Thursday, December 30, 2010

Chapter 2010

It is almost time to close out another chapter on this crazy book called Life. 

Chapter 2010 had flawed characters, the non-perfect heroes and the villains with a few admirable traits.  I incorporated action, meaningful dialogue and a lot of looking at things in a different way.  There were scenes of loss and scenes of discovery, unexpected twists and turns and foreshadowing. 
Oh, the foreshadowing.

When I read 2010 aloud, it sounds great.  Send me the next thirty pages. 

I can’t wait to see what the next chapter brings. 

Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

All I Want for Christmas

Tis the season, and I am a gift giver.  Big time.  I love buying gifts, wrapping presents and finding an awesome sale.  I love the smiles, the laughs, the fun that we have opening presents, the games of hide and seek that I still make my adult children play to find certain gifts, and the look on their faces when they open that one thing, that one gift, that makes them say, “How did you know?” 

      Santa told me.   

      But being a gift giver also means that others want to return the generosity.  That is the problem.

I know I must be a difficult person to buy for, because if I want something, I usually just go and get it.  Or, my gift choices are so specific that no-one can possibly get the right size, the right color, the right edition or the right spec’s.  Or I want something that can’t possibly be delivered, such as ‘world peace’ or ‘a body like Jennifer Lopez.’ 

I also have expensive tastes, and I hate to tell anyone that all I want for Christmas is a new Camaro or two weeks in Paris.  My husband, the kindest soul I know, would somehow make that happen and then I would feel guilty when he opened his wife beaters and nose hair clippers. 

Saying, “don’t buy me anything” doesn’t go over too well, either, and the truth is, I would like that perfect gift, that one thing that makes me smile and say “How did you know?”       

This year, however, I have the perfect gift in mind for myself.  It’s inexpensive, easy to find and doesn’t require a truce between world leaders. 
All I want for Christmas?


Wednesday, December 1, 2010

500 Years

My eldest son, a graduate student at GWU, often shares his latest bits of gained wisdom from academia with me.  Last week he told me that a “well-established scholar” had stated that five hundred years from now, the only thing people will study about the twentieth century will be the rise and fall of Adolph Hitler.  Interesting. 
Having a background in Humanities, I hate to say that I agree with this to some extent.  Looking back at history, the small bits that we remember about previous centuries are those that were most reported, not necessarily those that were most important during the time. 
Of course, this led to a discussion of books.  How many brilliant pieces of literature are forever lost from one hundred, two hundred, a thousand years ago?  I don’t believe it is because these great works didn’t have “staying power.”  I believe they have just been lost. 
Five hundred years from now, the books that will be considered the greatest of our time will be those that aren’t lost in the shuffle.  That does not necessarily mean they are the greatest, but our future readers will read---something---and assume that that particular work or author depicted our cultural identity at the time.  What will that be?
My son immediately suggested the Harry Potter series.  If so, our future generation will assume we were all fascinated with magic and will continue to dig into our “history” to find other examples of this fascination so they can “prove” this in some literary journal. 
But, I’m afraid it will be James Patterson.  According to the New York Times, James Patterson has written one out of every seventeen hardcover novels purchased in the United States and of course, his books are published worldwide in several languages.  It’s kind of difficult to lose that many books, even in five hundred years.  What will that say about us as a culture?  Hard to tell.   
But, we might get lucky.  Someday, someone may find a lost collection that will shed a new light on our collective history’s fascination with wizards and crime detectives.  I’m hoping it is something raw and funny, maybe Scott Phillips or Gary Phillips.  Of course, it won’t seem so raw and funny then, which would make the reader five hundred years from now laugh at our innocence.  I kind of like that idea.