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Help Penguin Random House #GiveaBook

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I’d meant to post this sooner, but I didn’t have it written down on my phone’s notepad app like I do all my other blog ideas. Funny story, I usually just write down blog ideas as soon as I think of them. But sometimes I open the app and have no idea what I wanted to write. Then I scroll through the list and it only further complicates the matter. I usually forget until the next day or something. Maybe I have some kind of memory loss.

Anyway, back to this post. Penguin Random House announced their “Give a Book” program a little while back. I think it was in November. This is about the easiest thing you can do to make a small difference. The program is simple. The folks at Penguin Random House will donate a book to Save the Children every time someone tweets using #GiveaBook. That’s it! That’s all you have to do! Seriously.

Save the Children is a non-profit that literally does everything you can imagine for children around the world, including here in the US. And a book will be donated if you just tweet #GiveaBook.

I don’t know if the 25,000 limit has been reached yet, but what’s it matter? Tweet anyway. I’m getting in on the fun. If you feel like reading some very random and non-book related tweets, follow me on Twitter here. I’m a lot more…outspoken on there.

What’s With the Rush to Publish?

Self publishing has changed the mindset of many writers in many ways. But today’s topic is the rush to publish. Back before the days of self publishing, I don’t think most writers were in any rush to publish their books. Why not? Because they had no control over how long the process would actually take. Queries. Rejections. Queries. Rejections. It was a cycle that continued…until it didn’t and an agent and/or publisher was found. But that’s no longer the case. Sure you have the purists who will still go through the process to find an agent and traditional publisher for a wide variety of reasons. And these writers are in no rush because they know the process takes time. But bring on the self published authors and it’s a different story.

They seem to pride themselves on the number of “books” they can release. I’ve read about some authors trying to write one million words in a calendar year. ONE MILLION. And then taking the next year to “edit” those books. Like really? I’m sure that person had every intention of self publishing all those books at some point. Also, I’ve read about self published authors releasing a book a month. I mean, who do they think they are? James Patterson? Because those books can’t possibly be high quality. It seems like they’re getting that whole “quality over quantity” thing all wrong. Just because you release dozens of books does not mean anyone is actually reading them.

I just don’t understand why all these “authors” are in such a rush to publish. As if their nonexistent readers are going somewhere.

Want to Guest Post on Write me a Book, John?

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Photo Credit

The Best of 2014 will be cut short by one day. Instead, I’ve decided to ask for guest bloggers for only the second time ever! Isn’t that exciting? I think so. There’s a reason I’ve only had one guest post ever. I’m very serious and particular about the content on my blog. Sure I write about random topics a couple times every month, but I’d say more than 90 percent of my posts have been about something related to writing or books.

So, the first thing that I want to tell you all is that I’m willing to take a little gamble here. I’m not going to ask for what you might want to post about. Yes it needs to go with the overall theme of my blog, but that’s the only requirement! Well, it can’t be any original work. Cause you posting a poem or an excerpt from your WIP is not something that I’m interested in.

You don’t have to tell me the topic. And you don’t have to be a regular commenter or reader of my blog. All you have to do is tell me that you want to post on here and then write something and send it to me. And since I’ve written about so many topics, I’m okay if it’s something I’ve already written about because your opinion and viewpoint is not the same as mine.

So, do you want to guest post on my blog? All you have to do is say so in the comments. Who knows, this could become a monthly thing if I get multiple responses. And if you’re wondering, my blog currently has 2587 total followers. 2092 of those are on WordPress. I’m aiming for posting any guest post on or around January 2. So I’d say get something written and get it to me ASAP.

PS: Just because I get something doesn’t mean I’ll post it.

The Best of 2014: Books that became movies

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NPR Books

The Best of 2014 is a series of posts in which I talk about a different topic each day this week. Today’s topic will be adaptations. Except today’s post is different. I don’t have a list for you. I’m going to ask what you all think. Because I don’t go to the movies enough to have any idea what the best adaptations of 2014 are.

2014 was no different from other recent calendar years in that there were MANY books adapted into major films. Just a few off the top of my head that were at least fairly well received…Lone SurvivorGone GirlMockingjay Part 1The Theory of Everything, The Fault in Our Stars, and The Maze Runner. I could have named a lot more, but the point of this post isn’t for me to list out random literary adaptations. I want to know which movies adapted from books you enjoyed this year. Sure there’s an inherent bias if the book happened to be written by an author you like, but who cares.

I have two movies in mind that I think are probably the best movies based on books, but that’s just based on reviews and critics. Y’all may think differently. So tell me, which books adapted into movies did you think stood above the rest in 2014?

PS: Lone Survivor was actually released on Christmas day last year, but it received a wide release in January.

The Best of 2014: Books I read

I began this series of posts yesterday by telling y’all about the best bloggers I know. Today we’re going to talk about the best books I read in 2014. Although not over yet, it’ll be my worst reading year since high school. I’ve only made it through seven books. Seven. Oh well. But there were some standouts among those seven that I do want to talk about. Remember these are NOT books released in 2014 but books I read in 2014.

#1 The Diary of a Young Girl - Anne Frank

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I read this book as part of my journey to read every book on Amazon’s 100 Books to Read in a Lifetime. I thoroughly enjoyed this book. This isn’t really a book. It’s her diary, as you well know. And maybe that’s why it really hit me like it did. She takes you through every emotion imaginable and she does so in such an eloquent manner that you can’t help but be impressed by her grasp of the written word. She’s able to take you back to one of the worst periods the world has ever known, and she does it while in hiding. It’s a remarkable work that everyone should read.

I currently have this book ranked #1 on my list of the best books I’ve ever read. There’s no doubt that it will stay there for some time. Here’s the post I wrote the day after finishing it.

