Monday, December 21, 2009

Marathon Highlights

The pile of books on my 'have read' pile continues to build, and it seems that the 'to read' pile grows at the same pace.

Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson
Was a very good read. After seeing 'Treasure Planet', though, many things from the book surprised me. It is very different from the Disney movie. It would have been easier for me to read without all the ship lingo, but I mannaged :)

Just Ellaby Margaret Peterson Haddix
Not what I had thought. I had anticipated a sequel to 'Ella Enchanted', but this was a book all of its own. Ella is living in the castle with the Charmings, but is coming to realize that looks aren't enough for a relationship. Very much enjoyed this read, and although there were parts that were predictable, other parts were harder to figure out. (the suggested age is 11-14, but I think that may be a little young...)

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J. K. Rowling
Convinced to read this by my roommate. I enjoyed the book, it was well written and kept me guessing until the villain was revealed at the very end. Harry finds out he is a wizard, and goes to school at Hogwarts, a school for witches and wizards where he will learn how to use magic.

The Battle of the Labyrenth by Rick Riordan
Tried reading this at the same time as my sister, even though she was 100+ pages behind me. It was hard, but we eventually figured out how to have her on the left, myself on the right, and hold pages up in the middle between us...
Very well written, I love Rick's writing style, and cannot wait to get a hold of the 5th and final book of the series (that I have been told is an amazing book) and to see the movie in February.

Calamity Jack by Shannon and Dean Hale
This was an ARC, so I'm not telling you much about it... (aside from 'I loved it!') for more information, come back for the book tour on January 11-13

Chitty Chitty Bang Bang by Ian Flemming
wow. Another instance where Disney takes a book and changes everything except the name, and some character's names. For those of you who have seen the movie: there is no 'Truly Scrumptious', no foreign king, no cave of children. The mother is alive, Chitty Chitty is magical, there are gangsters, and a giant explosion. For those of you who have not seen the movie: Jeremy and Jemimah are two children whose father is an inventor. One day they go looking to buy a car, but they do not want one that is the same as all the other cars. They want to stand out. They find Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, and decide to buy her even though she will need a ton of fixing up. When the family takes a trip to the beach the adventures begin when they realize Chitty has a mind of her own and has made some... improvements to herself.

A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'engle
The children's father has been missing for quite a while, and neither them nor their mother know where he is. Two of the children and a new friend are taken on an adventure to find him, and it turns out he wasn't even on earth. They have to rescue him, battling much darkness and evil. The plot was interesting (so much so I have the second book waiting to be listened to on my iPod...) but the worldview presented confused me. At points I recognized scripture being quoted, but just a page or so later actions and mindsets conflicted with other scripture...

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Oh! I can't believe I was so wary of reading this book! So many themes and ideals are still applicable in today's society, and I cannot wait for a reread. Elizabeth detests Mr. Darcy almost as soon as she meets him because of his evident pride (and, not to mention, the nasty remark he made about her...). But has she misjudged him?

And hopefully I'll be able to read a few more before the year is over....

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Just Grace and the Snack Attack (excuses excuses)

Today is very busy. I have had one final, and have another in just a couple hours. I have to pack to go home for a month (YAY!) and do some more studying for that college writing final. I have a list of things I have to do before I'm allowed to leave my dorm (take out trash, defrost fridge (and therefore throw away orange juice :(, unplug EVERYTHING...) and I have yet to finish writing up my post of the 'Just Grace' tour. Besides, I don't have a camera here.

Yes, that is me shamelessly trying to excite your interest and cause you to want to come back later today. It involves homemade pictures.

See you then?

Visit the author's blog while you are waiting, will you?

Or the other blogs on the tour?

