Scribe Scrawlings


Two Book Give Away--Contest Ends 10/15/09
Winner Announced: Kayla! See post below for full details!


Melissa Rose

What Do You Listen To When You Write?

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Terry Blackstock, Rants, and Other Things.

A customer told me the nicest thing today, she said "It's so nice to have you here because you know so much about the books and authors and you can help me find new stories to enjoy." I must have grinned from ear to ear for about an hour. There is nothing (other than sharing Christ with someone) I like more than helping a customer find a book to read and hearing that they enjoyed it.

Today we were having a run on Terry Blackstock's newest book True Light which is the third in the Last Light series.

Her Last Light is a hybrid of mystery and fantasy that asks the question "What would happen if the world no longer had power?" And we are talking about no power as in cars don't work, computers don't work, cell phones don't work, back to the horse and buggy and fire and hauling water from the creek. It really is a fascinating study on interpersonal relationships in the family and in the community in suburbia. In addition to the hardships that the main characters are facing, there's a break in and a murder in the middle of the night in their community. One neighbor stands accused, one neighbor is guilty, and there is a vigilante mob armed with rifles looking to lynch one or the other.

True Light will hit hard for anyone with teenage sons. I'm not giving anything away if I tell you that a teenager is shot for his ten-point buck at the beginning of her latest tale, the boy was hunting to feed his family too, and so giddy with delight over bringing the buck down and knowing he'd helped his Dad. That's no more than the teaser inside the book. Normally I'd say that was on the back cover but it's not, there's this HUGE picture of Terry Blackstock there instead.

That really annoys me, first thing that arrests my attention when I'm browsing in a book store is the books' cover, and then I flip it over to read the synopsis and reviews that you find on the back. When I find a HUGE picture of the author there instead I am very likely to put the book back down on the shelf and move onto the next. In my opinion the publisher of that book is saying "Oh this is so-and-so and whatever they write is outstanding, and you dear reader will buy it and read it just because they wrote it. "


I choose books on based on plot, not on who wrote them. Yes, I do enjoy certain authors but I don't like or don't read everything they write. I didn't like Angelmass and I didn't read Manta's Gift and I love their author, Timothy Zahn. I haven't read Ten Little Indians by Agatha Christie and I didn't like Taken at the Floor or Mystery of the Blue Train but I love most of her things, my favorite being The Man in the Brown Suit. I haven't read Uncharted or The Novelist or The Good Nearby by Angela Hunt but I love her Brothers and Dreamer and Canopy. I am picky about plot and character and there are many times I'll skip a book an author's written and wait for the next one to come out or move on to another author in the same genre if I think that they are headed in a direction I don't like. So, those huge photos of the author on the back are a real irritant, and almost make me not want to buy the book.

Okay, here's a *SPOILER* alert for True Light, enough of my grousings. Look away if you want to be totally surprised.


In True Light there's more development of the character of Mark, and a brilliant scene involving port-a-potties that 'shows' instead of preaching. It's smaller girth wise than the other books, but the overwhelming theme in it is forgiveness. From the sheriff's son who has to forgive what the inmates did to his father, to Mark's having to forgive what is done to him, to the young teen having to forgive his parents this book revolves around that point, and does it so well that you'll likely read it in one sitting. Don't miss the word from Terry either, I think that Christ will use it to encourage you as He has me.


Eve said...

I so agree with you. A small pic on the inside back flap is enough. We don't want to know too much about the author, just what they write. :)

It does seem like flaunting a bit.

everlastingscribe said...

Glad to know I'm not the only one.

Poll Results

What Do You Notice First About A Book?
RESULTS! Closed 11/11/09

My attention's always grabbed by the cover-53%

I look on the spine for the author's name-6%

The thicker books are the one that grab my notice-26%

I open the book up to the middle and burry my nose in the pages, sniffing. Scent is important-0%

I flip the book over, ignore the cover and the spine and get to the book blurb-13%

Pick Your Weapon! RESULTS! Closed-11/03/09

Hand and Half Sword-16%
Long Bow-25%
Pen-25 %

What Kind of Fan Are You? RESULTS! Closed-10/22/09

Shy. I like reading books but I don't want to meet the authors-15%

Avid. I've read everything my favorite author has written!-38%

Curious. I've e-mailed my favorite author or left comments on the blog and asked them questions-38%

What Kind of Word Smith Are You? RESULTS!-Closed 10/15/09

I focus on setting-22%
I focus on dialogue-22%
I focus on action-22%
I focus on characters-33%

What Kind of Reader Are You? RESULTS!-Closed 10/07/09

I try and guess where the story is going to go-44%
I read the book and think how I would have written it differently-0%
I race through the story, riding the words like a rollarcoaster-22%
I race through the book and then go back and read my favorite parts again and again-33%

What Kind of Writer Are You? RESULTS!

Character first--1%
Plot First--4%
Balanced Between Plot and Character--5%
All Over The Place--5%

So All Over The Place and Balanced Between Plot and Character tie for the win! All I can say is that there must be some wicked stories out there. I can't wait to read them!

Scribe is Listening to:


Chronicles of Narnia Prince Caspian Sound Track.

Books on CD: The Moving Finger Read by Martin Jarvis. Original story by: Agatha Christie

Scribe is Reading:

I am? COOL!

I'm apparently referring to myself in the third person too. Go figure.


Nightmare's Edge by: Bryan Davis

The Invention of Hugo Cabert (Caldecott Book) by: Brian Selzinck-FINISHED. Mind blowing! Every storyteller should read this book.

FEARLESS by: Max Lucado-FINISHED. Excellent!

NLT Chronological 24/7 Bible paperback
NASB Online at Bible Gateway


Psalm 49

Psalm 49
A Psalm of Repentance

About Me

My photo
I tell stories all day long. Some with my pen, some with my keyboard and if you can find me, buy me a coffee and I'll tell you one too!