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1. Bruce Timm Creating Virtual Reality Batcave From ‘Batman: The Animated Series’

Bruce Timm is working with tech company Otoy to recreate the Batcave from "Batman: The Animated Series" as an immersive entertainment experience.

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2. Want Fun Thanksgiving Ideas to Bring the Family Together? Go Vintage!

by Sally Matheny


Norman Rockwell's Freedom from Want

    Searching for fun ideas that will bring the family together this Thanksgiving? Me, too. My family doesn’t know it yet, but I plan to go vintage this year.


     I love traditions, especially during holidays. However, our current technology is threatening to exterminate one of our most cherished traditions—family time. This post is not a ranting against technology. I’m actually thankful for it. It actually keeps me connected to family and friends.


     However, when we are able to come together in the same place, I want face-to-face, heart-to-heart, talking, laughing, and everyone-fully-engaged-time.


     So, we’re going vintage—the pre-cell phone, pre-computer, pre-iPod, pre-satellite dish, pre-electronic gaming system era. 


     True vintage items must be at least fifty years old. Some may say we’re going prehistoric!


     No need to panic. You may be surprised how long many of your favorite things have been around!
Family Time?

 

     Want to go vintage with us? Challenge your friends and family to turn off the distractions for at least three hours this Thanksgiving. Focus your full attention on the people that are gathered in your presence and enjoy the blessings. 

     

     The idea is to find something all ages can do together. Conversations are always nice, but games, crafts, and other activities are fun, too. Older folks can teach the younger ones, and vice versa! 


Here are some vintage ideas to get you started:

 

Vintage Board Games:

Scrabble, Candyland, Chutes & Ladders, Clue, Monopoly, Rick, Life, Operation, checkers, Stratego, Aggravation, and Pick Up Sticks, Bingo, and Twister. 


Vintage Card Games:

Rook, Gin Rummy, Old Maid, Go Fish, War, Hearts, Snap

 

Vintage Crafts:

Children still enjoy weaving those potholders we made back in the sixties! You can find those plastic looms at Target and craft stores. 

Check out this links for more ideas.


Retro Tie Belts 

String Art  



Thanksgiving Word Activities: Yes, Mad Libs are vintage! (1953) Here are links to some Thanksgiving themed activities.





Other Vintage Games:
Vintage Football
     Red Rover, Tag, Basketball, Softball, Frisbee, Marbles, Hopscotch, Charades, and Musical Chairs (played with vintage music of course)
     
     Of course, football has been around since the late 1800’s. A reward, foreveryone staying tuned in to the people at your gathering, could be an opportunity to view football on television later. Televised football is true vintage. According to the Pro Football Hall of Fame, NBC was the first to televise a pro football game on October 22, 1939.

     If not everyone is a football fan, there are other viewing ideas.

Vintage Family Movies:

     Jungle Book (1942); Dumbo (1941); The Wizard of Oz (1939); Mary Poppins (1964); The Jungle Book (1967); A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965); 101 Dalmatians (1961); Alice in Wonderland (1951); Peter Pan (1953); and How the Grinch Stole Christmas (1966).

 

     However, try to save the vintage viewing for later. Savor the moments of talking and playing with visiting family members and friends. Interact without any electronic distractions. Dig below the formalities and  chitchat. What’s that person across the table thinking and feeling?

 

     Every year, things change. Time seems to go by a little faster. Carve out some time for family fun. Be fully engaged with those who are with you at this moment—that never goes out of style.



     

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3. flight. (some more paint and collage action)



flight.

(some more paint and collage action)



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4. Black Tower Official Announcement 24th November 2014



The last few hours I have been going over finances as well as planned and already published books and I have to make an announcement.

As of today all planned future books, with the exception of The Green Skies, are cancelled until further notice.

No, BTCG is NOT going out of business but is having to reassess its marketing strategy and focus which makes the UK no longer the main outlet.


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5. The Man Who Invented Christmas (2008)

The Man Who Invented Christmas. Les Standiford. 2008. Crown. 241 pages. [Source: Library]

Different readers will have different expectations when they see the full title of this one: The Man Who Invented Christmas: How Charles Dickens's A Christmas Carol Rescued His Career and Revived Our Holiday Spirits.