The Hungry Readers, Our Big Earth, All About Children’s Books, Looking Glass Reviews, Fireside Musings, Green Bean Teen Queen,, Book Crumbs, My Own Little Corner of the World, Reading is My Superpower, Never Jam Today, The 160 Acre Woods, Carrie’s YA Bookshelf, Everyday Reading, Cafe of Dreams

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Bible Blurb

Romans 8 38-39

For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

And I dub thee…


Superior Scribbler is the first award I have received, and I am quite flattered to receive this honor. And when good things are bestowed upon you, the best things to do is to share- let your cup overflow and touch others.

Here's how the award works:

• Each Superior Scribbler must in turn pass The Award on to 5 most-deserving Bloggy Friends.
• Each Superior Scribbler must link to the author & the name of the blog from whom he/she has received The Award.
• Each Superior Scribbler must display The Award on his/her blog, and link to This Post, which explains The Award.
• Each Blogger who wins The Superior Scribbler Award must visit this post and add his/her name to the Mr. Linky List. That way, we’ll be able to keep up-to-date on everyone who receives This Prestigious Honor!
• Each Superior Scribbler must post these rules on his/her blog.

( 0 ) 0 ( 0 ) 0 ( 0 ) 0 ( 0 ) 0 ( 0 ) 0 ( 0 ) 0 ( 0 ) 0 ( 0 ) 0 ( 0 ) 0 ( 0 ) 0

Therefore, I dub the Superior Scribbler Award to:

Never Jam Today

Eating A Tangerine

All About Children's Books

and My Utopia

Monday, November 30, 2009

Short Attention Span

That is what I’ve had this month. I did not finish one book in November.

No, I started eight of them.

Four fiction,

four non-fiction.

I’ve included a list for those with itching curiosity:

Started in November

The Celebration of Discipline

Seven Reasons Why You Can Trust the Bible

Eat This Book

The Path of Prayer

Treasure Island

Chitty Chitty Bang Bang

Cheaper by the Dozen

A Wrinkle in Time

And there are a couple that I want ever so desperately to read, but have to do everything in my power to keep them on the top shelf in my closet. With these eight books, Christmas looming, and finals in only a week and a half, I have enough on my plate to fill me and I don’t need to scarf down thirty books at once. Delicacies are best enjoyed one at a time.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Just Don’t Let Me Loose Near A Book Sale!

$9 Dollars gone, 16 books gained.

I went to Olivet's Professional Development Day for teacher/to-be-teachers today. I went to three sessions(4, but the one speaker never showed…), and I moseyed around at the book sale. My finds include:

Historical Atlas of the World

Oxford Pocket School Thesaurus

Presidency of the United States by David Heath

He was President when… by Jerry Alen

Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll*

The Secret of the Caves by Franklin W. Dixon

The Mystery of Cabin Island by Franklin W. Dixon

The Good Dog by Avi

The Lightning Theif by Rick Riordan+

Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson+

Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery+

Stormbreaker by Anthony Horowitz+

Monday with Mad Genius by Mary Pope Osborne

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow and Rip Van Winkle by Washington Irving

Spindle’s End by Robin McKinley

Just Ella by Margaret Peterson Haddix

+denotes a book I HAVE read

*denotes a book I resolved to read this year

Thursday, November 12, 2009

When hardbacks are $1 and paperbacks 50 cents…

I just cant help myself.

Last weekend was Homecoming, so the campus library had a huge book sale hoping the Alumni would buy some things. They also advertised the sale to current students.

At first I was disappointed because it looked like it was all non-fiction and Christian non-fiction. Don't get me wrong- I love that kind of book (In fact, I bought two of them), but thats all I had been reading lately and I was craving some fiction.

and then

They were hidden, on the last set of shelves behind a table of rock and shells and maps that were also for sale. I spent $13.50.

Snapshot of me 2

This picture is a little hard to see, but thats the quality of my laptop camera. Which I didn’t know I had until today. Anyway.

