Devour WordsNov 7th, 2010 | By Sean Preston | Category: The Razorwise Report
Today, I am beat. The time change always gets me either way it goes, and it takes me a few beats to get adjusted. It always has, but I am here now, at the keyboard, because I made a commitment to crank this thing out every day. I’m used to taking Sundays off to chill or do some “relaxed work” other than writing, such as reading, watching a movie, or playing video games (or even just sleep) which is what I’ve been doing today. I had Psych on and was nodding off while Shaun and Gus solved crimes. It’s the first season, and I discovered I had missed a few of the early ones, so I (sorta) caught those, but I imagine I may need to watch one of them again (because of the sleeping).
Some of the books I read are for pleasure, and some are more oriented directly towards the writing process. I enjoy both kinds, but wanted to give you the two major divisions. I’m going to give you a sampling of things I’ve read/have piled around the worked area which inform the various projects I’m currently working on. I’ll briefly detail what each bring to the table.
1. Writer’s Guide to Character Traits: Don’t make the mistake I did and overlook this fine book. It’s like having a profiler on call–the detail is just right. From the back cover “With more than 400 easy-to-reference lists of traits blended from a variety of behaviors and influences, you’ll gain the knowledge you need to creative distinctive characters…” I’ll give it props, and go along with that. It’s not something I pore over constantly, but it’s there to provide me with options I may otherwise overlook.
2. Borderlands of Science: This book tells you “how to think like a scientists (and write science fiction)” and it provides a lot of technical information distilled down for ready application by the average writer (who is not a scientist). This book can be a heavy read, as the author, writes densely. It’s not something I can read at length, but I keep it close at hand, and flip through it when I want fresh ideas within the realms of credulity.
3. Random House Word Menu: This is a book I’ve had for nearly 20 years. It contains a reverse dictionary broken down by categorized structures, a huge number of gloassaries, an almanac, and a thesarus. The uses for this are tremendous, especially when you have a word on the tip of your tongue. I probably need to get a new copy as the pages are yellowed a bit on this one.
4. HAARP: The Ultimate Weapon of the Conspiracy: This book is posited as fact, and I’ll leave it to the reader to separate fact from fancy within its pages. In any case, I found it engrossing, and has inspired and informed some of my recent works. The writing can be dry in places, but it’s given a lot for me to turn over.
5. A Brief History of Time: I read this book and it is in class all its own. The way Professor Steven Hawking breaks down time and space are mind blowing. We are honored to have him as a contemporary.
There is something about the feel of a book that pixels will never be able to replicate. Enjoy and savor yours as I do mine.
And with that final thought, I bid you adieu!