The focus is not so much on Christmas, as it is on Charles Dickens: his private and public life, his writing career, his inspirations, his fears and worries, his relationship with his publishers. The focus isn't solely on A Christmas Carol. Yes, this work gets discussed in detail. But the same can be said of many of Dickens' novels. The book, despite the title, focuses on Dickens' career as a writer or novelist. This book mentions and in some cases discusses most of Dickens' published works. Not just his books published BEFORE A Christmas Carol, but his whole career.

A Christmas Carol gets special treatment in this one, perhaps, not because it has a Christmas theme, but, because it is a significant to his career. Before A Christmas Carol, he'd had a few really big bestsellers. But. He'd also experienced some failures. His last three books were disappointing to his fans. They didn't sell as well. The critics didn't like them. His publishers were discouraged and worried. Dickens needed his next book to be something wonderful, something that would sell, something that would be loved by one and all. He needed a success: a feel-good success, something to give him confidence and something to give his publishers confidence in him again, and a financial success, something to get him out of debt, something to pay his bills.

The secondary focus of this one is not Christmas. Readers might expect it to be related to Christmas, the history of Christmas, its invention, or reinvention. But. Something gets more time and attention than Christmas. And that is the writing and/or publishing industry. The book gives readers a history lesson in publishing. How books were written, illustrated, printed, published, sold. Not just what went on BEFORE it was published, but also what typically happened next. How novels were adapted to the stage by others, by many others. How little control--if any--that the publisher and author had over their books, their stories, their characters and plots. Plays could do justice, at times, to the books they were based upon. But they could also be absolutely dreadful. The lack of copyright laws or international copyright laws. How publishers in other countries could steal entire books, republish them, not paying the author anything at all. The book even has a chapter or two on fan fiction. Not that he calls it fan fiction. But he writes of how other writers could "borrow" characters and give them further adventures and publish them.

Does the book talk about Christmas at all? Yes. It does. It tells of two extremes: those in the past who celebrated Christmas too wildly, too wantonly, and those in the past who refused to celebrate it all, who would have it be illegal. Either extreme seems a bit hard to believe, perhaps, for modern readers. The book tells of traditions. Some traditions being somewhat established before A Christmas Carol, and other traditions becoming more established by being described in A Christmas Carol. What I probably found most interesting was his mention of how traditionally it was goose served for the Christmas feast UNTIL the publishing of A Christmas Carol. When Scrooge buys a turkey to give to Bob Cratchit and his family, it seems he inspired his readers to change their traditions. Turkeys becoming more and more popular.

For readers interested in the life and death of Charles Dickens, his whole career, this one has some appeal. It provides plenty of details about his books and the publishing industry, how he was received by the public.

For readers looking for a quick, feel-good holiday read, this one may prove to be a chore to get through.

I liked it well enough. I've read a good many of his novels. I have some interest in his life. It worked for me. It was packed with plenty of information.

© 2014 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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6. Grateful Greetings to You

grateful card photo

Sparky Grateful cards in our Etsy shop

It’s that time of year again. Everyone is going around being all grateful for everyday things, like underwear and spare keys. Some people even go so far as to be grateful for other people. Isn’t that astounding?

I know I’m grateful for all the people who liked, retweeted, purchased, complimented and otherwise glanced at or sneezed in the general vicinity of Sparky Firepants art. You guys are super awesome.

What are you grateful for? Who are you grateful for?

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7. Shh! We Have A Plan by Chris Haughton


 "Shh! We Have a Plan" revolves around four friends going into the woods to capture a bird. The smallest (or youngest) friend has another idea, however. He just wants to talk to the bird: "hello birdie". After several attempts, the youngest succeeds and draws a whole forest of red-hued birds to him.  A large angry bird chases them off when the friends again attempt to capture a bird. At the end, the youngest points out a squirrel and they're off and running again. Younger readers will appreciate this book's slapstick humor, simple art and minimal text.

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8. Never-Before-Seen Eyvind Earle ‘Sleeping Beauty’ Concept Art Headed to Auction

The upcoming Profiles in History animation art auction, that will take place on December 18-19, includes numerous Eyvind Earle concept paintings that you may have not seen before.

