Book Review: Hero of the Empire by Candice Millard

I love reading. So does my father. Unfortunately, he has trouble staying awake when he picks up a book. So I was surprised when he said that for Christmas, he wanted a long book about history.

“I’d finish this one,” he said. “I wouldn’t fall asleep halfway through. It’s about Winston Churchill. It’s called Hero of the Empire.”

Read More »

Book Review: Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton

I’m terrible at watching movies. When I was little, I’d watch the same Zoboomafoo episodes on VHS over and over instead of normal childhood movies like The Little Mermaid. The result is that it’s only in the last few years that I’ve finally seen Star Wars, Finding Nemo, and The Princess Bride.

Jurassic Park is another one of those movies that everyone’s seen except for me. One of my good friends is a huge fan of it, and when I was at her house recently, she pressed a battered copy of the novel into my hands, assuring my sister and I that we’d love it. When she asked me if I did a few days ago, I had to be very diplomatic with my answer. But more on that later.

Read More »

The MoMo Method: How I Read Books, and Why

In which I outline the origin and reason (madness?) behind the way I read books.

A little less than two years ago, I was reading Jayber Crow by Wendell Berry. The book follows the life of a barber living in a tiny Kentucky town. Since the book is the tale of someone’s entire life, it’s long. 363 pages long. Not only is it long, it’s also dense, full of stories and people and long internal monologues that will make you cry and laugh and want to become a farmer.

Read More »

Confessions of a Reluctant Plantser

It is a period of civil war.

The universe of writers is divided under two banners, the Planners (those who outline their stories–also called Plotters) and Pantsers (those who write by the seat of their pants). Planners call Pantsers sloppy and undisciplined. Pantsers retort that Planners are control freaks and overachievers. A few traitorous double agents, the Plantsers, are the only overlap between the two groups.

Or, at least, that’s how I once saw it.

Read More »