The Sunday Salon – November 15, 2010 (the “I failed at NaNoWriMo – again” edition)

The Sunday Salon.com

I have discovered something about myself during the past two weeks. I can’t stop reading in order to write. I don’t mean that I literally can’t put a book down and open my laptop. But when I have a limited amount of free time – and during our homeschooling year, that’s pretty much the case all of the time – I can’t just not read so that I can write. If I do, I get very cranky and I don’t like my life anymore. Reading is a necessity for me – for my mood, my sanity, for my children’s and husband’s sakes.

So, I’m hoping that at some point there will be a NaNoWriMo during our summer break, but for now, I’m admitting defeat. The homeschooling takes up enough time, but then you throw in Natalie’s IV infusion treatment in Spokane, orthodontist and eye doctor appointments, Josiah’s 9th birthday party (which was Friday) and now Thanksgiving coming soon – you get the picture.

While I haven’t been writing, though, I have been reading – and reading some great books. I finished Dave Cullen’s Columbine in three days after reading Jen’s wonderful review at Literate Housewife as well as her follow-up post. I also encourage you to read Sandy’s review. These ladies did such a fantastic job of reviewing a book that is so well-researched, brilliantly written and horrifically disturbing that I’m not even going to try. I will say that if you think you know why the Columbine massacre happened and the facts of what happened on that day, you’re probably wrong. I certainly was. This book disturbed me in a way that no other book has in a long, long time. It should be required reading for teachers and all members of law enforcement.

On a much lighter note, I listened to both Shiver and Linger by Maggie Stiefvater on audio – amazing, wonderful, can’t wait for book three!

Right now, I’m reading What I Thought I Knew by Alice Eve Cohen and How to Be an American Housewife by Margaret Dilloway in print, and listening to Torment by Lauren Kate and Shoulder the Sky by Anne Perry on audio.

I also spent some time last night and today putting together a new page called Series Reading. It basically takes my post listing all the series I’m reading to another level – listing all the series with their associated web sites and all titles listed in order, marking off the ones I’ve read so far. I’m also going to go through and add release dates for upcoming titles – but that will take a while.

So, what are you reading this Sunday? Do you read anything special during the holiday season?

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24 Responses to The Sunday Salon – November 15, 2010 (the “I failed at NaNoWriMo – again” edition)

  1. Marie says:

    I don’t blame you. I have to put time aside specifically for writing. It’s not easy.

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies
      says:

      Marie – no, it isn’t! My friend mentioned that she thought they were considering doing a NoNoWriMo – choose your month – program, and if so, I will definitely be giving it another try in the summer!

  2. unfinishedperson
    Twitter: unfnshdprsn
    says:

    I’ve been wanting to read some nonfiction recently…maybe Columbine would fit just the bill.

    As for what I’m reading, I’m reading the first Charlie Chan mystery, A House Without A Key, tonight and enjoying it. I’m going to try reading it while listening to the Steelers/Patriots game. We’ll see how that goes. 🙂

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies
      says:

      Bryan – Columbine is some of the most disturbing and yet extremely page-turning non-fiction I’ve ever read. And the thing I miss most about not having TV anymore is my Seahawks games. Or, maybe I should say, I miss them about half the time – like when they play as well as they did today!

  3. Vasilly
    Twitter: Vasilly
    says:

    Sounds like you’ve been on a reading roll! I failed NaNoWriMo too. When I wanted to write, I felt myself being pulled to read instead. I’ve been so distracted lately that I haven’t been reading though.

    I already have my Christmas tree up. Yay! 😀 My only plans really are to get all of my shopping done before December! 😉

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies
      says:

      Vasilly – don’t talk Christmas shopping yet, please! I haven’t even started…. 🙂

  4. You know it sounds like there is so much going on in your life that you need whatever positive escape you can find. Read away and don’t worry about Nanowrimo – it’s not that you abandoned it, you just decided that other priorities, like sanity, were higher up. Fangs, Wands and Fairy Dust
    email: steph@fangswandsandfairydust.com
    twitter: @fangswandsfairy

  5. Marg
    Twitter: MargReads
    says:

    I love the idea of a series reading page, but wow that would be a lot of work to put together! I keep track of this in a excel spreadsheet instead.

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies
      says:

      Marg – it did take some time, but since it was pretty mindless work, I listened to an audiobook at the same time. 🙂

  6. Hey, at least you gave it a shot! I don’t think I could give up reading either. I just started Christmas Mourning.

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies
      says:

      Kathy – I haven’t heard of that mystery series before – there are so many, I can’t keep track! Is it a good series?

  7. NaNoWriMo would be to me like announcing I’m going on a diet. The very fact of setting up the expectation would be enough to lead me to fail! But as you said to Marie, if you pick your own time frame that would lessen the pressure a lot. November is such a crazy month anyway with all the holidays!

    I love the idea you have about the Series Reading page!

  8. Michelle says:

    You already know I love your idea of the series reading page. It’s a great addition to your site! Especially for a person who loves series reading just as much as you do. 🙂

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies
      says:

      Michelle – I have a feeling if we ever compared notes, we’d both find so many new series to try we’d never have time to read any stand-alone books!

  9. Stephanie says:

    Columbine was such a haunting book. I was enthralled with it, which surprised me because I thought I knew a lot about the shooting and would therefore be bored with the book. That was definitely not the case!

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies
      says:

      Stephanie – it certainly seems the media isn’t very good at correcting mistakes once a story has moved off the front page. I’m glad that Mr. Cullen was compelled to write the truth.

  10. Dave Cullen, author of Columbine
    Twitter: davecullen
    says:

    CarrieK, wow, you’ve got lot on your plate. Sounds like summer might be a much better bet for you. I wouldn’t wait for them to create a NaNoWriMo when you need it–create your own.

    I’m glad to see you have the instinct/need to keep reading, though. It nourishes the soul. Oddly enough, your description resonated exactly with how I get when I don’t write for a week or two. It’s in me now–I can’t stop.

    And I was delighted to see that Jen’s really nice posts led you to read my book, Columbine–and that you liked it. (And that you continued to spread the word here. It’s been interesting to watch how people actually discover my book, often in a chain this way. I’ve learned a lot in the past year.)

    For any students, profs or teachers out there, we just finished the Columbine Instructors Guide and Columbine Student Guide (Whew! Glad those are done. Way more work than I envisioned. But worth it if they help.) The Columbine intro video is also a good place to start.

    Stephanie, thanks for reading, too.

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies
      says:

      Mr. Cullen – thank you for stopping by and leaving those links – they are important. I have already spent a good deal of time poking around your site after finishing the book. I am no determined to buy a paperback copy so I can read the new Afterword. Thank you for putting in so many years on such an important book.

  11. Kathleen says:

    I’m with you, I get VERY cranky when I don’t have time to read. Wasn’t Columbine phenomenal? That book still has me thinking and with my son in high school, it really hits close to home.

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies
      says:

      Kathleen – it was very disturbing. I’m glad I read it, but will admit that it still has me up nights.

  12. Samantha says:

    Reading is my sanity as well 🙂 And I’m so glad to hear that you enjoyed Columbine so much…it is a book that I have had my eye on for awhile now. I’m just a little nervous to read it as well.