0 Comments on Never-Before-Seen Eyvind Earle ‘Sleeping Beauty’ Concept Art Headed to Auction as of 11/24/2014 5:06:00 PM
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9. Redbubble Gift Guide

AndyWestface-Powerless

Powerless by Andy Westface

The holidays are approaching and with it the hustle and bustle of the shopping season. To help you the navigate the plethora of products that were produced over the past year we’ve prepared a series of gift guides aimed at designers and creative types. In this first guide we’ve teamed up with Redbubble, a creative community and marketplace, to create a curated list of prints and posters. Many of the illustrations featured in the list are available as t-shirts and tote bags as well. Happy shopping!

 

 

Karl James Mountford

I think we work well together by Karl James Mountford

 

Kai - Smile and Wave

Smile and Wave by Bykai

Kenny Poppins - Cold Furry

Cold Furry by Kenny Poppins

Znuese -  PolarBear

Polar Bear Coffee Break by Znuese

Reno Nogaj - Skate Space

Skate/Space by Reno Nogaj

 

 

——————–

This Gift Guide is brought to you by Redbubble. See their complete collection here.

——————–

Also worth viewing…
2013 Gift Guide
Recently Received Books: Nov
Recently Received Books: August

Follow us on RSSInstagramPinterestWanelo,

——————–

 

Thanks to this week's Sponsor // Retro Font Bundle






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10. Taking A Long-Term View Of Your Writing Career

Today I was emailing back and forth with someone and they laughed a bit, commenting that I seem to be "taking a long-term view on things," meaning my writing career. At first I was startled because it was so natural for me to consider the fate of my work once I'm dead. I wasn't being morbid. It's just that for me, when we talk about the rights that we authors grant publishers, my mind

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11. Hickman & Bodenheim Bring ‘The Dying And The Dead’ To Image Surprising No One

by Zachary Clemente

dyingdead Hickman & Bodenheim Bring The Dying And The Dead To Image Surprising No One

“The last story of the Greatest Generation”

Don’t let the semi-snarky headline fool you – I love me some Hickman Madness. Secret with artist Bodenheim was one of my favorite short series releases of the past two years and I adore both Manhattan Projects and East of West. Beyond his actual work, what really excites me is that Hickman seems to be utilizing Image’s platform in a way (or at least at a rate) that I wasn’t expecting. I shouldn’t be surprised though; he’s been doing it from day one. After releasing The Nightly News in 2006 with Image, we saw Hickman crank out Pax RomanaTranshumanRed Mass for Mars, and The Red Wing all within a few years. It’s explosive and exhilarating and hopefully a trend that other creators will be afforded.

New York Times bestselling and award-winning writer Jonathan Hickman (EAST OF WEST, THE AVENGERS) teams up with explosive artist Ryan Bodenheim (RED MASS FOR MARS, SECRET) for an all-new adventure series fraught with mystery, intrigue, and exotic end-of life care in THE DYING AND THE DEAD, coming from Image Comics on January 28.

The adventures begins in THE DYING AND THE DEAD #1 when a murder at a wedding sets off a series of reactions, unraveling secrets hundreds of years old. At great cost, a man with a dying wife is given the opportunity to save her. A lost tribe is reborn in another time. Seemingly unconnected events that force relics from the Greatest Generation to come together for one last hurrah.

“It’s not often that you work on something that feels almost perfect from day one, but working with Ryan again and how we’re both so in sync regarding the story, it really does feel like it could be something special,” said co-creator Hickman.

THE DYING AND THE DEAD (Diamond Code NOV140534) is a massive, over-sized, 60-page Indiana Jones-style high adventure that arrives in stores this 1/28 and will be available for $4.50.

4 Comments on Hickman & Bodenheim Bring ‘The Dying And The Dead’ To Image Surprising No One, last added: 11/24/2014
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12. Picking a Pasta

Eeny meeny capellini,
Ziti, elbows, bucatini.
Vermicelli, farfalloni,
Gnocchi, orzo, rigatoni.

Alfabeto and linguine,
Cavatelli, fettuccine.
Penne, pappardelle and gigli,
Stelle, risi, tripolini.