Top Left: The Saturdays; And Then There Were Five; The Five Story Mistake ; Return to Gone-Away; Teacher’s Treasury of Stories for Every Occasion (the large one); Four  of the thirteen Trixie Belden books I bought; The Hardy Boys – The Hidden Harbor Mystery; Roller Skates; Cheaper By The Dozen; The other nine Trixie Books. I also got a book called ‘The Path to Prayer’, and ‘Halley's Bible Handbook’, but neither are in this picture.

I got 23 books for $13.50. Thats the best deal I've ever gotten on books- and I have so many (pre-yellowed) treasures now!


What's the best deal you've ever gotten on books?

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Anne of Avonlea by Lucy Montgomery

I can't believe I've waited this long to read this novel! I rad Anne of Green Gables two or so years ago, but never made it to the library to borrow the other books in the series. Anne was another story I listened to on my iPod (I've been doing that a lot, haven't I?), and this was another instance I wished I could make the reader read faster.

Anne of Avonlea is about Anne growing up more from where we left of in Anne of Green Gables. In this story, she meets new neighbors, become Avonlea's school ma'am, is the secretary of Avonlea's Improvement Society, befriends people others have almost forgotten about, helps raise a set of twins, whips a boy though she thought she never would, still has as avid an imagination as ever, and gets into plenty of scrapes. She sells a cow that does not belong to her, dyes her nose red, falls through a roof, and ever so much more! Read the book to meet Davy, Dora, Mr. Harrison, Paul Irving, Miss Lavender Lewis, Leonora ( more commonly known as Charlotta the fourth), and several other characters Anne meets throughout the story as we are along for the ride while Anne goes from 16 to an 18 year-old college bound young lady.

Personally, I was quite disappointed to find that the Listening Library does not carry Anne of the Island, the next book, nor does my campus library. Therefore, to find out what happens next, I must attempt to understand how this inter-library loan system works here... and I will, because although the loose ends are tied at the end, Montgomery succeeds in sparking the imagination about what will happen in the next book... Enjoy!

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Proverbs 4: 20-23

20 My son, pay attention to what I say;
listen closely to my words.

21 Do not let them out of your sight,
keep them within your heart;

22 for they are life to those who find them
and health to a man's whole body.

23 Above all else, guard your heart,
for it is the wellspring of life.

Saturday, November 07, 2009


I ate a bag of crackerjacks the other day.

Its been a loooonnngggggg time since I've had crackerjacks. A Long Time.

But my little surprise thingy was interesting.

It has a pencil topper with red ants crawling on it. Its cute :)

But it also has some random knowledge about pencils in it, and I thought I would share. It says:
"a typical pencil can write 45,000 words or draw a line 35 miles long!"

Bettcha didn't know THAT! Hahahaha. Do you have any random knowledge you would like to share?

Friday, November 06, 2009

One Word

Using only one word, answer each of the following questions. If this sounds like fun to you, tag yourself! Have fun!

Where is your cell phone?

Your dream last night?

Favorite drink?

What room are you in?

Your hobby?

Your fear?

Where were you last night?

Something that you aren't?
illiterate ;)


Wish list item?

Last thing you did?

What are you wearing?


Your pets?
rock ;)

Your car?

Something you're not wearing?

Your favorite color?

When is the last time you cried?

Last book you read from?

Next fictional book on your list?

Plans for tomorrow?

(found on facebook, and edited)

Breaking Habits

One of my worst habits right now is Facebook. Especially Farmville. So, I decided to do something about it. I mean, intention is nothing if it is not accompanied by action, so rather than 'meaning' to spend less time on facebook and more time on more important things amounts to nothing no matter how hard I think about it until I actually take a step and DO something.

So what did I do? I forbid myself to spend any time on facebook for a week. Harsh? Nah.

I was a little surprised at how easy it was... stunned that such a strong habit wasn't harder to break... but it was quite simple, and I'm glad.

The only problem: I keep finding more to distract myself from these 'important things' even when I do not have facebook to aid in the diversion.

