Shareworthy Reading and Writing Links – Mar 13

A glimpse of the daylight savings dawn as photographed by my neighbor, David "Stoney" Stone

A glimpse of the daylight savings dawn as photographed by my neighbor, David “Stoney” Stone

Did you “spring ahead” this morning? I’m not sure springing is actually in my repertoire, but I did wake early enough to appreciate the beautiful sunrise. For a few moments, the corner of eastern sky that I could see through my bedroom window was awash in a bright and hopeful palette of lit-from-within pinks, oranges, and golds. It was a good way to start the day.

Because my plans went slightly off the rails last week, I’m a little short on shareworthy items today; but I’m feeling that the lack of links is actually appropriate for this transitional day of the year. Though not a solstice or an equinox, it seems like a day to pause and take stock. I actually spent part of my morning mending, of all things. Digging out needle and thread and a pair of those ingenious  foldable scissors, I did my best to stitch up a couple of ripped seams and repair a broken shoulder strap on a tank top. I am no seamstress, but there was something quietly satisfying about the simple work of closing each gap, one small stitch at a time. My work was not beautiful, but it will hopefully be functional.

For the rest of my day, I hope to enjoy some writing, some reading, and a little doing-nothing time with my daughter. I hope your Sunday is relaxing, rejuvenating, and maybe – if you’re in the mood – a little reflective. Cheers!

_jamie sig

 


 

 Books I’m Reading:

A little while back, I shared a link to the Scroll.in post, Twenty-one brilliant things only Margaret Atwood could say – and she did. My favorite was:

What writing can do
Writing is also the primary way in which the unknown, the obscure, the undervalued, and the neglected can become known. All over the world, writing has been the means by which light is shed on darkness. Whether the darkness of oppressive regimes, of lives lived in poverty, of the oppression of women, of discrimination of so many kinds.

book stone mattressAtwood’s snippets of sassy wisdom, reminded me that I have not read much of her work. I think I read The Handmaid’s Tale years and years ago, but I could not recall any other novels or stories of hers that I’d read recently. So, I trundled myself down to the library and picked up a copy of her short story collection, Stone Mattress.

I just finished the last story in the collection – Torching the Dusties – this morning, and like all of Atwood’s best works, I found it somewhat unsettling. She has an uncanny way of reflecting pieces of our society and humanity in an alarmingly direct way. “Sharp” is an adjective often applied to her work, and it applies in more ways than one.

I think my favorite stories were the three linked tales about writer characters. I admire the way Atwood told more of each character’s story as the three stories unfolded. And, of course, they were extra endearing because they were about writers.

Though dark, the tales in Stone Mattress are not depressing. They are thought-provoking. They will not keep you up at night, but they may stir your dreams.

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My Favorite Blog Reads for the Week:

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Sundry Links and Whatnot:

Detail of illustration by Rovina Cai

Detail of illustration by Rovina Cai

While I was laid up in the hospital earlier this week, I happened upon a link to a short story on Tor.com called “Tom, Thom” by K.M. Ferebee. Reading on my iPhone, I devoured the story of wolves and changelings and frozen worlds.

Today, as I searched for the link so I could share that story with you, I was delighted to discover that there is an entire collection of short fiction available on Tor.com. This is definitely a page I will be visiting again. Lots to explore here!

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Finally, a quote for the week:

Loved this Twitter find via @TheUnNovelist

pin all amateurs

I hope your writing is springing ahead with hope and joy and adventure today. Here’s to simple pleasures and small accomplishments and knowing how to enjoy both.
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Jamie Lee Wallace Hi. I’m Jamie. I am a content marketer and branding consultant, columnist, sometime feature writer, prolific blogger, and aspiring fiction writer. I’m a mom, a student of equestrian and aerial arts (not at the same time), and a nature lover. I believe in small kindnesses, daily chocolate, and happy endings. Introduce yourself on Facebooktwitter, Instagram, or Pinterest. I don’t bite … usually.
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13 thoughts on “Shareworthy Reading and Writing Links – Mar 13

  1. I went through an Atwood “period” a long time ago, and devoured many of her earlier novels. I haven’t read much of her more recent work, excepting Oryx and Crake a few years ago. Need to get back to her, maybe with the short story collection you mentioned here. Thanks Jamie.

    • Oryx and Crake intrigued me, but I may need to switch to something “brighter” for a moment before I delve back into Atwood. She’s a brilliant writer in terms of craft, insight, and imagination; but there’s no denying that her visions are often dark. They require a certain fortitude. Though … the new graphic novel she has coming out sounds pretty fun … Angel Catbird, I think it’s called. The woman’s nothing if not wildly versatile!

      If you do give Stone Mattress a try, love to hear what you think. Tweet me at @suddenlyjamie. 🙂

    • Oh, I’m all about “reading signs.” 😉
      I say go for it.

      And now, since you think you’d like her, I’m curious to know what other authors you like. Any suggestions for writers or books I should check out?

      • Well, I have a teenage daughter who loves to read and makes me read her faves all the time. So I’ve pretty much only read John Green books, Ransom Riggs, Challenger Deep (which was really good,) and that kind of thing. But, I have a stack of books to read for me that I know I’ll love, but haven’t read yet. 🙂 Bel Canto (Ann Patchett,)The Maytrees (Annie Dillard), Rabbit Run (John Updike). They’re on my list next!

    • Hello. Lisa! It’s been a while. 🙂

      Though it is, as I said, dark in some places, I did enjoy Stone Mattress. Atwood is one of those writers who can deliver even a dystopian story with a wry smile on her lips and a mischievous twinkle in her eye.

      Happy daylight savings to you, too. It was lovely to have the sunshine last so long yesterday afternoon, and – truth be told – I enjoyed the extra dark morning today. There’s nothing like a few moments alone in the quiet and the dark to start the day right.

  2. Hi Jamie, Atwood always depressed me, but I might give her another go, and thanks for the link to the wicked cozy women. I don’t live in an English language environment and have a question on “awesome” which I often see in blogs & comments. To me it sounds like a teenager with no range of better vocabulary, or an adult trying to sound hip. At best, sometimes tongue-in-cheek? 🙂 How do you feel about it?

    • Hello. Bea. 🙂

      Atwood can be depressing, though – as I mentioned in a comment above – I always feel like there’s a sense of underlying humor and pathos in her stories. It can be very subtle, but I sense that she is a woman of such sensibilities.

      My pleasure to share the wicked cozy women. You know that our own Julie Hennrikus is one of that group, right?

      As for “awesome,” I agree that it is overused and often misused. “Amazing” is another such word that seems to have become an all-purpose bit of fluff that we use to fill in the blank when we don’t want to make the effort to come up with something more accurate. “Awesome” definitely has a teen flavor to it – probably because it was such a big part of the 80s valley girl slang. That version of the word has been perpetuated by use in shows like Saturday Night Live when they do their Boston-based “wicked awesome” skits. 😉 For the most part, I try not to use it too much (same goes for “amazing”), but when I do slip up, I don’t beat myself up over it.

      Curious now about your language environment. Can you share more?

      Thanks for the great quesions! 🙂

      • I live in Italy, my SO is Italian, so are the people we see socially. I only get to speak Business English with my students (!) who are mostly Italian top managers with upper intermediate/advanced English…I also translate. I only get to the USA once a year for a short stay, so I have to work hard at keeping my English updated and relevant and to catch the nuances of modern-speak. How? mostly continuous reading but also films and TV series. And for the last 11 months… blogging 🙂

  3. Pingback: Shareworthy Reading and Writing Links Mar 20 | Live to Write – Write to Live

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