Picking pasta gives you choices;
Any way, your mouth rejoices.
Think I'll go and boil me some - 
If it's cooked al dente - yum!

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13. Never Visited a Place? You Can Still Writing About It – Here’s the Secret!


NOW AVAILABLE! 30 Days to a Stronger Novel Online Video Course



Two years ago, I wanted to write a story set in Campinas, Sao Paolo, Brazil.
I had never been there.
I only knew the name of two people who lived there.

Yet, I could convincingly write about the setting. Here’s the secret.

Google Earth

The free app, Google Earth, is immensely helpful to writers. I use the free, desktop version.

View satellite imagery, maps, terrain, 3D buildings, galaxies far in space, and the deepest depths of the ocean.

In 2011, Google Earth added the street view. They send out cars that drive along a certain road and take a 360 view of the landscape. That means you can put Google’s orange man on the street and look around. Today, the street view is available on all seven continents. See more on the background, scope and how to use Street View.

WhereisTheGoogleCar.com asks people to take a photo of the Google car when they see it and post the picture. It’s a “social experiment” to track the location of the car(s) on any given day.

Thank You, Google Earth, for Helping Me Write!

GPS Coordinates: Context.
When I wrote Abayomi, the Brazilian Puma, about a mother puma who died in a chicken coop trap near Campinas, Brazil, I was lucky enough to have an incident report that included GPS (Global Positioning System) coordinates. Google Earth immediately zoomed me into the right position, so that I was visually hovering right above the chicken coop. The context of the coop was crucial: Brazil has increased sugar cane production for use in making ethanol for automobile fuel, and the coop was nestled amidst the sugar cane fields. Pulling out some, though, it was also apparent that the sugar cane plantations were very close to large urban areas. This wasn’t a remote rural area. Instead, the pumas lived within sight of skyscrapers. How did I know this?

Abayomi was recently named a 2015 National Science Teacher's Association Outstanding Science Trade Book.

Abayomi was recently named a 2015 National Science Teacher’s Association Outstanding Science Trade Book.

Google Photos: Visual Details.
Google allows users to upload photographs that are marked with GPS information. On the maps, these are shown as tiny rectangles that when clicked open up the photos. Very near the chicken coop was such a photo that showed a skyline of skyscrapers of the city of Campinas.

Google Street Man and Maps: Topography
Google Earth also allows you to see the topography, or the terrain, of a setting. Is it hilly, flat, or somewhere in between? You can use the Street Man or simply fly around. We have a friend from India who flew us–through the miracle of Google Earth–over his parent’s house in the foothills of the Himalayas.

Distances: Measuring the Earth
I love the extra tools of Google Earth,too. For example, you can use the ruler to measure distances in kilometers or miles. I learned, for example, that a drone in a story would have to fly about 5 miles–as the crow flies. Very valuable information! I can then answer so many questions:

  • Is that within a drone’s range? Yes.
  • How long would the flight take, figuring 50 mph? 6 minutes.

That gives my hero a very narrow time window to locate the villain and disable the drone.

Other Options
Google Earth has in impressive area of other specialities: historical maps, Mars, the Moon, 3-D buildings, favorite places, maps about climate change and much more. See the range of services at their showcase.

I’m researching Mt. Rainier for a story: through Google Earth, I’ve gotten context, followed trails, found fantastic photos, and almost feel like I’ve been there. No, I haven’t felt the wind on my face or heard the chatter of birds. I’m adding to the Google Earth info such things as the flora/fauna of the region. I’ve hiked other areas in the Pacific Northwest, and I’ve hiked in mountainous areas. I’m pretty confident that I’ll be able to recreate this landscape for a reader. It won’t hurt to have a beta reader from the area vet it for me, but I think it will be close. For me, Google Earth is the next best thing to being on-site myself. Add to that Flickr Photos that are Creative Commons licensed, and my story take on an added weight of reality.


(Click the photos to go to the original flckr.com sites.)
MtRainier1


MtRainier2


MtRainier3


MtRainier4

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14. See all the "fun" I had in 2014 - a busy year for me.

