Tuesday, January 30, 2007

I'm an eBook fan!

I have numerous bookshelves in my home, and I use spots (such as the ample space atop my kitchen cabinets) to store books as well. My children’s friends call our house “the library” which is a better label for it than “a messy house,” which is how hubby views it.

However, I do tend to let the paperbacks and hardcovers stack up, while I read all of the eBooks I can get onto my PDA. That is in part due to having it with me— I usually tuck my Palm into my purse, so wherever I am, I have those eBooks. Last week, I was at my doctor’s office for my annual physical, and they were just a bit behind, so the visit took up over two hours, and I spent quite a bit of that time reading. (Regs, by Nina Osier, a science fiction book which really made me say, “Wow!” and I don’t do that often.) The Palm had seventy seven titles on it the last time I looked, and most of those are novels, rather than short fiction. Try putting seventy paperbacks in your purse....

Yes, I have Marjorie Liu’s new paranormal romance in my TBR stack, but it was Osier’s book which got the nod, and that was due to it being in electronic format. I have a borrowed novelization of the life of Mary Magdalene which I do want to read as well, but it is large and heavy, so it is gathering dust. Instead, I just began reading a new Angela Verdenius eBook, which I had with me while I was waiting for my kids to emerge from school.

Some of my friends and relatives look at me as if I have lost my mind when I tell them that I prefer eBooks, but the truth is the number of unread titles on my Palm is fewer than five, and the number in my TBR stack on the shelves at my house is a tall stack (and it is growing). Actually, there are too many to put in one spot, but let’s just say that I have quite a few.

My friend, Malcolm Campbell, recently commented on eBooks as well, and he makes a case for them, but in a different way. Do take a look at his entry posted as Trick Falls.

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Monday, January 15, 2007

Best Websites for News Junkies

I’ve been interviewed a couple of times about my writing, and when asked where I get some of the weird ideas for my fiction, I often cite the news. Universally, folks seem to think that’s a weird answer, but I really do read a good bit of news, and I don’t always read it at the usual spots. Here are some of my favorites, with links for anyone interested.

Wired.com is quite an interesting site. Instead of dangling a few free stories and trying to sell a subscription for the real content, Wired has up-to-date information regarding our more and more interconnected world, and articles from the current issue are available online. This is one of the best free sites available for those who are interested in keeping up with technology as it affects our lives.

Boortz.com is the site of talk radio host Neal Boortz. This guy is amazing, and since I don’t listen every day, I like the way he has comprehensive notes on his website for each day he is on the air (and that’s most weekdays) and his staff posts some really interesting “reading assignments” which are links to current information on a variety of subjects. Neal is a somewhat conservative libertarian, so if you have strong liberal leanings, you might not like this site, but even when I disagree, this dude makes me think, and that’s something I like quite a lot.

The Buzz at AZCentral is a section devoted to offbeat news from around the country. Other sites have such stories, of course, but this one is the most comprehensive. Some of these stories are a real hoot, and others just leave you shaking your head. “Truth is stranger that fiction” is a cliché for a reason!

CNet Future Tech Blog
is one part of the giant CNet site, which is one of my favorite spots. However, for anyone interested in writing science fiction, there is a real necessity to keep up with what pieces of technology are likely to become part of our lives. This site will keep you informed regarding tech, with a more practical slant than that of Wired.

I always read Peggy Noonan’s column in the Wall Street Journal online. The WSJ has a subscription they want to sell, but you can get a certain amount of content for free, and right now, Noonan’s column is part of that. She is one of the most thoughtful, best writers in journalism, so her Friday columns are a treat.

Apart from those, I often read local news, just to stay informed about local politics and so forth.

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Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Trinity on Tylos on YouTube

Welcome to my first entry in ’07. Since you are reading a blog, it is safe to assume some interest in technology, especially computers, so I begin with that subject.

After watching a five minute video my daughter did for one of her classes, I decided to try my hand at doing a short film myself. The result is three and a half minutes of “book trailer” which I rendered in iMovie and recently uploaded to YouTube.

This is really an exercise to help me learn more about using iMovie, but I’ve wanted another way to introduce potential readers to my science fiction novel, so the subject matter for my video seemed natural.

Send the link to your friends, and let me know what you think of my first try at creating a book trailer.

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