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Book Meme

frimfram tagged me for the book meme:

1. Total number of books I own:
Does anyone seriously expect us to count? Um lots, 400-ish? No idea, I’ve never counted them. Two big bookshelves worth (some are doubled up) and some still in boxes in the cupboard. I had a lot more but the ex made me get rid of them.


Shelf 1. Spike is 'aving a fag. A lot of CD ROMs on those shelves.

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Shelf 2. Bigger pic this time, ideal for the more nosy or mskakaako. Glowing white ball is a fake crystal ball. ETA: It was bigger on my PC, I don't know what happened there.

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2. Last book I bought:
Apart from a London A to Z, Oxford Everyday Grammar. As you might have noticed, I haven’t read it yet!

3. Last book read, or am currently reading:
A little embarrassing as I’ve only read one book in four years, Terry’s Prachett’s The Wee Free Men. Fic consumes my reading time, but it’s more writing it than reading it. I am so far behind.
I am currently in the middle of High Fidelity by Nick Hornby, but its too painful for me to read at the moment.

4. 5 Books that mean a lot to me:
I’m not sure that I have books that mean a lot to me. I’m picking 5 authors instead that have been a great influence on my writing.

1. Anne McCaffery. While Anne is easy Sci Fi reading and a touch soapy, it’s Anne’s The Crystal Singer, which was the first adult book I read when I was about 11. Anne opened up all these wonderful worlds to me, and she made me want to write. All my very earliest stories, (some written for school) are heavily influenced by Anne. Best of all, I still love her work. Dragonflight remains my favourite.

2. JRR Tolkien. He set the standard, what else can I say? Apart from I’ll never achieve it. I’m very sensitive about my Tolkien, I hate the thought of people writing in that universe. Except I have. Oh dear. But it was a parody! Tolkien gave me my love of description, and the epic.

3. Tanith Lee. Tanith is probably the biggest influence on what I write and how, though I don’t think it’s all that evident. Her descriptions are beautiful, dark, and sensual and I adore them. Her words just shine and drip with jewels. I’ve never found her an easy read, she’s heavy going at times, but her style is fantastic and so rewarding. I’ve been collecting her work for years and the woman has written tons. I have her books everywhere and I'm still missing loads of them.! She wrote my favourite episode of Blake’s Seven, long before I started reading her work. She’s even written what is apparently AU Blake’s Seven fan fic, Kill the Dead. Rec: Her Flat Earth series, starting with Night’s Master, or any one of her short story collections.

4. William Gibson. When I want something a little less fantastic and more gritty, I always tend to drift to Gibson. I adored Neuromancer, and I really, really, really want to write an AU Cyberpunk Spike story. Alas I lack the skills. Damn.

5. Er… I don’t have a fifth. I have to mention my favouritist book ever, Good Omens, but much as I like Terry Prachett, but I wouldn’t say he was an influence. Oh hang on. Dennis Wheatley! I’d be lying if I didn’t admit that the WIP owes a little to The Devil Rides Out.

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Blimey, that's a tidy desk.

I wish I had a desk that tidy.

In fact, I'm not convinced I have a desk at all. I haven't seen it for a while now - not since all the papers took over.

Anne McCaffrey takes me back. I pined horribly for a dragon as a nipper, and would have given all I had to visit Pern. I've never read Tanith Lee - oddly her name always put me off. I shall now, though.

It's not tidy, I just shoved everything to one end out of shot. It also doubles as my beside table.

My Grandmother also loved Anne McCaffery. I can't say I was ever that bothered about having a dragon though. I wanted the razor blades under the fingernails that Gibson's Molly had. She was cool.

Yes, try Tanith Lee, the Flat Earth books are the best I know of. I haven't read all of them, they take a bit of effort sometimes (I struggled with The Blood of Roses and never finished it.

No, I really wanted a dragon. I cried when they went 'between'.

Bigger pic this time, ideal for the more nosy or mskakaako

Bwah! You know me so well! Heeheee! Also, since I'm very nosy...did you clean up before you took those pics? Inquiring minds want to know. ::nods::

Hey! I met William Gibson before. It was in university when I was working at a bookstore. The only reason why I knew it was him was because I was nosy (heheh) and when I ran his credit card, I asked him if he was *the* William Gibson. After he left, I checked the back of a few of his books to make sure.

Oh, I'm hoping to get to your WIP today!!!! :D

I know you like pictures of cupboards and junk. No I didn't tidy at all, it's all very deceptive (I hate cluttered desks so I just sling it onto the bed). What you can't see is the other half of the desk which is my bedside table which has a load of vrap stacked on top of my laptop.

And what was William buying? (Bogwitches are nosy too.)