Update… An 2014 overview to see what Marjorie did in 2014 – Go to http://marjorie-cv.blogspot.com/2014/11/marjorie-van-heerdens-2014-childrens.html

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15. Comic Cover

"Save the Kitty!" For an upcoming comic from Vanbreed Studios. Below is a peek at a little of the preliminary work:

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16. SkADaMo 2014

kill ralphie
The light was getting purple and soft outside.
Almost time for my father to come home from work.
What’s the matter? What you crying for?
Daddy’s going to kill Ralphie.
No, he’s not.
Yes, he is, too.
No, he’s not.
I promise you Daddy is not going to kill Ralphie.
Why don’t you come on out of there?
Would you like some milk?
You would?
Here you go.
All right?
I’ll see you later? Okay. Bye.
I heard the car roar up the driveway, and a wave of terror broke over me.
He’ll know what I said, the awful things that I said.

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17. Teaser Trailer Unleashed For ‘Jurassic World’

Universal Pictures has unleashed a new teaser trailer for Jurassic World. Thus far, it has drawn more than 3.6 million views on YouTube.

The video embedded above offers glimpses of Chris Pratt as Owen and Bryce Dallas Howard as Claire. This movie, inspired by Michael Crichton’s hit novel Jurassic Park, is scheduled to hit theaters on June 12, 2015. (via Vulture)

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

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18. Podcast-tastic

 

Like most freelancers, I end up listening to a lot of podcasts. So I thought I'd put together a list of a few of my favorites.

1. After the Jump: Hosted by Design*Sponge's Grace Bonney, After the Jump is a terrific resource for freelancers, creatives, small business owners and the like. A balance of interviews, tips and how-to's, it's definitely given me a lot of food for thought.

2. Serial: When I first heard that This American Life was doing a spin-off, I'll admit I was skeptical. But Sarah Koenig's made a convert of me and I'm counting down the days until each new episode. What I really love about Serial is the way it takes a story and disassembles it, examining all the bits of information we typically zoom past in this soundbite age. Caveat: Season 1 deals with a murder, so heads up if you're someone who listens to shows with kiddos around.

3. BBC Radio 4 Extra: You guys have no idea how much of this I listen to. For reals. I'm a sucker for radio dramas, so Radio 4 Extra is my auditory Shangri-La. Modern book adaptations, classics in serial form, sci-fi, it's pretty much all here. And speaking of the BBC...

4. Desert Island Discs: Stranded on a desert island, what tunes would you take along? Desert Island Discs poses this question to a terrific range of guests, everyone from politicians to actors, humanitarians to academics. You can also search for shows where the "castaway" choses a particular artist (and yes, I did listen to every show where the castaway chose the Talking Heads).

5. Smart Creative Women: A treasure trove of interviews with women in a wide range of fields, everything from surface design to quilting to illustration and more.

And what else? I figure This American LifeRadiolab and All Songs Considered are a given for most people, but if you don't listen, get a move on ASAP. I don't listen as frequently to How to do Everything and 99% Invisible, but when I do, like 'em a lot. And if you have the slightest interest in comics, Jerzy Drozd's Comics are Great podcast is top notch.

Whew. So what did I miss?

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19. We wish you and yours a Merry Christmas and a Wonderful 2015 !! With Lots of Love, Johann & Marjorie (van Heerden)


0 Comments on We wish you and yours a Merry Christmas and a Wonderful 2015 !! With Lots of Love, Johann & Marjorie (van Heerden) as of 11/24/2014 6:38:00 PM
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20. NaNoWriMo Tip #16: Write What You Don’t Know

Do you want to take your NaNoWriMo story in an unfamiliar direction? Back in 2013, Toni Morrison and Junot Díaz headlined a “Live From the NYPL” event.

The video embedded above features the entire conversation. During the discussion, Morrison shared this thought:

“I tell my students; I tell everybody this. When I begin a creative writing class I say, I know you’ve heard all your life, ‘Write what you know.’ Well I am here to tell you, You don’t know nothing. So do not write what you know. Think up something else. Write about a young Mexican woman working in a restaurant and can’t speak English. Or write about a famous mistress in Paris who’s down on her luck.”

This is our sixteenth NaNoWriMo Tip of the Day. To help GalleyCat readers take on the challenge of writing a draft for a 50,000-word novel in 30 days, we will be offering advice throughout the entire month.

