July Read-a-Thon Update: Day 20

There’s only a couple of days left in the readathon! I have a couple of other projects starting on the 1st, but I rather enjoy keeping track of my reading like this…

Thus far, I have read:

  • 61 pages from Detection by Gaslight: 14 Victorian Detective Stories by Douglas Greene [Ed.]. Notes: no update.
  • 26 pages from On Looking: Eleven Walks with Expert Eyes by Alexandra Horowitz. Notes: no update.
  • 150 pages of A Study in Scarlet by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Notes: finished.
  • 141 pages of The Sign of the Four by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Notes: finished.
  • 295 pages of The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Notes: still reading.
  • 232 pages of Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic by Alison Bechdel. Notes: finished.
  • 100 pages of Medical Apartheid: The Dark History of Medical Experimentation on Black Americans from Colonial Times to the Present by Harriet Washington. Notes: no update.
  • 100 (manuscript) pages of my friend’s WIP. Notes: finished.
  • 39 pages of The Seven-Per-Cent Solution by Nicholas Meyer. Notes: this is a re-read for a paper; I’m comparing this with “The Final Problem” for class.

Running page count: 1,144

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Top Ten Tuesday: Authors Whose Books I Collect

Today’s Top Ten Tuesday is the top ten authors who I own the most books by.

In order:

  • 27 books by Tamora Pierce — I love Tammy’s works. I still faithfully collect each new book that she writes, and I am planning to buy the one or two I’m missing when I’ve cash again. Her Tortall books especially were amazing to me, featuring half main characters of colour, fat characters, queer characters, and all of them very human and lovable.
  • 22 books by Neil Gaiman — Though I disagree with plenty of his actions as a person, and some of the artistic choices he has made are problematic, I still rather enjoy his writing. This count includes the comics of his that I have.
  • 18 books by Sir Terry Pratchett — The Light Fantastic was the first fantasy novel I read from the adult section at the library, and I’ve adored Sir Terry ever since.
  • 16 books by Anne Rice — I collected as many of her books as I could when I was ten, and never got rid of the bulk of them, even though they’re a bit crap.
  • 15 books by Mercedes Lackey — She has a book trilogy that centres around the first queer character I ever read about. If only he didn’t continuously fall prey to the “tragic gay” trope…
  • 12 books by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle — I have 3 copies of the collected Sherlock Holmes, and then individual volumes of all the novels and the story collections. (I also have several books about ACD and Holmes, and several pastiches.) I’m taking an English class about Victorian detective lit and the Holmes stories. Suffice to say, I really like Sherlock Holmes.
  • 10 books by Roger Zelazny — As with Anne Rice, I spent a year around age 10 hunting down used copies of the Chronicles of Amber, which was out of print at the time. Unlike Anne Rice, I’m still pretty fiercely devoted to this series, and have actually read and re-read all of the books.
  • 10 books by Robert Jordan — I stopped reading the Wheel of Time at book 3, but kept collecting them so I could finish the series when it was complete. Still need the last few.
  • 8 books by Diane Duane — I really enjoyed the first book of her Young Wizards series, So You Want to be a Wizard, and continued on as books came out. I’m a little behind–I’m missing one of the books, and I haven’t been reading the spin off series, but I still love these books.
  • 8 books by Michelle West — I stumbled across Michelle West’s Sun Sword series when I was 14 or so, and I love it. It definitely fits the general high fantasy trope of having real world countries with the labels taken off, but the magic and demons and cultures are a lot of fun. I also have two of the House War books.

This generally does not count the digital files I have, just physical books, or The Dresden Files would be up here because I have the first 13 books on my Kindle. So, yeah, these are a (small) selection of the books on my shelves, and generally include most of my favourite authors.

July Read-a-Thon Update: Day 18

Such a busy weekend! I’ve plenty of writing to get done today, but my reading is coming along quite well, also.

