All posts tagged: 2015

NaNoWriMo

In my circle of friends and among my colleagues, nobody knows what NaNoWriMo is, not even when I tell them that it is National Novel Writing Month. A few answered with a disinterested, ‘Huh?’ They probably think that it is the same kind of thing as National Carrot Cake Day (2/3), International Kissing Day (7/6) or National Bologna Day (10/24), but it’s not! NaNoWriMo is in a whole other league! In addition, it’s an entire month. Really, I have no right to feel so strongly about NaNoWriMo. I only discovered it last year and only achieved a word count of around 4,600 words. Not exactly impressive. I am however starting over this year. I have a brand new idea – or rather, I don’t have an idea, I just starting writing, but I like where it is going so far. It’s Day 1 and I have 1700 words. To my fellow NaNoWriMo writers: Believe! Not only can we rack up the word count, we can also write something outstanding and original.

Copenhagen Shooting

Last night – Valentine’s Day – I left home around 4:30 PM to have dinner with a friend in Copenhagen. We had a lovely dinner, took a long walk in the inner city, before having cocktails at Ruby. We walked together down Købmagergade, past Krystalgade around 11:45 to the train station Nørreport where I took the train home at 00:04 AM. It was a wonderful evening in great company – an evening of smiles, great conversation, and gourmet experiences, but this morning, I was completely shaken to hear how the night also had been. At 3:30 PM, there were reports of a shooting with an automatic weapon at a debate concerning freedom of speech with the attendance of the Swedish cartoonist Lars Vilks. One civilian was killed and three police officers were wounded. At 00:45 AM, shots were fired at the synagogue in Krystalgade – where I had passed by just an hour before. One civilian was killed and two police officers were wounded. The manhunt for the perpetrator continued through the night, until he …

To review or not to review…

Almost all of the book blogs that I have seen, review books in one way or another, and most of them write a review and grade the book with hearts, stars, thumbs up, or cute personalized icons that I don’t have the technical expertise to make. I resent that! I resent the way, we as readers try to sum up an entire novel – perhaps years of work – to “good” “great” or the like. It is like Caesar’s ruling of thumbs up or down, after a gladiator has fought for survival against three barbarians, two Spartans, and one lion, imported especially for the purpose. At the same time, it is final in the same way as answering “fine” to the question of “how are you” – a non-answer silencing the person posing the question. In my opinion it shows that we are unwilling to commit, unwilling to jump off the fence, and unwilling to let our opinion be known. If you like a book, then tell us why you like it. If you dislike a …

A Piece of Turkey

I was on vacation in the coastal town of Ҫeșme in the westernmost region of Turkey. It is a pleasant town, cooled by the breeze from the Aegean, rich in history and hospitality, and in my mind connected to the sweet taste of sugared, apple tea and newly harvested melons. One day I went to the city of Izmir, probably better known in Western classical literature as Smyrna. However, the difference between the beachside Ҫeșme with the sound of water ever-present and hustle and bustle of the third largest city in Turkey was astounding. Where Ҫeșme was blue skies, blue water, and the gentle breeze, Izmir was stone, blinding white in the sun and the dust of a metropolis. I could feel the dry heat in the back of my mouth and sought shade in the narrow straits and alleys, lined with shops. There were so many people, meandering through the streets; it was claustrophobic and exotic at the same time. At last, I found the bazaar, built in sandstone, away from the blasting heat. …

The Reading Group – Elizabeth Noble

I have taken several stabs at this blog entry without a viable result, probably because I have tried to start on a positive note about book clubs and work my way into the novel, but there is an elephant in the library. I love the premise of a novel centered around a book club as “The Reading Group” is, but the (i.e. my) trouble is the gallery of characters in the novel. For approximately half the novel, I was still reminding myself, who was married to who, who had the adulterous husband, whose boy had an accident, and who was a GP. Five women are in the reading group; all of them have one or more men in their lives; all but one have 1-3 named children, two have mothers that also play a role in the novel. There are many characters; the list of characters in front helps, although in my opinion it should not be necessary. I understand the monstrous task Elizabeth Noble has given herself: write a novel with five main characters …

Out of Hibernation

In the virtual world of today, there are numerous opportunities to share reading experiences. Blogs, Goodreads, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Homepages, reviews of Amazon or pretty much any other bookseller, so what makes Louise’s Home Library different? I began Louise’s Home Library in July 2012, revamping it in January 2013, but for the entirety of 2014, the blog was dormant. The short version is I was caught up in my everyday life; I did not even read for the majority of that year. However now I’m back! There are many wonderful book blogs out here and many superior writers compared to me, so back to my initial question: what makes Louise’s Home Library different? My home library is my sanctuary of books, a place of escape, learning, entertainment, and contemplation. It is also my cave, a truly safe refuge, where the daily humdrum is stilled for a series of sweet moments. Whether an entire room has been devoted to my books or just a couple of bookcases and shelves here and there and a good reading …