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

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21. Book Review: The Mockingbird Next Door by Marja Mills

From Goodreads:
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee is one of the best loved novels of the twentieth century. But for the last fifty years, the novel’s celebrated author, Harper Lee, has said almost nothing on the record. Journalists have trekked to her hometown of Monroeville, Alabama, where Harper Lee, known to her friends as Nelle, has lived with her sister, Alice, for decades, trying and failing to get an interview with the author. But in 2001, the Lee sisters opened their door to Chicago Tribune journalist Marja Mills. It was the beginning of a long conversation—and a great friendship.
 
In 2004, with the Lees’ blessing, Mills moved into the house next door to the sisters. She spent the next eighteen months there, sharing coffee at McDonalds and trips to the Laundromat with Nelle, feeding the ducks and going out for catfish supper with the sisters, and exploring all over lower Alabama with the Lees’ inner circle of friends.
 
Nelle shared her love of history, literature, and the Southern way of life with Mills, as well as her keen sense of how journalism should be practiced. As the sisters decided to let Mills tell their story, Nelle helped make sure she was getting the story—and the South—right. Alice, the keeper of the Lee family history, shared the stories of their family.
 
The Mockingbird Next Door is the story of Mills’s friendship with the Lee sisters. It is a testament to the great intelligence, sharp wit, and tremendous storytelling power of these two women, especially that of Nelle.
I'd be remiss to review this without sharing with my reader friends that there is some controversy around this book.  Upon its acquisition by Penguin in 2011 and again at its release in 2014, Harper Lee's lawyers issued a statement on her behalf saying that she had not agreed to participate in the writing of this book and that Mills, the author, took advantage of Lee's elderly sister, Alice, in order to get the information she uses to write the book.  USA Today has a pretty balanced article on the whole issue that you can read here.

My own brief thoughts: I really, really want to believe that Lee was not taken advantage of.  The fact that I wanted this book to exist so badly may have influenced my decision that I don't have an issue with the author's publishing it.  But here are a few legitimate reasons believe support that:

  • If the book isn't just complete fiction, and there's no reason to believe that it is - no one has claimed any of it is untrue, then it's evident that Lee was not avoiding Mills as she later claimed.  
  • Close friends of both Lee sisters who don't have anything to gain financially from the sale of the book verify that Lee had given her permission for Mills to write the memoir and that Mills respected all stories Lee wished to be off the record.
  • Lee has had numerous problems in the past few years with lawyers and managers and family members making statements on her behalf.  Evidence I've seen points to Lee being in a position where she's relying on others to speak for her - others who DO have a financial stake in keeping information about Lee within the estate.
To be fair, I do have to say that I think it's sad that Mills' relationship with Lee has deteriorated this badly and that the book about a sweet friendship is tainted by the controversy.  I wonder a bit if Mills and Penguin might have waited to publish the book after Lee's death, in order to be sure to respect Lee's wishes.  But it's a hard issue.  Because historically and literarily, Lee is hugely important.  If the world hadn't largely ignored the wishes of many authors who make up the literary canon, we'd be without some of the most important works and historical context for that canon.  Basically, what I'm saying is that while I, with my limited amount of knowledge, can imagine that the publisher or author may have handled things differently, I'm glad this book exists.  On to the review!

Writing
I've read many critiques of the writing in this book, and while I understand where the reviewers are coming from, I think it's important to understand that this book is not purporting to be a biography of Lee.  And if you're looking for in depth analysis of her life and works, you will certainly be disappointed.  It's not high literature and it's nothing near a portrait of Lee's life.  It does focus a lot on Mills herself and many of the stories she shares are mundane.  For me, this wasn't a problem.  I knew from the beginning it wasn't a tell-all and I was fascinated to know what Alice and Harper Lee's day to day lives were like.  I loved the stories about feeding ducks and stopping for coffee at McDonalds.  Don't expect a thrilling or super-revealing story.  Expect exactly what the book claims to be - stories about Alice, Harper, and their friendship with Mills, and I think you'll be satisfied.

