Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Reading Round Up

When I started this blog, one of the things I wanted to talk about is books. As a writer it’s important to read, and read a lot. Well I’ve been trying to do just that and I wanted to share two books of which I just finished reading.

The first book I want to talk about is K.M. Weiland’s Outlining Your Novel: Map Your Way to Success. This is an excellent read that I would recommend to any author who's on the fence as to whether or not they are a "pantser" or an "outliner". I learned that I am most certainly an outliner, but the thing that this book enforces, that I really like, is that it encourages you to outline creatively, whether that means doodling characters and scenes, mind mapping, or writing your own reviews to gain a sense of your goals.

 A lot of people think outlining will take the va voom out of their writing journey, which for some people it does, but I like how the author approached the outlining process and enforced creatively putting together a rough plan that will keep you on track and help you to avoid writing yourself into a corner. I think this is something I struggle with a lot. After it's all said and done, some of us (like me) just want to go, get started, and light those keys on fire as you blaze through the first draft. Mrs. Weiland encourages readers to slow down a little and scribble out that rough plan in whatever words necessary to get that plan on paper. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone looking for a good read on writing craft.

My Rating (on a scale from 1 to 5): ****

Writers often look upon outlines with fear and trembling. But when properly understood and correctly used, the outline is one of the most powerful weapons in a writer’s arsenal. With the help of the book Outlining Your Novel: Map Your Way to Success, you will learn how to choose the right type of outline for you, brainstorm plot ideas, and discover your characters.”

Outlining Your Novel: Map Your Way to Success is published by Pen For A Sword Publishing and is 192 pages in length.

You can find K.M. Weiland's Website here.


The second book I finished reading recently is Julie Kagawa's The Iron King. This book started off quite quickly getting to the punch after only a few short chapters. Meghan Chase is a heroine you can root for and totally agree with. The scenery depicted is beautiful and represents each of the faery courts perfectly. The romance aspect of the book didn't come into play until halfway through the book and seemed a little sudden and rushed to me. If I could've made any suggestions, I would've explored that relationship a little further and at least give a little more foundation for Meghan's love interest. Otherwise, this was a pretty riveting read and I would definitely recommend it to anyone into faeries and faery lore.

My Rating: ****

“Megan Chase has a secret destiny—one she could never have imagined…

Something has always felt slightly off in Meghan’s life, ever since her father disappeared before her eyes when she was six. She has never quite fit in at school…or at home.

 When a dark stranger begins watching her from afar, and her prankster best friend becomes strangely protective of her, Meghan senses that everything she’s known is about to change.

 But she could never have guessed the truth—that she is the daughter of a mythical faery king and is a pawn in a deadly war. Now Meghan will learn just how far she’ll go to save someone she cares about, to stop a mysterious evil no faery creature dare face…and to find love with a young prince who might rather see her dead than let her touch his icy heart.”
The Iron King is published by Harlequin Teen and is 368 pages in length.

You can find The Iron King and other books by Julie Kagawa at her website here.