I live in an active home and regretfully I have a difficult time reading or writing when there is noise. Since I can’t always get away from it, I put on my headphones and let instrumental music fill my mind instead so I can be free to read or write.
Accordingly, I wanted to share some of my favorites. I know there are countless examples of instrumental videos I could post but these are beautiful and long enough to serve the purposes I have in mind. I hope you find them helpful. Read more…
I hope your reading year has been a success. Mine has been extraordinary.
Every year, I write down the books that I read. Well, that is until Goodreads began doing it for me. Anyway, I always hope to reach 100 books but I’ve never done it before.
Yet, the mountain has been conquered! As of right now, I am at 134 and working on another one before the end of the year. Reaching this milestone has been a blessing.
I wanted to share the best fiction and non-fiction books that I have read this year.
You can see my love for international fiction. I just finished one from Iceland and reading one from Ghana. You get the joy of reading while learning about another culture. I highly recommend it. Read more…
I received this book in lieu of a review by Blogging for Books.
“Without You, There Is No Us: My Time with the Sons of North Korea’s Elite” by Suki Kim is a powerful, frightening true story about a brave young woman journalist who enlists her talents as a teacher to enter the claustrophobic country of North Korea.
The title is from the overall attitude that exists in the country. Without the government, the people would have nothing. This book serves as a cautionary tale for those who desire to give the government unlimited power. Read more…
Blogging for Books provided me a copy of “Dancing on the Head of a Pen: The Practice of a Writing Life” by Robert Benson in lieu of a review.
Benson is an experienced writer and the author of several books. This slim volume can be read in an hour or two. In it, he covers the mindset, persistence and imagination necessary to the life of a writer.
There aren’t really any new revelations here but Benson’s passion is infectious and writers can find an infusion of motivation here to help them persevere in the lonely work of writing.
His first chapter refers to writing as “the dark marks on a page,” and I really liked that imagery.
As an avid reader of history and literature, I increasingly combine them by turning to international fiction. I’ve lived in the United States all of my life. So why not learn about other cultures?
One day I can stroll the parched lands of Africa and the next, be whisked off to the snowy streets of Norway. Without leaving my favorite reading spot, I can wander all over the world learning new cultures. It’s like being an amateur anthropologist without leaving the couch. Read more…
I received this eBook in lieu of an honest review from Blogging for Books.
I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I’m doing research for a book dealing with the sea. So I thought I might find this interesting. Neil Swidey was obviously very devoted to this project and the people involved. His respect and passion were obvious throughout the story.
“If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write.” (Stephen King).
We cannot be effective writers unless we are fueled by powerful words. It’s impossible to overestimate the importance of filling our minds with quality writing. Learning from the best accelerates our own growth as a writer.
When we read the best, we accomplish several things.