Famous Authors Before They Were Famous

It’s no secret that someday I want to make my living at writing. Nothing on this earth would please me more than waking up at 3AM with a great idea and being able to write it without worrying about work in the morning.

Some days it seems closer than others. It’s hard to remember that everyone had to start somewhere.

I found a great list on the blog at Publishers Weekly that helps to put things in perspective. Did you know that Douglas Adams thought of Hitchhiker while working as a security guard?

Read on to find out where some of the greats started.

Movie Monday is On Hiatus

Hey there. Hi.

This is the bit of the blog where the movie post should go. There should be some analysis right about…here…and maybe a joke or something.

But honestly? I’m not feeling it. I watched the beginnings of a handful of horror movies on the weekend, trying to find the one that would spark an idea. I never really plan the movie posts out; the theme usually jumps out and demands to be written.

I think movie reviews should be fun, both to write and to read. I can’t force the funny, and it’s not fair to either of us if I try.

Sorry about the somber post here; I just like to keep you up to date.

Are there any fantastic, cheesy movies that I can’t live without seeing? Anything you want to see here? Throw me a comment below!

My New Tattoo: Part 1

I have a new love. This is an Olivetti Studio 44, from the fifties. It types in cursive! I modified the colour to make it brighter; check out the photos at Classic Bride to see the real deal.

And no, it’s probably not the same model, but Stephen King (one of my writing heroes) says this:
“Tabby claims that I married her for a typewriter. She had a nice little Olivetti, portable typewriter, very sturdy and I wrote Carrie on it, Blaze and a bunch of other stuff as well. I guess I wrote Shawshank on that typewriter too, on a kitchen table in Boulder…” (source)

I also got another tattoo, but you’ll have to wait until I can get a better picture of it. (Ooooh, suspense!)

101 Tips for Writers

OnlineCollege.org has compiled a list of 101 Tips from the World’s Most Famous Authors. You’ll find everyone here, from Hemingway to Stephen King.

My favourite?

Dr. Seuss. Be responsible for your own success. “You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself in any direction you choose. You’re on your own. And you know what you know. You are the guy who’ll decide where to go.”

What’s yours?

An Exercise in Madness: House of Leaves

Okay, so this is a novel that I’ve been meaning to talk about. It’s one that requires its own post, and even then I’m not sure I’ll do it justice.

Ready?

The story in House of Leaves (without spoiling) goes something like this:
There’s this guy, Johnny. He’s our narrator, in a way. He finds a manuscript by a deceased old man known as Zampano. The manuscript is a book about a documentary about a family who made a documentary about their house, which is considerably bigger inside than it is outside. Oh, and it’s growing. And there are growls in the dark.

So we’re reading a book about a book about a movie about a movie. Yep.

It starts when Will Navidson, the homeowner, finds a door where there wasn’t one before. It’s inside, but on an exterior wall: so if opened, it should lead outside. Instead it opens onto a pitch-black hallway that gets longer the further you walk it.

The typesetting in the novel itself is upside down, backwards, crossed-out, different colours, encoded. The book is heavily cross-referenced to books and articles that don’t exist. It’s maddening, and fascinating, and hypnotic.

You can read it with or without Johnny, with or without solving the code. It’s several books inside one big one, and if that wasn’t layered enough, there’s an album recorded specifically to complement it.

It’s one of my favourites, by far, and up next on my re-reading list. I’ve only just begun feeling comfortable looking down dark hallways since my last read-through…it’s about time I scared the shit out of myself again.