But I have succeeded in accomplishing quite a bit... I've written a few book reviews out, I've read almost an entire book, I've memorized more of Psalm 139, I've mannaged to keep a LITTLE more organized, I've edited a little more of my story, I've found a lot of pictures to put as my iTunes covers, I've drawn a couple pictures based of real ones... the list goes on a little more even.

My fear is that once I allow myself on facebook again, I'll go right back to indulging in it. But I think I'll be okay, I've learned my lesson. Hopefully, anyway.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

From History to Philosophy

I am excited that my History and Philosophy class has moved on from History of education to Philosophies of education. Not that I'm much of a philosophical person, I'm just not a history person. So today, I thought I would share four of the eight philosophies we have looked at so far.

*** Perennialism: this is a teacher centered philosophy created by Robert Hutchins. Perennialism is based on concepts, has little flexibility, and is based on Great Books. Not text book is used, only the books and all the lessons learned in the schools the students learn from the Great Books.

*** Progressivism: this is a student centered philosophy created by Dewy. Students in a progressive environment will learn through books as well as doing. It focuses on natural and social sciences. The students are grouped by interest and ability.

*** Pragmatism: this is also a student centered philosophy created by Dewy, it is very similar to progressivism. This philosophy focuses on developing and applying practical knowledge and skills for life, and on career/job preparation. The knowledge and skills taught here are applicable in day to day life. It involves 'hands-on' activities, and group work.

***Social reconstructivism: this is a student centered philosophy that claims the physical world is the basis of reality. It has students learn from meaningful social experiences, and focuses on social, political, and economic needs in their area and how to fix or improve them. It believes that society can and should be reconstructed through the students when they 'grow up', and that we need to instill theses problem solving skills in them now.

The next four should be coming next week... but what do you think of these four?

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

The Hidden Staircase by Carolyn Keene

Carolyn Keene's second Nancy Drew book "The Hidden Staircase" was another audio file I borrowed from my home library and listened to on my iPod. When I was younger I was more of a Trixi Beldon fan than of Nancy Drew, but I must say I enjoyed the book. I admit I figured out most things before Nancy and her friends did, however the book is aimed at a younger audience, I think.

Nancy is asked by her friend to come and solve the mystery of her relative's 'haunted house', but she decides not to because she is warned that her father is in great danger. After a close call with her father, he assures Nancy he will be alright and urges her to take the other case. Nancy is having trouble solving either case, when the hauntings get worse and her father dissappears. Will Nancy be able to figure everything out in time to save her father?

What Nancy Drew books have you read, and did you enjoy them?

Sunday, November 01, 2009

Psalm 23

The Lord is my shepherd,
I shall not want.
He makes me lie down in green pastures,
he leads me beside quiet waters,
he restores my soul.
He guides me in paths of righteousness for his name's sake.
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil, for you are with me' your rod and your staff, they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies.
You annoint my head wit oil; my cup overflows
Surely goodness and mercy will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

About Me

Today I thought I'd share some interesting things about me. Well, at least I they are interesting... Anyway, I have these lists on my facebook profile as well, and because today just called for an all-out random post, I am sharing them with you today.

write, quizzing, blog, draw, read, sit outside, think, come up with deep questions- and discuss them, waste time on the computer
green tea,green tea, a good book, catching up, soft Kleenex, 'Japanese Cherry Blossom' sent, being organized, being a bit cluttered, spring, fall, jacket weather, Psych, Bright Lights, reaching a goal, reading the Bible, finding poetic passages of scripture, hats, sisters, inside jokes, clean humor, friends, epiphanies, good quotes, defending my opinions, obeying God's nudges, paper, paper, paper, pencils, erasers, learning new things, shorthand, texting, trees, nickles, Narnia, meeting and or interviewing authors, music, iced tea, lemonade, Arnold Palmers, reading something I wrote a long time ago, that feeling when I realize I wrote the scene just right, when God gives me opportunites- and I seize them, bookshleves, new books, old books, old old old books, books with discreet Christian themes, doing quizzing, writing, eight oclock, updating things, ellipses..., talking to my cousins on the phone, acting in cousin-produced movies, watching home movies, blue, the sky, clouds, good pictures, libraies, librarians, 4th and 5th grade 'ah-ha!' moments, doing my devotions, praying for a l-o-n-g time, punctuation smiley faces ;), words, language, tea parties, good movies (I have high standards, though), modesty, young men strong in the Lord, STRAWBERRIES!!!, feeling good, realizing I cant save myself; while knowing I'm already saved, Jesus, His sacrifice, His resurrection, deep conversations, truth (telling and being told it), stone arched doorways...