Currently I have read:

  • 61 pages from Detection by Gaslight: 14 Victorian Detective Stories by Douglas Greene [Ed.]. Notes: no update.
  • 26 pages from On Looking: Eleven Walks with Expert Eyes by Alexandra Horowitz. Notes: no update.
  • 150 pages of A Study in Scarlet by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Notes: finished.
  • 141 pages of The Sign of the Four by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Notes: finished.
  • 231 pages of The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Notes: and the re-read continues…
  • 232 pages of Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic by Alison Bechdel. Notes: finished.
  • 100 pages of Medical Apartheid: The Dark History of Medical Experimentation on Black Americans from Colonial Times to the Present by Harriet Washington. Notes: there’s such a wealth of information in this book. I’m fascinated by so much that I’m learning.
  • 100 (manuscript) pages of my friend’s WIP. Notes: finished.

Running page count: 1,041

July Read-a-Thon Update: Day 16

I’m getting a lot more reading done this Read-a-Thon. The June one was shorter, yes, but I also just have way more reading to do, and I have to prioritise it, because it’s for class!

Still loving my re-read of the Sherlock Holmes canon, and I’m really enjoying a lot of the reading for my non-fiction writing class–have read a couple of memoirs I would not have picked up on my own.

Number of pages I have read so far:

  • 61 pages from Detection by Gaslight: 14 Victorian Detective Stories by Douglas Greene [Ed.]. Notes: no update.
  • 26 pages from On Looking: Eleven Walks with Expert Eyes by Alexandra Horowitz. Notes: no update.
  • 150 pages of A Study in Scarlet by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Notes: finished.
  • 141 pages of The Sign of the Four by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Notes: finished.
  • 229 pages of The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Notes: still reading!
  • 232 pages of Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic by Alison Bechdel. Notes: finished.
  • 52 pages of Medical Apartheid: The Dark History of Medical Experimentation on Black Americans from Colonial Times to the Present by Harriet Washington. Notes: I’m behind on this one—I ought to be at 100 pages—but I’m getting through. Still a difficult read.
  • 100 (manuscript) pages of my friend’s WIP. Notes: finished.

Running page count: 991

July Read-a-Thon Update: Day 14

So swamped! Just started my third class for the summer, so that’s another pile of reading on… Whew!

Page count to this point:

  • 61 pages from Detection by Gaslight: 14 Victorian Detective Stories by Douglas Greene [Ed.]. Notes: no update.
  • 26 pages from On Looking: Eleven Walks with Expert Eyes by Alexandra Horowitz. Notes: no update.
  • 150 pages of A Study in Scarlet by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Notes: finished.
  • 141 pages of The Sign of the Four by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Notes: finished.
  • 145 pages of The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Notes: just trucking along…
  • 232 pages of Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic by Alison Bechdel. Notes: finished. I was uncomfortable with Bechdel’s use of pejoratives in describing her father’s sexuality, but aside from that, this was a brilliant work—I blasted through it in one day, because I didn’t want to stop reading.
  • 38 pages of Medical Apartheid: The Dark History of Medical Experimentation on Black Americans from Colonial Times to the Present by Harriet Washington. Notes: this is a hard read, emotionally, but it’s been on my list for a while, and I’m gonna be reading it for a class on scientific racism.
  • 100 (manuscript) pages of my friend’s WIP. Notes: finished.

Running page count: 893

July Read-a-Thon Update: Day 12

I’m struggling to get caught up on writing while balancing reading and getting school work done. I loved the writer’s meet-up on Saturday, though it meant that I didn’t actually get any writing done…

Pages read so far:

  • 61 pages from Detection by Gaslight: 14 Victorian Detective Stories by Douglas Greene [Ed.]. Notes: no update.
  • 26 pages from On Looking: Eleven Walks with Expert Eyes by Alexandra Horowitz. Notes: no update.
  • 150 pages of A Study in Scarlet by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Notes: finished.
  • 141 pages of The Sign of the Four by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Notes: finished.
  • 135 pages of The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Notes: just trucking along…
  • 84 pages of Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic by Alison Bechdel. Notes: wow! This is amazing. The use of a graphic novel format is an interesting one, giving a curious distance and an intimate closeness simultaneously. This is such an excellent read so far, and I am already thinking of who I want to hand it off to once I’m done.
  • 100 (manuscript) pages of my friend’s WIP. Notes: I got the chance to read my amazingly talented friend’s manuscript and offer feedback. It’s going through revisions now, and then it’ll go off to the editor, and hopefully get published soon. I feel privileged to be trusted with alpha reader status for my friend, who is a stunningly good writer!

