Hawk Holland is dead—he just doesn’t know it.
At seventeen, Hawk is a professional Motocross rider. Hot, badass, smart—with a drug problem—and a death wish. Winning is what he does best. Being in the spotlight is second nature. But after his best friend dies of an overdose during a televised race, Hawk goes down a road that leads to a similar fate—and that’s just the way he wants it—or so he thought.
Fawn Marchat is a CrossWorlder. Her lineage stems from her greatest of grandmothers, the Goddess Hecate. Fawn has many gifts, including the ability to see into the Afterlife and save souls on the Crossroads of death. But between her over-bearing grandfather insisting she follow the path of her elders in Wiccan Craft and assume her birthright, her uptight private Catholic school, and her mom always on her case about the only positive diversion in her life—Fawn has no desire to save anyone but herself.
When the world of the living collides with the world of the dead, Hawk Holland realizes a choice he made while under the influence set him on the fast-track to the Crossroads, a waylay station for lost souls with a one way ticket to Hell, and Fawn is the only one who might be able to save him.
It’s been a long time since a story truly captured my imagination the way The Mortal Instruments has. This is an incredible series. If you haven’t read these books, do. This week I’m posting CITY OF GLASS, the third book in the series, all though I am actually already on the fifth book.
To save her mother’s life, Clary must travel to the City of Glass, the ancestral home of the Shadowhunters—never mind that entering the city without permission is against the Law, and breaking the Law could mean death. To make things worse, she learns that Jace does not want her there, and Simon has been thrown in prison by the Shadowhunters, who are deeply suspicious of a vampire who can withstand sunlight.
As Clary uncovers more about her family’s past, she finds an ally in mysterious Shadowhunter Sebastian. With Valentine mustering the full force of his power to destroy all Shadowhunters forever, their only chance to defeat him is to fight alongside their eternal enemies. But can Downworlders and Shadowhunters put aside their hatred to work together? While Jace realizes exactly how much he’s willing to risk for Clary, can she harness her newfound powers to help save the Glass City—whatever the cost?
Love is a mortal sin and the secrets of the past prove deadly as Clary and Jace face down Valentine in the third installment of bestselling series the Mortal Instruments.
“Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counselors, and the most patient of teachers.”
~Charles William Eliot
I received a beautiful Charles Dickens hardback for Christmas, complete with five novels. Oliver Twist, A Tale Of Two Cities, David Copperfield, A Christmas Carol (my all time favorite) and Great Expectations. The weight alone, 1483 pages, is impressive. The gilded pages and heavy dark cover indicate it’s value and overall worth in a time far past.
I also received an iPhone 4gs and with it, a storm of headaches. Half of my iTunes library, to which consists of over one thousand songs, got wiped out. Panic was quickly replaced by anger, replaced by heartbreak. My music. I can’t put into words how important it is to me. How would I replace it all? How would I even remember all of it?
An illustrated copy of Tolkien‘s The Hobbit, a hugely scaled hardback encased behind glass at a local bookstore, spoke to me. It was probably two feet in width and height, under lock and key. I wanted it the second I saw it, untouched and unowned. Books like these are treasures and meant to be treasured and adored. Now it seems they are a dying breed. I bought the book in all it’s 1977 glory.
I’m reading the fourth book in the George R. R. Martin series, A song of Fire and Ice, A Feast for Crows. I’ve been downloading them one by one onto my Nook. It occurred to me over the holidays just how upset I would be if this series, a sure to be classic in its own right, was somehow lost behind the black screen. Irretrievable. Like my music.
If I lost my novels, these treasures of mine — the thought makes me ill. I love the ease and convenience of my Nook. But what about my Dickens, my Tolkien? Is it the same if I have downloaded copies of these masterpieces?
Here’s the glitch with technology. Everything can get backed up, copied, protected. But like with my music, there are no guarantees. And even if there were, is it the same when these legendary authors are hidden behind the black screen? Not for me it isn’t. The history gets lost somewhere in the technology for me. I need the paper for these stories to remain alive and true. Weight, storage, inconvenience — all of those reasons we have to stop buying paper and start downloading — I agree with. Until we start messing with the classics. I’ll take those in all their hardback glory.
The whirlwind that the holidays become leave my head spinning and in need of normality. The trusty laptop, my Mac Pro, which I love, is my absolute savior. It’s like a loyal pet waiting at my front door as I turn the key in the lock. It shines up at me, “Where have you been?” It whirrs into beautiful illumination. The cloud lifts. My mind clears and all is right again. Ahh.
They lure me inside and force me to buy, buy, buy! Books that I should, I guess, be buying on my Nook.
Yeah, I bought one. A Nook. I failed to mention that fact about….six months ago. I broke down. Technology lulled me into its grip. Honestly, I bought one because:
1. I’m a writer and we need to stay current.
And 2. I thought for the sake of research and further education, it would serve an excellent purpose. I didn’t want to lug around a lot of books on craft and research material.
It was great at first. Then the inevitable happened. I started downloading novels. Of course I did! Do you realize the price difference? The ease of paying and BOOM, there’s your book. Waiting to be read. I love that!
But….I miss bookstores. I miss turning pages, the smell of paper, the feel of a book in my hands. I’m a reader and part of that love is meandering through bookstore isles. Browsing. Searching.
So yesterday as I continued my Christmas shopping, I found myself in Barnes and Noble. I could have only bought the two paperback books on my list, the ones for kids who don’t own ereaders. I could have gone on by only purchasing a Nook gift card for my mom, but did I?
I saw a gorgeous hardback copy of the book I intended my mom buy with that gift card on her own Nook. The soft light gleamed off the black cover, I inhaled the sweetness of paper and picked it up off the shelf. All $18.99 of it. 400 pages of…ahhhh. I had to buy it. It was calling me!
So there. My defiance toward ereaders is based on my pure love of heavily perfumed, weighted paper books. They are why I write. Why I’ve always written. Why my shelves at home are stuffed full of books I’ve read time and again. They give me a sense of pride. For myself and for every writer whose blood, sweat and tears poured into those pages.
Soon I will also join the ranks with my fellow indie, self-pubbed and trad authors with books available on every manner of ereader imaginable. But, Barnes and Noble, and all of you mom and pop bookstores and shops….you had me at hello and you’ll keep me ’til goodbye.
It was the flu. The fever crept in mid-week—after the sore throat and lack of energy sent me to bed. The fever kept me there for days.
Since my writing has been in a better place than it has in months, the timing was really bad. You see, I don’t function well when I’m ill.
The last time I was sick, really sick, was probably two years ago. Thank god for that because I kind of turn into a giant brat. I’m generally mad for the duration. And I don’t think clearly. That’s likely due to a combination of cold medicine and head congestion.
So as I’m trying to pull myself back into a productive state of mind, I’ve come up with a few motivational triggers that have helped.
Reading unlocks your brain and gets the writing current flowing again. And if you feel awful, you can read in bed.
Yeah, I know. But once your energy returns, exercise. Run, walk, whatever. It is one of the best ways to get back in the saddle.
For me this is obvious. But not for everyone. If listening to music triggers certain responses or emotions, use them. Music is great for generating ideas.
Yep. If you’re finding zero inspiration, sometimes going over your WIP with a skeptical eye is the best motivational tool.
Thankfully, my foggy head has cleared and standing for more than an hour is no longer torture. I have a lot of work to do.