Victorian Christmas Schmoop

Today is historical day on the Torquere Press blog, so I’ve posted a Christmas story starring Nick and Davy, heroes of my Victorian-era murder mystery “Suffer the Little Children” which will be out at the end of January.  Go read The First Nowell, and happy Yule to you all.


Enough with the ebooks are evil crap, k?

Image by dargie via Flickr

Okay, let me be blunt here: I’m tired of this either/or BS about ebooks.  Like, if you have an ebook reader you obviously HATE print books and vice versa. I love both.  I love it that I can buy more books for my Kindle because 1) they’re cheaper than print and 2) They don’t take up as much space. But the books I love, I keep in hard copy.  I also don’t use the Kindle for things like art books, most cookbooks, anything with a strong visual component.

Research can be easier with a Kindle if you’re dealing with something that doesn’t have a proper index, or isn’t well indexed (Oh yes, how many times have you been told that the information you want is on page 231, and you read the freakin’ page at least six times before you realize that it’s totally not on page 231?) You can annotate your ebooks without ruining the page, and make long notes.  No, it’s true, it doesn’t smell like an old book (A scent which apparently inspires near-orgasmic rapture in the anti ebook crowd to hear them cite it over and over.) but a Kindle won’t have book fleas either. The pages won’t fall out of a much-read ebook, and have to be held in place with a rubber band. Oh yes, I know people who would tell you that’s part of the whole book experience, and I get that, but sometimes it’s not about the romance of books, but actually about being able to read them,  yknow?

The sister of a friend got all snippy with me last Christmas about ebooks talking about how they were fine but she truly loved books and couldn’t ever imagine having an ebook reader.  I said to her: Which do you like better, books or reading them?  She said: Oh shut up.? I love books.  I make them, for heaven’s sake, why wouldn’t I love them?  But I love reading and I’m practical.  I don’t steal books so I have to find some way to reduce the costs of reading.

You can love either one or you can love both and I don’t really give a damn where you come down on that spectrum, but it’s time people stopped pretending that there’s something superior about either format or either type of reader. Because fighting about it takes up reading time.

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December again… already?

Mom and snow
Image by dargie via Flickr

Our first snowfall of the season arrived on December first showing, I think, an admirable tidiness of  planning.  I freely confess that I love snow and cold weather.  I love autumn and winter.  Though I often feel guilty saying so in front of anyone because it’s inevitable that someone will grumble at me about how much they hate it and how miserable winter really is and I’d understand if I had to commute in the cold and snow.  But see, the thing is that even when I did have to commute in miserable weather I loved it.

My mother, who hated being cold, always got excited by the first snow of winter.  She’d throw on her coat and boot and run out to enjoy it.  So when she couldn’t do that anymore, I’d go and scoop up a bowl of snow and bring it in for her to play with.  The photo at the left is her building a snowman in our kitchen.

I’ll never stop loving the winter.  I will probably just stop saying  I love it to save everyone the annoyance. At least I’m not alone.

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