Running page count: 697

July Read-a-Thon Update: Day 10

I was far more exhausted than I expected to be! Lots of sleeping and relaxing, and now I’m getting caught up on my writing for Camp NaNo.

Pages read so far:

  • 61 pages from Detection by Gaslight: 14 Victorian Detective Stories by Douglas Greene [Ed.]. Notes: no update.
  • 26 pages from On Looking: Eleven Walks with Expert Eyes by Alexandra Horowitz. Notes: no update.
  • 150 pages of A Study in Scarlet by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Notes: finished.
  • 141 pages of The Sign of the Four by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Notes: finished.
  • 108 pages of The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Notes: the stories are quite short—shorter than I remember them being! It’s very episodic, and the ends tend to wrap things up fairly neatly, often with punchy quotes and situations that echo earlier parts of the story or past stories. Still really enjoying it, and seeing where recent adaptations have been faithful or have departed.

I’m headed to a writer meet-up now, which means transit reading. I’m excited to start on reading for the next week, which includes more Sherlock Holmes, Fun Home by Alison Bechdel for my creative non-fiction class, and Medical Apartheid by Harriet Washington for my Scientific Racism course.

Running page count: 486

July Read-a-Thon Update: Day 8

Wow—what a trip! I spent all day yesterday at the Make Progress National Summit (I’m planning write-ups about the panels I attended), and then visited the White House today for a group meeting with the associate director of public engagement. The meeting was about priority issues that millennials are interested in, and he kindly took questions from us all for an hour.

Now, I’m at the airport, waiting for my flight back home. I’m excited for all the plane reading I’ll get to do, and to be back home and get some writing done. I didn’t get much  reading or writing done while here, sad to say, but I had a great experience nonetheless.

Pages read so far:

  • 61 pages from Detection by Gaslight: 14 Victorian Detective Stories by Douglas Greene [Ed.]. Notes: no update.
  • 26 pages from On Looking: Eleven Walks with Expert Eyes by Alexandra Horowitz. Notes: no update.
  • 150 pages of A Study in Scarlet by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Notes: now finished. Didn’t get it done by Sunday night, because I had school work to do and packing to finish and writing to get through. Still, it’s done now, and quite as good as I remember it being.
  • 141 pages of The Sign of the Four by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Notes: aaaannd finished. There’s definitely some racism indicative of the time, and I made awkward faces a couple times, but still a good read. And the end references the beginning in an amusing way.
  • 21 pages of The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Notes: it’s interesting to observe what pieces of the original stories were preserved in the recent BBC adaptation, and what parts were cut for time and modernity’s sake. Also, obviously, to have an overarching villain, they’ve shuffled things around and expanded the role of Moriarty in the show. I rather prefer the books/stories in this respect, though I have always preferred faithfulness in adaptation to a large degree—which is why, I suppose, I’m not a screenwriter. (An exception can be made for re-imaginings, in my view, but not change for change’s sake alone, which is what I sometimes feel Like Moffat has done. But he’s show-runner, not I, so…)

Boarding begins soon, and then I’ll have a long stretch of sitting before me. Have a good day, all!

Running page count: 399

July Read-a-Thon Update: Day 6

Y’all, I am in Washington DC. This is amazing!

I came last July, but didn’t have any time to myself for sight-seeing—the best I managed was a selfie in front of the White House at 8 in the morning. Today, I totally have the chance to sight-see, and I’m gonna do it.

