Sunday, May 22, 2011

On to The Complete Sherlock Holmes

So, I finished Charlotte Bronte.  Wonderful book, and it absolutely spoke to me, being a person going through the writing process.

My next book is the Complete Sherlock Holmes, by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.  Folks, this is by far the largest book I have read thus far.  I am reading 4 novels, and over 50 short stories.  The font is tiny y'all.  We're taking an 8 point font max here.  I almost feel like I need to go to the eye doctor for a new prescription - it is that small.

I've gone through the first two novels, and now I have a bunch of short stories before I get to the Hound of the Baskervilles.  I must say it is very enjoyable reading, but I was disappointed that Sherlock Holmes used  cocaine.  I didn't know that.  Okay, so you might say what rock have you been hiding under, and that would be the rock known as TV.  Most of my  knowledge of  Sherlock Holmes is from  Star Trek,  where Data was  Sherlock Holmes on the holodeck and that rad butler from The Nanny sitcom was  Moriarty.  Hey...I'm  trying to better myself here.

Anyhoo, the experience so far is very enjoyable.  It is extremely clever writing, and the endings are not completely predictable.  I continue to plow through.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Charlotte Bronte ..... kindred

So,  I am almost done reading the autobiography of Charlotte Bronte, as written by her friend and fellow author Elizabeth Gaskell.  She was a fascinating person...what a mind.

When she was 5, she could debate people in politics.  Politics people!  Most kids that age are trying to keep their crayolas in the lines.  She led a rather quiet life with her sisters and father, and very much preferred it that way.  Her life was certainly her own.

The thing I'm getting most out of this book is how she sees herself as an author, and her creative process.  As a person that is working on her first novel, I found this particularly fascinating.  She marveled at the people that she created out of her imagination, as I have done as well.  Also, she said that she might not write for weeks or days, but when her inspiration hits, she writes and writes until her thoughts are on paper.  Oh hi hello!

What a timely book to read.  I have about 100 pages to go,  and then I will be on to my next book in this project.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Thomas Paine - The Rights of Man

Yes - I read introduction to epilogue Thomas Paine's Rights of Man.

I know this was written during a time when the written word was the primary source for enlightenment, entertainment and edification.  I respect that, and indeed the book was beautifully written.  It encompasses the best principles for a beautiful governnment.

Thomas Paine was basically writing to counter the claims of a Mr. Burke, a Brit who found the French Revolution to be an awful endeavor, and waxed eloquent on the beauty that is financing an aristocracy.

If I had to address Mr. Burke in the present day, I would have done it more succinctly.

Mr. Burke......yo mama.  And thus ends my commentary...almost.

Of course, when Thomas Paine wrote, the weight of the pen, I believe, had more value, and whoa did he have the gift of gab.  It was beautiful to read, and I encourage anyone that enjoys freedom to read his work.

And now I am almost half done with my next assigned book.  I am reading The Life of Charlotte Bronte, written by Elizabeth Gaskell.  She was Bronte's friend, and an excellent writer in her own right.  I am thoroughly enjoying it, and will save my opinions for the next post.