Posts Tagged ‘reading’

May 11, 2012



Everyone says writers need to read anything and everything they can get their hands on.

I’m sure they’re right. When I was younger, my nose was always buried in a book. Reading was my favorite free-time activity.

Nowadays, with a full-time job and a Boyfriend, I have a lot less free time. The time I do have tends to be devoted to things like cooking, eating or playing online. Most of my reading is confined to blogs. A few of them deal with writing, but since I’m still trying to lose about 50 pounds, the majority are healthy living blogs.

As a result, I know about 500 workout tips and 1,002 different ways to make oatmeal — good for my diet/health, but it doesn’t do much for my creativity.

The precious little time I have left after working and taking care of the business of life, I tend to want to spend writing my own books, not reading someone else’s. Sure, I tweet my #FridayReads when I think about it — but if you’re paying attention, you’ll notice I often  tweet the same book several weeks straight.

But with so many of my Starcatcher sisters’ stories hitting the market, there are a lot of great new reads I don’t want to miss. I’d start naming some of them, but I’m afraid I’d miss too many. We’re a talented group.

With e-readers putting books at my fingertips 24/7, there’s no excuse not to read them. I already own a Nook, and I finally broke down and put the Kindle app on my phone, too. Now I can download some of the free books tweeted by some of the authors I follow.

Since downloading the Kindle app, I’ve devoured GH winner Laurie Kellogg’s “A Little Bit of Deja Vu” and am more than halfway through Juli Alexander’s “My Life as the Ugly Stepsister.”

I’ve been sneaking a few pages while standing in line at the grocery store and bank, or while I’m in the bathroom at work. (Shh … don’t tell.)

Now that I’m reading books as often as blogs, I look forward to crossing a lot more titles off my TBR list. You can follow my reads — and my progress on the 2012 reading challenge — on Goodreads. (I originally set a goal of 26 books for the year, but now that I’ve rediscovered the joy of reading, I hope to read a lot more than that.)

April 6, 2012


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Twitter is abuzz. Bloggers are raving. Last night I read a story on a mainstream wire service talking it up. (I’m debating whether I can get away with running it on our books page without causing an uproar.)

What has everyone so hot and bothered? “Fifty Shades of Grey.”

I enjoy a good, steamy story as much as the next gal. And the article did an excellent job of making the book sound intriguing.

However, I’ve also heard/read that it got its start as “Twilight” fan fiction. Since I couldn’t get through any of the “Twilight” books, that makes me leery.

Hold onto your rotten tomatoes, please, and save your breath. You’ll never change my mind about Bella and company.

But I will take your advice, writer friends, about “Fifty Shades of Grey.” What say you? Should I spend valuable free time reading it or give it (and its sequels) a miss?

September 8, 2011


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… Not writing it, thank goodness. Although I love watching “Dateline” and other true-crime shows on Investigation Discovery (“Deadly Women,” anyone?), I don’t think I have the chops to write RS. Keeping that thread of danger running throughout isn’t for me.

However, I can enjoy reading romantic suspense, when I’m in a certain mood. (That’s the way I am with historicals, too. I love to read them when I’m in the mood.) And I have just the book to put me in that mood: NARWA president Anne Marie Becker’s new Carina Press release, “Only Fear.”

The blurb:

After a violent incident with a patient leaves scars on both her mind and body, psychiatrist Dr. Maggie Levine craves isolation. A radio talk show host seems to be the perfect profession, a job where she can help people from a distance while staying safe. When a strange caller begins stalking her on the air and murdering people to get her attention, Maggie realizes she can no longer close herself off from the outside world.

A personal security expert, former Secret Service Agent Ethan Townsend is no stranger to tracking down the most violent monsters of society and bringing them to justice. Still, it will take all of Ethan’s skills to protect his new assignment, the irresistible Maggie, from a man intent on teaching her the ultimate lesson in fear…

Sounds intriguing, right?

“Only Fear” stands alone, but is the first book in a planned series revolving around the employees of the Society for the Study of the Aberrant Mind (SSAM).

“I was excited to hear that Carina Press would like to work with me on the series I have planned. We’ve even come up with a name: the Mindhunters,” Anne Marie said.

She hopes to have the second book in the series, tentatively titled “Avenging Angel,” submitted by the end of September for a summer 2012 release.

You can order “Only Fear” at Amazon, Barnes & Noble or Carina Press.

Connect with Anne Marie:

Twitter: @annemariebecker
Facebook:  AnneMarieBeckerAuthor
Blogs:  Not Your Usual Suspects (Carina Press suspense authors): and The Ruby Slippered Sisterhood:

July 31, 2011

about, Musings



This is only part of my TBR pile ...

Today, we’re going to delve into all your dirty little secrets — reading secrets, that is.

When Gwen Hernandez, one of my Starcatcher sisters, posted about sometimes not finishing a book she’s started, it got me thinking.

Her argument against slogging through something she’s not into:

Why waste valuable hours reading a book I don’t enjoy?

It makes complete sense. As we all know, there are only so many hours in the day. When we’re trying to write, work out, cook, tend to the day job  — and families if we have them — it leaves precious little leisure time for reading.

Yet I’m one of those people who slogs through every book I start. It may take me a while to pull it off my TBR pile, but once I have a book in my hand, I finish the darn thing. Even if it takes me a month … or I’d rather be visiting the dentist than reading it …

I’m not sure where this attitude comes from. Maybe it’s a remnant from my college days, when reading was my job. As a journalism major who took a lot of English lit and creative writing classes, I read tons. Even the semester I spent in England, when I probably should have been focused on exploring a foreign country, I took a full course load that included French lit, Literature and Politics, and Shakespeare. (I couldn’t pass up the chance to take a class on Shakespeare in England, from a British prof, now could I?)

Maybe it’s just what I refer to as my good, old-fashioned Midwestern work ethic. I also can’t call in sick when I’m not really sick. Heck, I work even when I’m sick … I have to be in bed, unable to move, before I throw in the towel and take a sick day.

Whatever the reason, I finish the books I start. It’s a good thing, then, that I tend to only start books I know I’ll enjoy. I usually stick with contemporary and historical romances, with the occasional weighty  book club pick.

Hmm. Now that I think about it, I can’t say I always finish the books I start. Sometimes I don’t finish my book club selections. Case in point: “Edgar Sawtelle.” I don’t care if it was one of Oprah’s picks, I didn’t like it. Too lyrical— and it was obviously heading toward a bad end, seeing as it was a modern retelling of “Hamlet” (one of my favorite Shakespeare plays, by the way.) Trudy and Claude? Please.

How about you? Do you finish the books you start? Or do you refuse to waste time on books that don’t hold your interest?

I want to know!