That said, here’s my page count up to now:

  • 61 pages from Detection by Gaslight: 14 Victorian Detective Stories by Douglas Greene [Ed.]. Notes: no update.
  • 26 pages from On Looking: Eleven Walks with Expert Eyes by Alexandra Horowitz. Notes: no update.
  • 150 pages of A Study in Scarlet by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Notes: now finished. Didn’t get it done by Sunday night, because I had schoolwork to do and packing to finish and writing to get through. Still, it’s done now, and quite as good as I remember it being.
  • 85 pages of The Sign of the Four by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Notes: more than halfway through this one. Anticipate it will be done by tonight. Cooling off in a Starbucks now, so I’ll probably read some before braving the humidity again.

I’m trying not to get heat-stroke or dehydrate here—it’s seriously bad compared to Portland. Also, DC is not the most pedestrian-friendly place I’ve ever been…

Still, I have been to the Dr Martin Luther King Jr Memorial, and I’m headed to the Library of Congress (because of course I am). Still have an essay to finish but I’ve got some time before I can even check in to my hotel, so I’m enjoying being in DC!

Running page count: 322

July Read-a-Thon Update: Day 4

Doing a read-a-thon and NaNoWriMo session at the same time is a lot of time spent reading and writing!

Checked off my list: over 4,000 words towards my 40,000 word Camp NaNo goal—including 1,000 words of poetry, 1,000 words on a photo essay about my family’s military history for my creative non-fiction class, and work on my memoir—and about a quarter of the reading I need done by Tuesday.

I’ve been making an effort to stay at least one day ahead on my NaNo writing, but I want to get 2-3 days ahead before I leave for Washington DC on Monday night, since I won’t have guaranteed internet access again until Thursday evening, when I get back.

Page count so far:

  • 61 pages from Detection by Gaslight: 14 Victorian Detective Stories by Douglas Greene [Ed.]. Notes: no update.
  • 26 pages from On Looking: Eleven Walks with Expert Eyes by Alexandra Horowitz. Notes: This one is fascinating. Horowitz is both informative and informal in tone, dropping in tidbits of the wealth of information her companions shared on their walks, and inspiring me to be more mindful of the world around me. I highly recommend this book! I think I may finish it on the plane to DC!
  • 26 pages of A Study in Scarlet by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Notes: The first of the Sherlock Holmes reading! I’m very excited, and remembering how very much I love these stories. I want to finish this one today (I’m ambitious that way) and move on to the next reading for tomorrow.

Coming up: the rest of A Study in Scarlet, The Sign of the Four, and four stories from The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes. Hopefully, I’ll also get to 22,837 words on my manuscript, which will mean it won’t matter if I don’t write in DC.

Running page count: 113

July Read-a-Thon Is About to Start!

Check that turn-around time! The July Trees-of-Reverie Read-a-thon starts tomorrow, and I’m excited.

I’m in the thick of classes now, so this time I’m gonna track my school reading. Y’all will get a look at what I’ve been assigned for my courses, and hopefully you’ll get to discover a book that interests you.

Books read so far for class: selections from Requiem for a Paper Bag by Davy Rothbart [Ed.], selections from The Works of Edgar Allan Poe by Edgar Allan Poe, The Moonstone by Wilkie Collins, An Extraordinary Theory of Objects by Stephanie LaCava, and selections from On Looking: Eleven Walks with Expert Eyes by Alexandra Horowitz.

Books I’m on track to read within the time-frame of the read-a-thon: more selections from On Looking: Eleven Walks with Expert Eyes by Alexandra Horowitz, Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic by Alison Bechdel, selections from Them: Adventures with Extremists by Jon Ronson, selections from Detection by Gaslight: 14 Victorian Detective Stories by Douglas Greene [Ed.], selections from A Study in Scarlet & The Sign of the Four, selections from The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes & The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes, and The Hound of the Baskervilles by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

That’s a lot of reading, but I have 3 weeks to get it done! You can follow along here on my blog, where I’ll be posting a running page count every other day, on Facebook for quotes and tidbits, on Twitter for late-night ponderings (and updates on Camp NaNoWriMo progress), on Instagram for (what else?) action shots, and on Tumblr for fun questionnaires and community activities.

Let’s get this party started!