Summer Reading – Water for Elephants

So the internet tells me that November 1st is the release date of Water for Elephants on DVD.

Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen

The things I learned from Sara Gruen –

1. It is possible to write in a man’s voice even though you’re a woman. At least she convinced me and since I’m a girl that might be easier than if I were a guy… but I don’t know. Jacob Jankowski has a wonderfully developed tone. I enjoyed it immensely. In the reverse it made me think of this scene from As Good As It Gets

2. NaNoWriMo is sort of a legit thing – National Novel Writing Month takes place every November. This blogger writes that at least part of Water for Elephants was written during NaNoWriMo though much research was done beforehand and the novel itself took a bit longer than just the month of November to reach completion. However, when investigating the claims that Gruen wrote it during NaNoWriMo she came across this list of works published after NaNoWriMo. Okay, I promise to stop typing that.It’s getting on my nerves, too.

3. Research is a really important thing. Most of the events of her story were taken from actual circus history. Which, let’s face it, is rife with bizarre, secretive stories. One of my major complaints with a popular teen lit series that shall remain nameless is that the research was limited to google and based upon very silly ideas. Gruen actually came down to the Ringling Museum here in Florida to discover more about her topic AND invested in a ton of books as well.

Now I’ve recently come to terms with the fact that I need to actually make effort in the arena of getting published. It’s possible National Novel Writing Month might be a bit of a kickstart for me. We shall see.

Happy Wednesday!


let’s talk about…

…why Markus Zusak is awesome. But first, this:

Markus Zusak reading The Book Thief

1. He’s a published author – this doesn’t make every published author awesome, but it wasn’t the obvious first choice so I went for it.

2. He’s Australian – which most people would have listed first, but we’re all about the unexpected surprises here at anecdotalmusings. Also, I’ll point out to you something the host pointed out about 8 times last night: Markus Zusak is a “bit of Australian Eye-Candy”. This moniker did well with the audience. Jen and I realized at this point that the majority of the audience was probably crossover from the “Twi-mom” phenomenon. We actually watched one of the moms get all touchy with Mr. Zusak which made us both quite uncomfortable. Continue reading “let’s talk about…”


the beautiful and damend by f. scott fitzgerald

I consider myself a self-motivated person. But apparently I’ve found my limits when it comes to Modern American Literature. Or maybe it’s just Classic Literature in general. I honestly haven’t read enough Classic Literature outside of an academic setting to know if I enjoy it or not.

This summer I made an attempt to remedy that. I picked up The Beautiful and Damned and For Whom the Bell Tolls in effort to better acquaint myself with these bastions of American Literature. I didn’t even crack the cover of FWtBT (unfortunately). And I made several attempts to march through TBaD. 

I mentioned in my review of Rules of Civility that RoC was everything I wanted The Beautiful and Damned to be: New York looking glamorous and some devil-may-care main characters that undergo some essential maturity and growth. Continue reading “self-motivated?”