#2 The Drop (Harry Bosch #15) – Michael Connelly

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Michael Connelly is right near the top of my favorite authors and I’ve never once been disappointed by one of his Bosch novels. The Drop is no exception. Bosch is working two cases at once. One is the death of a city councilman’s son and the other is a cold case. That’s all I’ll say. It’s vintage Bosch and I already have the next book in the series on my shelf.

I currently have this book ranked #13 on my list of the best books I’ve ever read. One spot ahead of the third and final book on the list.

#3 The Fault in Our Stars - John Green

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I don’t need to tell you anything about this book because you’ve probably already read it and made up your own mind about the story itself. This was the first time I’d read any YA title since Mockingjay in 2012. I really enjoyed this book. Yeah I thought Gus was too perfect and I thought the way he talked to Hazel was a little too much for a couple of teens, but those are pretty minor things. I loved them both as characters and John Green got millions of people to read about a tricky subject.

I currently have this book ranked #14 on my list of the best books I’ve ever read. Here’s the post I wrote about it earlier this year.

So that’s it! Those are the three best books I read this year! Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone just missed being included in the list. I won’t ask if you’ve read these titles because you’ve almost certainly read at least two of them, but I would like to know what your top reads of the year were. Tell me now.

The Best of 2014: Bloggers

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Photo Credit: Ongoing Operations

The Best of 2014 will be a series of posts all this week in which I talk about different topics related to blogging. This will be the first post in the series in which I tell y’all about the best bloggers I know and have interacted with over the course of 2014. There won’t be any order. I’d said that I would include 10 bloggers, but that’s not going to happen. I couldn’t come up with 10. I settled with eight bloggers I think you all should check out. Let’s start.

Amy – Inkcouragement

Hers was actually the first name I wrote down on my notepad right now as I sat down to write this post. And she was definitely one of the first bloggers to come to mind when I first thought of writing this. She writes about all things writing. And can offer some great writing advice if you’re in need of some. AND she’s the only blogger I’ve ever allowed to guest post here. Couldn’t leave her off the list.

Aly – ILikeBooksTooMuch

Another super easy choice. First off, she’s hilarious. I think I laugh at almost every one of her posts. She reads a ton of books every year. And I know eventually is going to write some great ones. Still waiting for you to finish your book, Aly! And I kind of gave her a nickname. But I’m not telling what it is. And she’s a gamer. Like when does that happen? Oh, and she’s easily the most entertaining person I’m friends with on SnapChat. All great things.

Meg – Meg Writes Stuff

She writes 100 word stories on her blog. And in those 100 words you are guaranteed to be thoroughly entertained. AND she just won a major writing competition! She’s famous. Like no joke. So now I’m more of a fan than anything.

Jess – Like Star Filled Skies

These first four have all been easy choices. Jess has written like 82134 books and she’s only 23. Do you realize what that means? She was born writing. And she paints too! Can you say artistic? Cause this girl is the definition.  You should read her blog because her flash fiction is as good as any fiction I’ve come across on WordPress. And her posts are always interesting.

MP Sharma

Hilarious. Her posts are full of sarcasm and humor and she consistently posts just about everyday. Until now. She’s on a break until early next year, but if you haven’t read her posts before, then you can just scroll through her archives. She doesn’t post about writing or books as much as some other bloggers on this list, but every post is usually short and entertaining. Oh! And she very rarely makes YouTube videos. Her voice. Oh my goodness. Y’all have no idea. It’s perfection.

Crystal – Writer’s Bounty

Simply put, she writes the best poetry that I read on WordPress. And I usually read a lot. Whenever I post a poem I’ve written I’m always just kind of hoping that she’ll think it’s written okay. But shhh, she doesn’t know that.

John – Get Off my Lawn

His posts are pretty random. But this guy is witty, sarcastic, and hilarious. Like the other bloggers I’ve mentioned are pretty funny people, but he’s on another level. I’ll comment on one of his posts or he’ll comment on one of mine and I’ll just be laughing uncontrollably for a few minutes. Just check out his blog. You’re missing out until you do.

AutumnBrownEyedGirlDotCom

Just an all around blogger. She’s posted poetry, random real-life stories (I think), and writing questions. What more do you want? She’s the only blogger on the list to have two blogs I like, so she gets two links. Her name is one link and her blog is the other.

So that’s it! The best bloggers I’ve interacted with over the course of 2014! I focused on them in my brief descriptions, but every one of them has also been around my blog quite a bit. Go check them out!

A Special Treat This Week

2014 is quickly coming to a close. Later in the month I’ll do a recap post for the whole year, but this week I’m going to do something a little different. It’ll be a series of of posts titled “The Best of 2014″ and each day I’ll discuss a different topic. But these won’t just be random things I want to write about, they’re all about blogging!

And I figure why not start off big. The first topic will be bloggers! I guess it’s no different from doing one of those stupid blog awards posts, but this time I’m taking a whole lot more into consideration. I’m going to be thinking of the content of their posts, how often they visit my blog, and how often we interact on one of our blogs. This won’t be strictly a list of my favorite bloggers because that would be too easy. I’m really going to spend some time on this in the next 24 hours to come up with a list of bloggers I think you all would like.

I’m planning on naming 10, which after my year of blogging is just about impossible, and I already have at least half of those spots filled without having to look anything up…BUT do you REALLY think you should make the list? Feel free to do a little lobbying in the comments section. This isn’t a competition and my opinion is only my opinion, but I think it would be cool to get a little recognition from someone for an entire year of blogging. So why not toot your own horn a bit?

Check back tomorrow to see if you make the list!

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