Favorite Music:
Switchfood, Chris Rice, Nate Dreg, Worship Music, Regina Spector, The Call, Hymns, Instrumental, soundtracks...

Favorite TV Shows:
,Dick Van Dyke Show, I love Lucy, Psych, 18 Kids and counting...
Favorite Movies:
Lion witch and wardrobe, prince caspian, (hopefully voyage of the dawn treader), pride and prejudice (new), Nancy Drew, The Truman Show, A walk to remember...

Favorite Books:
Chronicles of Narnia, Dandelion Fire, Masterpiece, Point Blank, Spiderwick Chronicles, Tuck Everlasting, Eat This Book, The Deadliest Monster, Savvy, Ella Enchanted, Mara Daughter of the Nile, A Curse Dark as Gold, Wildwood Dancing, Anne of Avonlea and more....

Favorite Quotations:
"walk softly and carry a big stick"-Teddy Roosevelt

"we read to know we are not alone"-C.S.Lewis

"strengthen the feeble hands, steady the knees that give way; say tot he fearful hearts, 'be strong, do not fear; your God will come, he will come with vengeance, with divine retribution he will come to save you."- Isaiah 35: 3-4

"For God will bring every deed to judgment, including every hidden thing, whether is is good or evil."- Ecclesiastes 12:14

"we tend to forget how very different a thing Christianity is- how decisively and uncomfortably different."- Kilpatrick

"our only hope is to recognize the depths of our sinfulness and cry out... [to] God... we must... depend on God, expecting Him to rescue us. " Baldwin

"you can't argue a person into the kingdom of heaven." - Baldwin

"we can no more separate religion from the state than we can separate people from their thoughs. No one is neutral..." - Baldwin

"To dismiss the supernatural because you've never seen it is as analogous (the same as) to the color-blind man dismissing the color red because he's never seen it." - Baldwin

About Me:
I love to read, (fiction and non fiction)
I like tea,
I have a birthmark,
learning is exciting to me,
I have a blog,
I love Jesus,
I enjoy drawing,
I write a lot of fiction,
I can be excited about almost any day as soon as I remember God created it,
I wear a promise ring,
I love to smile,
I can be opinionated,
I miss my family...,
I am majoring in Elemenaty Education,
I prefer modesty,
I don't try to mean, it just comes out that way sometimes...
I have a list of goals,
I obsess about things,
I will always be a quizzer at heart
I don't like being touched at all
I don't like hugs
I'm pretty weird, but who isn't?
~~ the end~~

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Girl in the Arena~ Tour

Notes and Quotes:

"weapons were modified so no one would get seriously injured, but it's possible this concept put him [the creator of GLAD sport] in league with the scientists who worked on atomic energy and didn't foresee Hiroshima, Mon Amour."

"Eventually Glad sport, though not always a fight to the death, certainly offered this possibility."

-Lise doesn't use quotation marks, she uses new paragraphs and dashes... its hard to read at first... I think it feels more like I'm reading, and less like I'm living it.

-Although Lyn is the daughter of a gladiator, and stepdaughter of six others, she has decided she wants to be a pacifist...