This is many years ago, but I think it was just a paperback to tie him over on his flight out (he's a local)--the bookstore was located at the airport. To his credit, it wasn't a true crime or a book by 'anonymous' because *that* I would have remembered. Heheh.

Terry Pratchett used to be a regular at the bookshop where I worked when I was in secondary school. He wears a big hat so as to appear like he's trying to be incognito, which of course really makes him very conspicuous and positively encourages people to peer under the brim at him all the time. And he would look at us meaningfully when he bought books, so we never gave him the satisfaction of showing that we recognised him. Petty, yet fun.

I think TP probably likes the game.

hesadevil got him to sign a book for me, so my copy of The Wee Free Men is signed 'To Bogwitch', hee!

Hahah! That's funny and awesome that you guys did that! Once, Judy Blume came in and she was such a bitch. She kept on announcing that she was "JUDY BLUME!!!" and that her book wasn't in a prominent enough place. This was one of her 'adult' books. It never sold, even in that prominant position.

"Celebrities" do their darndest to be recognized. Joshua Jackson came in a couple of times and the first time I ignored him, but he kept making eye contact and stuff. The second time he came in, I got his autograph for one of my girlfriends who had a big girl crush on him at the time. Funny thing was that he had a whole bunch of teenybopper magazines on his cart with HIM on the cover. Weirdo.

Hemel Hempstead isn't known for celeb spotting, alas. But my home town, Watford is at the hub of a load of filming, film studios and rich houses, so I used to see the odd person there. Martin Kemp (in his Spandau Ballet phase) was about the most famous. The ex saw Ozzy Osbourne once though.

Spike is 'aving a fag
Would he be channeling Waynetta Slob?

I'll try to get round to doing this meme once my parents have left, although I think I might go for authors rather than books, too. And the 2 first on your list will definitely be on my list too. Once I get round to reading actual books again, I'll give the other two a go - there is so much stuff out there, that it's hard to know where to start.

Oh, and I got my mother completely hooked on the Pern-series (she loves reading and has a thing for animals... she finds it very hard to believe that Pern isn't real - it's such a well-developed world).

Would he be channeling Waynetta Slob?

He just might be! I made my doll a ciggie as he looked a bit bereft.

They weren't the most intellectual set of influences, were they?

Pern was something I shared with my Grandmother, but I can't say I've read many books my mother has (she likes historical romances and bloody Poldark), thankfully. Pern was a marvellous world, though I do think she spoilt it a bit by introducing all the Sci Fi elements, which was fine up to the White Dragon, but started to overwhelm in the later books. And Dolphins of Pern was pants.

My mother is a voracious reader - something she passed onto me and that I've obviously passed onto my oldest... she's only 6 and she reads longish books on her own.

she spoilt it a bit by introducing all the Sci Fi elements
I know what you mean - I love 'All The Weyrs of Pern', but after that they go a bit downhill. And 'Dolphins of Pern' was most definitely pants. It does happen with her books I find... the Acorna series started out wonderfully, but some of the later ones are rather 'doing-it-by-numbers' type thing (did I get that right? Should it be 'joining-the-dots'?)
Although one of my favourite series in the Peytabee one - maybe because it's a trilogy and she hasn't added more.

I used to read tons. I suppose I still do, but it's all fic - actually that's a bit of a lie as I don't read as much of that as I used to because I feel so guilty about not getting on with the WIP that I find it hard to settle to read.

I haven't read either of those two series, though I think I have one unread one somewhere. The last ones of hers I read were the Lyons Pride ones.

and I really, really, really want to write an AU Cyberpunk Spike story.
I.Would.Read.That.With.Bells.On *g*
Nice pictures - what's the tooth for?

I would write that with bells on, but I can't seem to make it work or sound right. It needs further thought.

The tooth is a ceramic toothbrush holder. Unfortunately the design means it fills up with unpleasant gunk, so it's retired.

Hm - I've actually read none of the authors you list as influences (even Tolkien - though I had it read to me as a kid). But given how much I enjoy your writing, I probably should.

Enjoy the Dennis Wheatley occult pot-boilers, won't you! :)

I have a very Sci Fi/Fantasy taste in books, but I'd also say that TV like Catweazle, Robin of Sherwood, and old Hammer-style horror films have a lot to do with my style too, especially the WIP, which actually quite typical of the plots I like to get into, very supernatural/occult. Which is why a lot of the books on the shelves in pic two are about paganism, witches, the occult and the supernatural - it's my reference library.

And before everyone backs away slowly, I don't really believe in all that stuff, I'm just fascinated by it.

I think I just heard my list of things I should read stretch beyond its breaking point...Maybe I'll be able to start reading *books* again once the kids are out of the another 10 years.

If you start on the Anne McCaffery/Tanith Lee, you'll be plugging through for decades. I haven't even managed to read even half their stuff.

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