Tag Archives: booking through thursday

Booking Through Thursday: Cold Weather Reading

This week’s question on Booking Through Thursday is weather appropriate.

When the weather is cold and blustery, would you rather read something is equally wintery? Or something to take you as far away from the snow as possible?

The Philippines, while a tropical country, still experiences bouts of cold weather around November to February. I used to live up in the mountains, and when it hits 15C that’s pretty cold for me. Doesn’t seem like much for folks who actually experience winter, but for us, that’s close to freezing. 🙂

My choice of books isn’t affected by the weather at all. I don’t quite care what I’m reading so long as it’s good read. Although of course, it stands that many of the books I would purchase around this time usually has a Christmas or winter theme, which is probably a marketing strategy by publishers.

Bottomline, good book + cold weather = good times.

[Booking Through Thursday] For a Friend

It’s been a while since I participated in Booking Through Thursday. This week’s (or rather, last) question is:

If someone you know has just published a book—do you feel obliged to buy a copy? Even if it’s not the kind of book you’d normally read?

This has happened to me before. A friend of mine decided to write for romance stories for a local publisher. I wouldn’t think twice about buying her work, but it was written in Filipno, the Philippines’ official language. Even though I speak it, reading is another matter. I’m more comfortable reading and writing in English, so it was a challenge for me to read my friend’s work. Thankfully, I was able to read and understand it. Since then, she’s published more books and even translated a few English books into Filipino (the ironic thing is, my friend is even worse with writing and reading Filipino, but she improved over the years). However, I haven’t been able to keep up with her newer works, but she doesn’t really mind.

The number of people I know who have published works have increased. Thankfully, there has been (so far!) no pressure for me to buy their books. I do anyway, because I really do like to support them and the local publishing industry, and I really enjoy their works.

Don’t forget to check out Booking Through Thursday and join in the fun.

Booking Through Thursday: Fanfiction

What do you think of fanfiction? In general—do you think it’s a fun thing or a trespass on an author/producer’s world? And of course, obviously specific authors have very firm and very differing opinions about this, yet it’s getting more popular and more mainstream all the time. Do you ever read or write it yourself?

The first fan fiction I’ve ever read was of the anime series Ranma 1/2. This was back in the early 2000s, and I wasn’t happy with the way manga-ka Rumiko Takahashi left Ranma and Akane’s story as open-ended. I had stumbled across fan fiction quite accidentally, and while I have read many terrible works, there were still plenty of great ones that filled the gaps and what kids these days now call “feels”.

Over the years I’ve read fan fiction of the fandoms that I loved: Harry Potter, Danny Phantom, ​Sailor Moon… even encountering some zany cross-overs (Louis-Philippe Giroux​’s Lines of Destiny remains my favorite, even though the author as discontinued it and someone else has gotten his permission to continue it).

I have tried my hand at writing fan fiction too, particularly back in the days when I first started reading them. These stories were written in longhand, spanning several notebooks and various pieces of paper that I can no longer keep track of.​ After a time I’ve started writing on the computer, but none of these will ever see the light of day (mostly because I think they’re terrible and I haven’t got time to encode and edit them). However, I have published one very short Harry Potter fan fiction and an unfinished one over at FanFiction.net.

Obviously, I am a fan of fan fiction. That isn’t to say that I don’t respect what the writers who do not support it feel about it. If they don’t like their fans writing fan fiction about their work, they are well within their rights to say so and do something about it. I can also understand why they don’t want it, as authors tend to feel protective about their characters like they were their children, and take pride in how they wrote it. It’s also one of the reasons why I don’t publish my fan fiction, or when I do, I try to write them in a way I feel the author would.

For me, writing and reading fan fiction fills the holes that the original work failed to do. Not that I don’t love them any less, but I want more. The variety of fan fiction works gives me options that allow me to find what it is exactly that I want to fulfill. For example, I’m frustrated that Jo March and Laurie Lawrence (Little Women by Louisa May Alcott) did not end up together, so fanfics give me alternatives. Maybe they got together after a few years, or when they were older. Nothing will change the original story, but for a moment, I feel better about them.