-upon my reread, I realized how much foreshadowing there is...

haha, I just have to share this quote "cleaning up soap is not an easy task because it keeps trying to clan the thing you're trying to clean. "

-Lyn's mom, Alice, expects her to go to Gladiator Wives College and marry a Gladiator, but Lyn doesn't want to do this...

-Lyn seems to be as much of a mother figure as Alice. Alice is losing it, and Lyn has to take more responsibility. Lyn seems to take care of everyone because Alice can't handle it any more.

-Lyn's favorite father is Tommy, her current one. He takes an interest, tries to befriend her, acts most like a father than any of the others.

-I think its kinda weird that Thad's medication gives him the ability to 'prophecy'...

-By the end of the third chapter Lyn talks a lot about ritual. She goes through her life and everything is how it normally is, everything that has happened is normal, expected. She can, at this point, predict what will happen next. It wont last long...

-Lise has a wonderful way of describing things perfectly "He's [Thad's] fast asleep, bathed in anime colors streaming from the silenced TV."

-I don't like how the cover is so inaccurate. If there is a picture on the cover, I expect to see that somewhere in the book... The hair is wrong, and so is the outfit...

Here is part of the review provided on the back of the book:

"Lyn is a neo-gladiator's daughter through and through. Her mother has mad a career out of marrying into the high-profile world of televised blood sport, and the rules of the Gladiator Sports Association are second nature to their family: "Always lend ineffable confidence to the gladiator, Remind him constantly of his victories." and most importantly: "Never leave the stadium when your father is dying." The rules help the family survive, but rules- and the GSA- can also work against you. When a gifted young fighter kills Lyn's seventh father, she also captures Lyn's dowry bracelet, which means she must marry him. To win her freedom, Lyn will enter the arena to face her father's murderer in mortal combat. And she'll do it even though she may be falling for him..."

Other bloggers on this tour:

Abby the Librarian, A Patchwork of Books, All About Children’s Books, Becky’s Book Reviews, Fireside Musings, Homeschool Book Buzz,, Maw Books Blog, My Own Little Corner of the World, Reading is My Superpower, Through a Child’s Eyes

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Girl in the Arena~ Tour

Thanks to Bloomsbury USA for generously providing me with an ARC of 'Girl in the Arena' by Lise Haines.

I have mixed feelings about this book. Its kinda gory in some parts, and I'm not good with gore. Not a fan at all... It seemed very dramatic at other parts, as if some things didn't really need to happen the way they did... like some things took a turn for the worst and everything went downhill from there. Its a sobering book; sad, bad, and tragic things happen and the characters have to deal with their situation as best they can. Things happen that shouldn't happen, just like in life, and although it may not have the ending I'd hoped for, its a good one.

But its growing on me.

I'm still not a huge fan, but its growing on me. I keep thinking about it, and pondering it, and reliving different scenes like when Uber visits Lyn for the first time, and when Thad goes to the museum with Lyn, and when Lyn spars against Mark... I've already begun my re-read. Tomorrow I'll post some of the comments I've written on the first fifty pages or so.
Late tomorrow....

would do it today, as well as include the synopsis provided, but I don't have my copy of the book... I'm on fall break, and I'd forgotten when the tour was, and I left my copy on my desk in my dorm. I don't know when for sure I'll be able to post with the book in hand, but it WILL happen tomorrow... it just might be kinda close to Wednesday ;)

Anyway, there is still more in store for you today, the author was kind enough to do an e-mail interview with me:

Interview between Lise and Marie:

Lise: Hi Marie. Thanks for including me on your cool site!

Marie: How long did it take you to write 'Girl in the Arena' from the first glimmer of an idea to the last draft?

Lise: Maybe I had the first inkling three or four years ago. But most of it was written over a couple of years while I taught full-time and was busy raising my teenage daughter. It felt like a particularly intense process since I sold my novel when it was less than half finished.

Marie: Are any of the characters in your book based off people you know?

