Sunday, April 25, 2010

Percy Jackson Vs. Harry Potter

So I finished the True Blood book the day of my husband's surgery, and I moved onto reading the first book in the Percy Jackson series. I really like it--it's a fast read, and I can't put it down. However, just knowing this series came after Harry Potter makes me think Percy's author took quite a few ideas straight from J.K. Rowlings.

1. Percy Jackson is a boy who doesn't fit in. His Mom dies trying to save him, and she's this pure, lovely woman (just like Harry's mom Lily). Percy's step dad, Gabe, whom Percy's had to live with for awhile, doesn't like Percy. He treats him like garbage, making him sleep in bad accommodations when Percy comes back home from boarding school. (The Dursleys are written all over this.)

2. Percy is a half-blood (mudblood). While Harry wasn't actually a mudblood (that was Hermione), the concept is the same in both books. One parent who has special powers and one parent who's plain human.

3. There's a wise man watching out for Percy. (Dumbledore in HP).

4. There's a prophesy about Percy's fate. (same as in HP with those crystal balls). The prophesies in both tales have double meanings and can't be taken at face value.

I'm not saying one book is better than the other, and I actually enjoy reading something that reminds me of HP. But I will say that I know what the author and publisher were doing, riding off the coattails of a loved HP series about a mishap boy who is destined for something big. I'd like to say I'm smart enough not to fall for this clear marketing tactic....but...I've fallen...and I plan to read all the Percy Jackson books.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

The Sookie Stackhouse Book Passed Time Well

My husband had a successful, easy knee surgery, and we were in and out in five hours. I was only waiting in the visitor's area for about an hour and 1/2 by myself. The other hours I was with my husband in pre or post surgery. During the hour and 1/2, I finished the next to last Sookie Stackhouse novel, "From Dead to Worse". It helped pass the time well and wasn't too hard on the brain.

Thanks everyone for your well wishes on the surgery! :)

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

What to read while waiting for news?

Good evening,

It's the eve of my husband's knee surgery, and as a follow-up to my blog from February "what do you read when you're sitting around with a bum leg"...what are you supposed to read when you're sitting in the hospital, waiting to hear how your loved one's surgery went? I might be waiting anywhere from 1-6 hours, and anyone who knows me will agree that I'm not good at waiting for news on such subjects. My fears get the best of me. But...I hear that knee surgeries (he's getting a cadaver's ACL) are routine. It's an out-patient surgery, so I'm sure everything will be fine. In fact, my husband is looking forward to coming through the surgery 110% better and more agile than before his snowboarding accident. (He's thinking his new ACL will make him bionic!) :)

I don't want to move from the waiting room because I want to be there when the doctor comes out with news. This means I'll need something to read as I wait. The book contenders are: the latest Sookie Stackhouse (TrueBlood) novel, Beach House by Jane Green, Dirty Job by Christopher Moore, Saturday Wife by Naomi Ragen, or the Percy Jackson series (thanks Julie for letting me borrow the whole set).

Here's hoping for a fast, easy operation!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Update on writings

So....I didn't win the Golden Heart award from Romance Writers of America (cause 3 of the 5 judges who rated it said it wasn't exactly romance). Maybe that's actually a good thing.

And I didn't win the Bethesda writing contest for the 4,000 word short story contest where I submitted the adoption piece.

But I did get an agent to ask for my full manuscript and synopsis.

And I am speaking at GWU to about 15 ladies about writing. They even created a facebook invite for it, so I felt special.

And I'm still writing the 2nd book. I think this one might even be better than the first. I read the first 26 pages to Jason and he was actually enthralled. If a boy is enthralled hearing a read-aloud of chick-lit, you know you have something or other good.

Oh, and while we were cleaning out our upstairs to get ready for a house renovation, I found a bunch of other short stories I wrote in college. I hadn't even remembered it, but I wrote another horror stort story called "Bump in the Night". And I had started a novelette horror story called "Notes". There was even a start to a young adult series called "The Castle Chronicles". I remember that one. It was about a middle school girl whose parents were historians or archeologists or something. And she would travel with them being home-schooled. But she'd end up solving these big mysteries having to do with all the castles her parents worked in. I thought that one would be pretty cool. Maybe one day.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Update on book publishing

So bad news first and then the good news. I didn't win the Bethesda Magazine literary fiction contest. I submitted my 4,000 word story, Silence, about an adopted son. There were 86 entries. of the agents to whom I sent Girl: Classified asked to see my entire manuscript. So I'm hoping she'll want to represent me. Wish me luck! Has anyone ever heard of Cheryl Ferguson?