Friday, February 19, 2016

The Joys of Reading and the Pains of Writing

I have two things I wanted to write about today. First, the books I ended up reading on our vacation to Kauai. 

Terry Pratchett Discworld books: I'm a very orderly person, so I started with Book 1. The prologue (not a huge fan of prologues) really seemed like a mess to me, and after reading a few pages I just couldn't get into it. SciFi can be a difficult genre. But then I decided to try book #2, which was a huge improvement. Then I got hooked, and have been gobbling up these very entertaining books. (Even went back to book #1! If he would just stop beginning his books with that darn turtle...) Great vacation reads. It helps to know that Pratchett is British--just in terms of getting the humor. 
The Honest Truth About Dishonesty-by Dan Ariely. Thought it was great, of course. It had some fascinating insights into religion and it's effects on honesty. 
Alexander McCall Smith: I took one of his books about a WWII orchestra. I like his books; however, I always feel like I'm reading something insightful, but by the end I can't remember exactly what insights I actually got. 
The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry: -by Rachel Joyce. This book made me cry a few times. It was somehow not satisfying though. I can't quite put my finger on it. 
Come, Tell Me How You Live. -Agatha Christie. I really like Agatha Christie's novels-- they are great vacation reads--so it was fun to get to know her better through these humorous autobiographical sketches. It was also an interesting look at the Arab culture from the white British perspective. (Actually turned out not quite as racist as I was expecting.)    
Midnight Riot -by Ben Aaronovitch. This guy used to write for "Doctor Who," so expect something along those lines. I liked it, not as much as The Rook though, which has a similar setting.  
Cinder -by Marissa Meyer. This one disappointed. It was an okay vacation read, but not as awesome and original as I was hoping it would be. 

Which brings me to my next point: The Pains of Writing! I finally came up with a book idea which I like, so my strategy of starting to write even though I didn't have a great idea off the bat turned out to be a good one. Now that I have started writing this book, I feel very disinclined to criticize any book. I felt guilty just writing the criticism above about the books I read on vacation. Because you know what? At least these people wrote a book, and that deserves our admiration. I can't even write one book, (working on it though) so who am I to criticize? 

Anyway, I'm unsure as to if I should keep writing in my travel blog. I'd rather use that time for working on this book, and on this last trip it was kind of annoying having to remember to take pictures of things rather than just enjoy them. I'll think about it.