Lise: Maybe bits and pieces but not whole characters. Though I certainly feel I know them the way one knows close friends or family. Like a lot of writers, part of the process for me is about tapping into vivid daydreaming—which is a lot like hanging out with people I’m tight with.

Marie: Do you listen to music as you write? Why or why not?

Lise: I certainly have in the past but not so much with this book. I haven’t had a lot of time to do the download thing. And then the idea of starting with a blank IPod or an empty CD cabinet becomes pretty daunting.

Marie: Where did you get your inspiration for ‘Girl in the Arena'?

Lise: I think I have at least three different answers to this question, and they’re all right in a way. Some of it was about working with my college students—thinking about the way they handle violent info and things they’re fascinated by. Some of it was about my daughter introducing me to virtual reality, manga, anime, etc. And some of it was about reflecting on the events of the last few years like 9/11 and Iraq. I’ve written a blog about the number of young women going off to war on my website. You can also find some of my daughter’s avatars there as well:

Marie: How did you come up with the names for the characters?

Lise: One of my best friends is named Lyn. I think of my friend as a rather heroic person. Very genuine and real—someone I can tell anything to--but she sets the mark high. You probably already know that Uber comes from a German word meaning excess or superiority. It’s become so overused it’s almost lost its meaning, and seemed kind of funny to me: uber this and uber that. I think of my character Uber as someone who’s trying to find meaning in his life. Thad just sounded right on the tongue. There’s something very sweet about Thad and quite unique so he had to have a particular name.

Marie: What is the first thing you do when you get a new story idea?

Lise: I rarely start with an idea. I get an image, a voice, a line. Then I just start writing and see where it takes me.

Marie: Time and money aside, what would you rather be doing?

Lise: I hope I always get to write. It really is an essential part of me. I’ve been writing forever. And I love teaching though like most dedicated teachers, I wouldn’t mind a sabbatical now and then. I love hanging out with my daughter—always--as in: let’s go shopping, though we also go for walks, check out museums, hit movies. I’ve worked incredibly hard the last few years to support us and I think more than anything I’d like to take a whole month off. Loll around at the beach, go to the gym, hit the movies, put my feet up, and read great books. And sleep. I’d really love to get some sleep.

Marie: What obstacles would you warn beginning authors of?

Lise: One of the primary things an author has to come to grips with is: who holds the emotion in a work of fiction—the author or your reader. If you dump your emotions onto the page, the author holds the emotional content—and the reader observes things from a distance. If you show some restraint and simply convey very specific, concrete details and show us what happened, the reader feels the emotion in an almost effortless, and deeply satisfying way.

Marie: If you were stranded on a desert island, what three things would you bring with you, and why?

Lise: I assume you don’t mean people, so I’ll focus on objects. I know my survivalist nature would kick into gear big time. First, I’d want a good knife. With that I could do a thousand things including writing on bark. A magnifying glass to start a fire. And maybe a copy of Alice in Wonderland or…a needle. I could make clothes with a needle, I could fall down a tree with Alice. Hmm. Alice, needle, Alice, needle… (It’s one of my favorite books.)

Marie: What question have I not asked that I should, and what is the answer?

Lise: Ha. Okay. Maybe you’ve heard that I have a strong intuitive nature. Let’s see, you were thinking of asking something about what we could all use more of, so cautionary tales like Girl in the Arena never become a reality. And I would probably answer: compassion. It’s something all young writers need in abundance, to really get inside another life and report back to the rest of us.

I’m so grateful that you included me and Girl in the Arena on your site. I wish you lots of good energy in the coming year. I’ll enjoy following Fireside Musings.

Marie: Thank you, Lise, for the interview, and the wonderful answers!

Follow the links below, they are also hosting this tour and have all kinds of information for you!

The 160 Acre Woods, A Patchwork of Books, All About Children’s Books, Becky’s Book Reviews, Fireside Musings, Homeschool Book Buzz,, Maw Books Blog, My Own Little Corner of the World, Reading is My Superpower, Through a Child’s Eyes