Of course, there are many issues when it comes to fanfiction, particularly along the lines of plagiarism. It’s a pretty grey area, especially if the fanfic writers established that they do not own any of the characters or worlds, but have exercised some liberties but still acknowledge the rights of the original author. There are recent issues as well, particularly in the case of Cassandra Claire, which I won’t go deeper into. But for fun, I think fan fiction is all right. It’s good practice for aspiring authors. Just be considerate of the original author’s wishes and never ever claim others’ work for your own.

P.S. Rainbow Rowell’s Fangirl gives insight on the world of fan fiction and the mind of a fanfic writer.

Booking Through Thursday: Anticipation

Booking Through Thursday:

What’s the last book you were really EXCITED to read? And, were you excited about it in advance? Or did the excitement bloom while you were reading it? Are there any books you’re excited about right NOW?

The last book I remember being very, very excited to read that I was ready to bargain with my aunt if I could buy her copy, was “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows”. I never managed to pre-order it, or even get in line for any events for it, but I wanted an early copy so badly. My aunt said she was getting one and I begged her to let me read it as soon as she got it, even before she could read it.

I remember reading the last few chapters while we were in a party at her home. No one could talk to me because I was so busy reading. I was waiting for the book even before it came out. I was a fan of the series from the beginning, and I eagerly waited for the next book as soon as I finished the last.

Right now, I don’t think I’m looking forward to reading anything. If J.K. Rowling’s going to be releasing anything new (even if it’s not in Potterverse), I’d gladly read it.

On art class, dishwashing and BTT

I’m so excited. I finally got to sign up for the watercolor workshop in UP Diliman College of Fine Arts. Classes will run for four consecutive days, from 9 AM to 4 PM. As I failed to get into CFA last school year, well, this is the best I can.

Why only now? First off, most of the classes I find are far more expensive than this. Worse, it’s usually for just a weekend class. Second, it’s based in a place that’s near my place (all others were in Makati or way south). Third, well, I’m biased. It’s UP. :p Now if the UPB profs were teaching summer workshops I’d be more than happy to go to Baguio for a week just to study art. Hehe.

I’m also giddy because I was given a list of materials I need to bring. I love getting stationery and art supplies. Sometimes I get them and hardly use them. I’ve got the brushes and the other stuff on the list, but I may need to get a new set of paint because my current set is already dry inside the tubes. I can still use them, but maybe not for this. I browsed through the usual sources for these materials, and I’ve found what I need so far. With the exception of the paper (which I already knew would be expensive), everything was right on the money. I’ll probably go buy what I need this weekend.

Meditation
Doing a regular (if rather mundane) task such as washing the dishes can be relaxing. Before you write me off as a loon, think about it. Washing the dishes isn’t really a brain activity right? Your body moves automatically, freeing up your mind to wander. Of course you have to take care that the dishes won’t slip, or you won’t get hurt if you’re washing sharp objects. Still, it’s not like you need to really engage your brain unlike in cooking.

Wala lang. Naisip ko lang habang nag huhugas ako ng mga plato kagabi.

Booking Through Thursday: Age-Appropriate

Do you read books “meant” for other age groups? Adult books when you were a child; Young-Adult books now that you’re grown; Picture books just for kicks … You know … books not “meant” for you. Or do you pretty much stick to what’s written for people your age?

When I was a kid, my parents never really said I couldn’t read certain books. I never heard “That’s not for your age” or something similar. I guess that made me open to reading everything I can get my hands on. I’d think a book isn’t “for me” halfway through reading it. Usually, it’s more on how I feel that determines it.

At the age of eight I was reading Edith Hamilton’s Greek Mythology and loved it. At the age of thirty I still browse through the YA section of the bookstore to look for good reads. The openness and lack of restrictions when it comes to reading made me realize early on what I liked and what I didn’t. I didn’t care if it were age-appropriate or not. So long as I liked it, I’d read it. 🙂

And this week’s impulse buy is also book related (as seen also on my Project 365)

Kitty bookmark on Ruth Reichl's book

BTT: Coming Soon To A Theater Near You

Today’s BTT question is:

If you could see one book turned into the perfect movie–one that would capture everything you love, the characters, the look, the feel, the story–what book would you choose?

