Unexpected Surprise!

I have been nominated for the Liebster Award by the very generous LillianC!

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I was away on vacation with no Internet access, so I am a little late in getting back to this but here goes:

First I’m supposed to list 11 facts about myself (when looking into this award, some said you needed as few as 5):

1. I love to read.

2. I love to write.

3. I’m a people person but also need time by myself.

4. I love nature, but really don’t like biting insects even though they seem to love me!

5. I don’t drink coffee but love green tea.

6. I’m a dog and cat person and have one of each.

7. I am a recovering perfectionist but keep falling off the wagon!

8. I used to be a bookseller and as a result all of my bookshelves at home are arranged by topic and alphabetically by author.

9. I love plants and have been known to talk to them. I also listen when they talk back.

10. I like to play video games but never have enough time.

11. I find making a list of facts about myself very hard to do!

Second I need to answer Lillian’s questions:

1. What is your best holiday memory? Seeing the pure joy on my children’s faces on Christmas morning.
2. Do you like to collect a particular something? Thimbles. The collectible kind.
3. What frightens you? Lightning.
4. Which bug do you like best? Butterflies.
5. Who is the person who makes you laugh? I have a group of friends called The Fellowship, who make me laugh all of the time.
6. Where do you go when you need to get away from it all? The woods.
7. What is your guilty pleasure? Chocolate.
8. Where would your dream holiday be? Ireland.
9. What is the one talent you wish you had? I wish I could sing.
10. If you could meet three famous people, living or dead, who would you choose? Any of the great spiritual leaders of the world to see if they know what the heck is going on in this crazy world!  Any of my favorite authors like J.R.R Tolkien, Shakespeare, Neil Gaiman, Jim Butcher, Sarah Addison Allen etc. I know that’s not exactly three, but I couldn’t decide.

Third I have to nominate other bloggers who have less than 300 followers. Have fun and go explore their blogs! (Again, some of the rules say you need to nominate 11 and others as little as 5. But remember, this is a fun way to introduce new blogs, so do what you can!):

Wordwrights

Capers for Canines (and Other Animals)

Walttriznastories Blog

Fearfulfantasist

Creativityorcrazy

Red Twilight

Drybed Quips

Nicole Marica

Heron There & Everywhere

Nightwolf’s corner

The Sun Hermit

Fourth: Contact the nominees and create 11 new questions for the blogs I nominate.

Book Series

I have mixed feelings about series. It depends on which perspective I’m looking from.

As a writer if the first book in a series is really good then the author has a built-in audience waiting for the second book. And that’s great. The sale of the second book is guaranteed.

What about from the publisher’s view? They love series for the same reason. A built-in audience. Sometimes it seems that a series goes on for too long and then I feel as if the publisher was just trying to get as much money out of it as possible. I don’t blame them except when the quality of the writing is compromised for money.

As a reader, how long do I stay with a series?  What if the second book isn’t very good? Do you give the third book a try? Or what if there is a series that is really good for the first three or four but kind of loses steam after that? I feel a sense of loyalty to the author to keep going. Plus, after a few books I’m emotionally invested in the characters and the outcome of the story line. So I keep reading. Sometimes that can be a letdown if the story loses steam in the end.

Then there are the amazing series that are good all along. Like the Outlander Series

Cover of "Outlander"

Cover of Outlander

by Diana Gabaldon. My only complaint with that series is that it takes so long for her to write the books. But they have been worth the wait so far!The Harry Potter Series was consistent all along and I found it amazing how J.K. Rowling  pulled all of the details and story lines together at the end.

The reason I thought of this post is because I’m almost done with Cold Days the latest in the Dresden Files series written by Jim Butcher. This is the fourteenth book in the series (plus Side Jobs, which is a collection of short stories based on the series) and it keeps getting better with each book. On top of that, he has a fantastic fantasy series called Codex Alera. I would love to know how he writes so much, keeps it all straight and consistently good.

As a reader, I’m delighted. As a writer, I’m amazed.

How do you feel about book series?