Entertainment Value
Again, I just loved this book.  I thought it was charming and sweet and I particularly appreciated how careful Mills is to avoid sharing anything Harper Lee requested be off the record, even if that means we don't get any exciting or scandalous inside scoop.  I think Mills does a great job of respectfully portraying how Alice and Harper have spent the later years of the lives.  She also does an amazing job of showing us Monroeville, AL, their home and the basis for TKAM's Maycomb County, and the ways it has changed since Lee was a child.  My love of all things Southern and small town really drew me to this aspect of the book.  

Overall
I thought it was absolutely charming.  I hate that it has caused hard feelings, but I think it's a valuable book that's worth reading if you're a fan of Harper Lee.  It's also just a great story about small towns, older people, and the changes they've seen as the world has progressed.  The author portrays Lee in a very positive light and refrains from sharing anything unsavory or critical regarding her or her family. 

Thanks to Penguin for providing me with a copy to review.


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22. Marginalia in the Digital Age

Something every reader has an opinion about is marginalia. Do you dare mark up the printed page? And what about when you buy a previously owned book, must it look as though it was never read or do you love to buy books that have been well loved?

I came across an article at Fast Company today A Kindle Designer’s Touching Online Memorial to The Marginalia Scribbled in Books. The article talks about Eric Scmitt who helped design the graphic interface for the first Kindle. He is a collector of marginalia which seems like a fun thing to collect. To my horror, however, he doesn’t save the book entire, but slices out the marked up pages he wants to keep with an X-Acto knife. WTF? I’m still a bit faint and trying really hard to not hyperventilate over that bit. Maybe I’m wrong, but isn’t part of marginalia the whole book package you find it in? Doesn’t taking it out of the context of that particular book risk losing the charm and pleasure of it?

The “touching memorial” ends up being a website Schmitt started in order to share his marginalia finds. The Pages Project is an interesting idea and Schmitt invites page submissions. The design of the website is at first look kind of cool but not reader friendly in my opinion. In fact, I think some of the continuing faintness I feel is because of the website making me dizzy.

Schmitt does realize the irony in his helping create a device that is chipping away at the existence of the marginalia he loves. He does worry about how digital “marginalia” will be preserved because at this point there is no real way to save it without actively taking steps to do so. Who among us is going to take the time to do that? I know I won’t. That makes me a little sad because I love opening books I read a long time ago and marked up. I love rereading them and adding to the commentary or previous years. But with the ebooks I have read? Not going to happen unless I manage to preserve that same exact ebook and the notes file across ereaders as the years go by. And even if I manage such a thing, whose to say that in 20 years the files will still be readable because of changes in technology and formatting? It’d be like trying to retrieve a file you saved on a floppy disk in 1989. Good luck!

I am not the best or most active marginalia writer. I find some books easier to mark up than others. Some books require it. I marked up Ulysses like crazy when I read it and would not have been able to get through it otherwise. Other books invite me to make comments. Proust is one of those as well as Virginia Woolf and Jane Austen. Other books I fear would scream if I should ever touch a pencil to the page. For Some Reason Margaret Atwood falls here which is weird because I am sure she would encourage scribbling with abandon.

Marginalia isn’t dead yet. As long as there are print books there will be people who write in them. But it is certainly an activity that is becoming less common. If it ever does disappear, would you miss it?


Filed under: Books, Reading

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23. Tonight in LA: ‘Schoolhouse Rock! LIVE’

90-year-old 'Schoolhouse Rock!' composer and singer Bob Dorough performs live in Los Angeles tonight!

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24.

More of my young student's art work.

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25. Times running out to Win a copy of Ruff Christmas

How excited are you?

We are very excited at Ruff Life, especially with Ruff Christmas being released; it's got to be one of the funniest stories and greatest adventures, and it promises to have the whole family in stitches of laughter.

If you have a sweet tooth then go to our store and check out our cute chocolate dipped oreo cookie pops - they are really fun and will make a great decoration for any Christmas party table.  We also have some lovely gifts; our Ruff Life scarfs are stunningly fashionable. The link to the site is on the left or visit our website Ruff Life Online

Below is the link to enter the FREE Ruff Life book giveaway. Don't leave it too long to enter, or you will miss the opportunity!



Goodreads Book Giveaway

Ruff Christmas by B.R. Tracey

Ruff Christmas

by B.R. Tracey

Giveaway ends December 09, 2014.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter to win

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