest. Nothing so formal as a book review, just chats about what she liked. Theodoratus also mutters about her own writing progress or ... lack of it.

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Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Odd Thoughts from the To-Read Pile

The Read ...
Dean Koontz's Odd Thomas books have been sitting on a dust-gathering to-read pile for months.  [I don't think it's years.]  Don't remember how it happened, but while in the first third of reading another book I liked, I picked up Forever Odd, a thriller/mystery fantasy ... or something ... and finish it instead of the first book.

Did Odd Thomas start out with a clash of action or a hooking sentence?  No.  The opening is a rather gentle description of a desert storm with some back story Koontz doesn't particularly explain.  The storm comes back later to complicate the action ... so it wasn't a useless beginning, but you don't know that when flipping through the first pages.

The story picks up speed on the second page when the ghost of a friend's murdered father appears and guides Odd to the crime scene.  The real villain, a doozy of a psychopath, doesn't appear until about a third of the way into the book ... even though Koontz hints at her existence.  Once, all the players are gathered at a ruined casino, the book creates a great cat and mouse game ... with all the pieces foreshadowed as far as I could see.

So, here's another slow-starting book that builds its world and conflicts brick by brick until the climax gets washed away in the storm.  Masterful.  I may have to read Forever Odd again to study it ... or you may just get me commenting on another book in the series.  Seems I've bought several of them after reading Brother Odd.

Web and Other Stuff ...
Writer Beware linked to a blog by Emily Steel about Marketeers Testing Ads on/in e-books.  Just another example that 1) you lease an e-book and 2) you can't escape corporate cajoling ... enticing ...  luring ... ??? 

On a happier note:  Here's a Holiday present.  Mia Theodoratus playing pieces of her wedding album on TuneCore.  Scroll down for the link if this doesn't take you directly to her.  Yes, I'm the proud mommy.  [If you don't do Facebook, you can Goggle her name and still listen to excepts of her music.]

Wondering about characterization?  Jaime Reed in her blog "Write or Die" has some pointed comments about the place of Bad Boys in our characters' lives.

Progress ...
Have my critiques caught up.  Just have to reread them to get rid of the typos.  I think I wash my hands too much and can't type a thing with them.

Have book-length revisions [Emma and Voices of Ghost Creek] to play with, but I'm dinking around with a short story which "everyone" seems to think is the start of something longer.  Darn it, I'm trying to squeeze it into a short story format ... and I have the words left to do it since additions have increased the length to 2500 words.  Someday, I might even decided on which title to use.  At the moment, I leaning towards:  "The Noticing One", a soft horror story.  Can't wait until my critique group puts me on the hot seat.

Next on my list:  revise a Renna tale.  Hope to have it up before Christmas.

Trivia ...
Everything is slowing down as I slide to the end of the year.
Am happy to retain our middle class status for another year, but see doom down the road.
 
PS...
Must mention Igor Glushkin's artwork on my website.  Why don't you follow the link and flip a few pages.  I like the dark edge he gives my Half-Elven.   
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