Off the top of my head, I would say it’s Jostein Gaarder’s “The Solitaire Mystery”. I think it’s got the right amount of adventure and whimsey that would appeal to a lot of people. Plus, it’s a story within a story (which is something we’ve seen in recent movies like Inception and Sucker Punch).

Personally, I think it would look great as an animated film, a la Hayao Miyazaki. Then again, if it were something like Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland it would also work.

BTT: Something Old, Something New

I haven’t participated in Booking Through Thursday for a long time! I’ve missed it, so here I am again.

All other things being equal–do you prefer used books? Or new books? (The physical speciman, that is, not the title.) Does your preference differentiate between a standard kind of used book, and a pristine, leather-bound copy?

I find this question really fitting as my “comeback” to BTT. I love books, no question. New or old (secondhand), I love them. However, the cost of books often has me reaching for secondhands more than brand new ones, especially since I can buy four books to the price of one brand new paperback.

I don’t collect first editions or those leather-bound books, so I’m set with my choices. That isn’t to say that I don’t want to have first edition copies, especially if it’s of my favorite titles. Since my need is to read, I’m good with used books. Also, I find a lot of very good condition paperbacks in used book stores. I’m very good at sniffing them out, much to the delight/ire of my friends (their reaction depends on whether they have the budget to buy the book or not).

Then again, if I really want a book so bad and I can’t wait for a used copy, I’ll shell out the amount I need to get a new copy. Hey, I’ve stood in line for new book releases, and I’ve reserved a lot of books even before the release date. I’m not so very picky… not really.

To know more about my fascination with used books and used book stores, you can read “The Art of Book Hunting“. Some things may apply not just to the Philippine setting.

How about you? 🙂

BTT: Mark the spot

Booking Through Thursday

What items have you ever used as a bookmark? What is the most unusual item you’ve ever used or seen used?

Here are a couple of bookmarks I’ve used.

A – an erasing sheet
B -A napkin holder made out of cardboard and ribbons. It was originally in a tube form but I opened it up to how it looks now
C – calling card (any)
D – a playing card
E – an actual bookmark from Kinokuniya

Other bookmarks I’ve used: Photos, laminated photocards, receipts, bills, money, my finger, other books, a pencil (but I never push it to the spine, just leave it between the pages), a sheet of Post It… quite a lot 🙂

BTT: Weeding

Booking Through Thursday

When’s the last time you weeded out your library?

Been a while since I last answered this. Usually, I’m the first haha. 🙂

Hmm, I think it was some few months ago, when I was looking for books that I could add to my online store.

I’ve moved around a bit in the last five years: from my grandparent’s house to a boarding house to this condo. In the last move, I decided to leave all my books in the province, but occasionally, I’d bring a book or two here. I’ve managed to build a collection of additional books, so the ones I have in the province plus this… let’s just say that if I have my own house, I need a room just for the books.

Before, I’d rather not get rid of any of the books because there’s a certain attachment to each and every one of them. Plus, there’s the thought that “I’d read/use this again one day,” which somehow stops me from chucking away any book. Except perhaps the textbooks.

But I still have the encyclopedia sets we had when I was a kid. Hey, it’s a Charlie Brown Encyclopedia set! I can’t let that go, ever.

When I feel like I have to let a book go, I read it one last time and I try to remember why I liked it in the first place. If I couldn’t, it goes to the “must go” pile. As I mentioned, I add it to my “for sale” pile. Thankfully, quite a few have gone to good homes. 🙂

BTT: TBR

Booking Through Thursday

Follow-up to last week’s question:

Do you keep all your unread books together, like books in a waiting room? Or are they scattered throughout your shelves, mingling like party-goers waiting for the host to come along?

In times when I purchased more than one or two books at a time, the books are usually stacked somewhere on the floor by my bed. I have no bedside table, unfortunately :p But that isn’t because of any preference. I do most of my reading in bed, so it’s more for my convenience so as soon as I finish one book, I can easily grab the next one. 🙂