Cool Stuff

In my humble opinion, the best things in life are recommended. I wouldn’t discover a fraction of the things I enjoy if awesome people didn’t tell me about awesome things they’ve discovered. So in the spirit of paying it forward, here are some things I’ve been doing and enjoying over the past few weeks in between mad sessions of writing.

From the Blogosphere:

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Here we see Stock Photo Lady reading these blogs. Or high as a kite. Either way, she’s happy!

All The Trinkets – I’ve linked Kate’s blog a time or two before, but it’s worth giving a shout out again. All the Trinkets is a collection of advice and thought provoking content that is always positive and uplifting. It’s a great read to help center yourself on a stressful day, or inspiring you to make a good day better.

James Harrington’s Blog of Geek and Writing – It’s nice when a blog’s title makes it clear what to expect when you go to it. James’ blog is full of great insights into the mindset of writers, and has sample chapters of his own writing as well as other geeky content. He’s published multiple books, so he knows his stuff.

The Official LT Anderson – A couple of awesome people, Les and Taylor Anderson are a father/daughter writing duo. In addition to being a hub for their novel, Absorbing Lives, the Andersons also do indie book reviews. If you’re looking for good indie reads, they have impeccable taste – and I’m not just saying that because they loved Weird Theology. (Which, by the way, they did.)

Failing at Writing – In what may be the most relatable title for a blog about writing I’ve ever seen, Failing at Writing is a great collection of musings on the act of writing. Perfect for any author, or really anyone who likes reading how writers think.

Books and Audiobooks:

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You can never, ever, have too many books. 

 

A Wonderful Catastrophe – Colette Love Hilliard teaches at a high school near my home, and since I love to support local authors, I happily purchased her first book even though I’d never heard of “blackout poetry” before. This collection was an amazing introduction to this seriously cool art form, as Colette’s words are powerful and her images are stunning. You can learn more about Colette’s work on her Instagram and website.

The Name of the Wind – Patrick Rothfuss’ Kingkiller Chronicles, of which The Name of the Wind is the first, has won so many accolades and awards, I sometimes feel like I’m the last person on Earth to have read them. However, in case I’m not, I finally did get around to reading the first two books and absolutely loved them – they’re masterpieces of modern fantasy. The audiobooks are excellently narrated by Nick Podehl, so it’s a win win with this series. Fair warning – book two was releases in 2011, and book three does not have a release date yet.

The Lies of Locke Lamora – The first book of Scott Lynch’s Gentleman Bastards series, The Lies of Locke Lamora is something I’d read before, but just got around to listening to on audio, after it was recommended to me by one of my readers. This is a wonderful example of how audiobooks can bring new life to a familiar tale, because even though I’d read the book several times, Michael Page’s incredible performance took the experience to a whole new level. A well written and hilarious story that is one part epic fantasy to two parts heist thriller, it’s definitely worth a read, as are the sequels. Fair warning here as well – there is not currently a release date for book four, which has been pushed back a couple of times.

Chosen – I believe I’ve mentioned Casey White’s Flameweaver Saga here before, but the fourth and final book, Ascendant, is about to come out, so this is a great time to pick it up. Featuring a unique twist on the typical chosen one story, Chosen sucked me in like nothing else. Definitely worth your time and effort.

A Way to Support a Great Cause:

Donor’s Choose – There’s a good chance you’re familiar with GoFundMe, and Donor’s Choose is a similar site, but targeted directly for helping teachers. The projects on Donor’s Choose are created by dedicated, creative teachers who are constantly striving to provide the very best for their students. You can search by level of urgency, project type, or area (to specifically support local schools, or your own alma mater). My first experience with Donor’s Choose was helping to buy a contemporary classroom library for a local school, and it was awesome to read the teacher’s reflection and student thank you letters and realize how much my donation helped these students. Even small donations help to make a big difference. Highly, highly recommended.

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I don’t have a funny caption here. I just want to share how damn cute my cat is when he sleeps. Look at him. Painfully cute. 

If you have any recommendations for me, leave them in the comments below! And if you want something to while away an afternoon, you can get a free copy of Rumors here, or check out my new Instagram page here!

 

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