Book Review: Lincoln in the Bardo

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George Saunders’s critically-acclaimed first novel, Lincoln in the Bardo, is the story Abraham Lincoln’s recently deceased son, Willie, and the events that preceded and followed his death. Set primarily in the graveyard in which Willie is buried, this novel is told from the perspective of multiple other people, some real and some fictional, some alive and some dead, with very few pages of Willie’s own perspective. It is the story of a grieving man, a loyal son, and some hopelessly obstinate ghosts.

Slight spoilers ahead. (more…)

Beautiful People: Emily Catherine Harlowe

Beautiful People is a link-up hosted by Sky at Further Up and Further In and Kait at Paper Fury, and it’s a wonderful thing. I did one before (though it was almost a year after the questions had been posted), and with any luck, I will manage to keep it up every month, or somewhere thereabouts. With my track record, that’s not likely. But anything is possible!

This month’s is parental-themed, so I tried to think through any of my characters who actually currently have a relationship with their parents. Or even have parents that were mentioned in the story. So of course, I remembered the novel I’m trying to forget for long enough that I can eventually return to edit it: Hawke. I’m breaking my rule for this post, because parental influences are, like, the main theme in this book after terrible decisions. Without further ado, here goes. (more…)

Lists, Lists, Lists

Searching the Internet for things to blog about is like trying to relieve your frustration by pounding on a punching bag made of memory foam. It’s useless, a little painful, and not at all satisfying. So then I remembered that’s what I started my endless A-Z challenge for. With that in mind,

L is for lists.

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MBTI and Writing

So I have a theory. Actually, I have two theories that melded into one. Or rather, one theory that branched off two ways? I’m not totally sure, because it all happened at one time in my brain. So maybe it’s a hundred little theories all coming together into this one blog post. Whatever. You don’t care.

My theory is this: Your strengths as a writer can be determined through your Myers-Briggs personality type. I mean, obviously, right? Your personality influences how you see the world. But what if it could be broken down so that each strength was attached to one specific part of your personality? (more…)

Beautiful People: Delilah Jane Houston

I love writing. It’s frustrating, impossible, irritating, and often painful, and the end product is never actually completed. It’s great. I’ve been working on a few stories (with plots that form as they go), but for some reason today my brain refuses to get into the writing mode. Enter beautiful people:

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“Yes, it is true,” he was saying, “that sometimes unusually intelligent and sensitive children can appear to be stupid. But, Mrs. Benson, stupid children can sometimes appear to be stupid as well. I think that’s something you might have to consider. I know it’s very painful, yes. Good day, Mrs. Benson.”

—Douglas Adams, The Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul