Friday, 3 August 2007

Coffee Suggestion

Where is everyone?

I have a suggestion that we all take coffee on a rota of two weeks each so that the wealth of knowledge among us can be spread around. What do you think?

Now on a technical point. I know that Nichola, Cally and I have full rights on the blog but I'll be damned if I can sort out the list of racers on the side bar without redoing the whole thing. So Jude I have tried to add many times and am totally flummoxed.

My question for this week is what are you reading? Me? Well I am loving Kate H's Self Preservation Society (hard cover) and I'm also reading Rebecca by Du Maurier (paperback - beach read - am rereading it as it was used as an example in one of the sessions at the RNA conference on have to tighten plot - haven't blogged on this session yet but will on Monday or Tuesday).

Finally the wonder Maht has started a Novel Racers Facebook group for those of us who are on Facebook.

BTW way this morning is it's a straight black coffee, please.


Jen said...


I'm not a blogspot chick, sadly, so can't help you with the sidebar problem.

Hmmm... don't talk to me about reading! So far in my first week of 'writing', I've done nothing but read! Ah, well, the kids were off and the sun was shining and... Self-Preservation Society last week - loved it. Loved the framework and the way the story was structured. Last two days: In Search of Adam. Loved it too. Not sure what the neighbours made of the snotty snivelling they could hear from my side of the hedge though! Still nibbling at Jane Wenham-Jones' 'Wannabe' and my treat for this afternoon, once I've hit my word count target is Jilly Cooper's 'Wicked'. Ah, froth, sunshine and glass of seriously cold wine. Kids are away. Actually, am reading Jilly cos Jane Wenham-Jones told me to. It's research. Really! Ahem.

(Am writing, writing, writing. Am loving it.)

Extra-Strong Tetleys for me please. I'm so classy.

Cathy said...

I've recently finished 'In Search of Adam' too. What an achievement that book is. Not a comfortable read but I like gritty subject matter, both to read and write, and it has inspired me further in my own work.

Since then I have been dipping into more short stories from various collections. I never used to read stories (except in womens magazines) until I started the OU writing courses. Now I can't get enough of them and I'm constantly on the look out for collections and anthologies during my charity shop book-buying forays.

I now have a HUGE pile of books to be read, in fact the difficulty is choosing what to start next!

I'll join Liz with a black coffee please. It has been a chaotic week (school holidays always are!)

Emily Hendricks said...

I'm reading a couple books... Not Another New Year's by Christie Ridgway and All the Way Home by Wendi Corsi Staub.
The pile of "to be read" books includes the first Kinsey Millhone (Sue Grafton) mystery (the new one comes out in DECEMBER!), Pale as Blood, and one book in the genre I'm tackling - the Princess Diaries.

Lazy Perfectionista said...

I'm another black coffee girl! I'll be missing the coffee break next week, because I'm going to be on holiday. Not going anywhere exciting, just down to Sussex for a week to stay with my family, but planning to relax, read, write and enjoy the garden. After the last few weeks of madness at work I really need some time to decompress, and my writing has been woefully neglected. I'll try to remedy this, though the relaxation may prove too tempting!

NoviceNovelist said...

Morning! I've had 2 coffees already so I'm feeling chipper!!! I could squeeze in a good latte at a push though! I'm reading Therese Fowler's 'Souvenir' which I'm loving - it's so well crafted and I'm also reading 'Self Editing for Fiction Writers' by Renni Browne & Dave King. It's helping me to stay focussed as I redraft my first novel and I really like their pragmatic style - it's like having a really good writing tutor peering over my shoulder.

Emily - I love Sue Grafton and I'm looking forward to having the new one as my read on a flight to Australia for xmas - I know Kinsey will help the hours pass (that and the champagne!!!!)

Liz - good idea about taking turns to be coffee 'host'.

hesitant scribe said...

Ooh - current reading! I am reading The Paris Review Interviews Volume 1 which is marvellous. Website address is
I just finished Harry Potter last week and started Italo Calvino's If Upon a Winter's Night a Traveller Came but have got a bit bored with it I am ashamed to say. Not half as good as Invisible Cities was. James Friel recommended a novel called The Tennants which I'm trying to get hold of second hand, and apart from that, lots of books on horses - the latest being by someone called 'Pony Boy' - Horse Follow Closely - I love it! If that's not eclectic enough, just finished Richard Dawkin's The God Delusion (2nd reading and led to the Atheist post) and am dipping in and out of Unrooted Childhoods:Memoirs of Growing up Global which is one of those lovely books that makes people like me breathe a sigh of relief and feel all normal again!

Hope everyone is well and writing a darn site more than me. I think I need a break. Take the kids places for the summer and get back into it when they go back to school. Can't live with the guilt of not writing, and not spending quality time with the sprogs... argh!!!

leatherdykeuk said...

I'm still waiting for my copy of In Search of Adam. I ordered it from the publisher a month or so ago but it hasn't turned up yet. I'm a bit peeved about that, really.

The sidebar: open up the edit box and copy paste the whole lot into a textpad. Copy paste the last blogger link and change the name and URL to whoever you want to add, then copy paste the whole lot back into the edit box.

Coffee Break: I'm more than happy to host one, though Jasfoup frowns at coffee and prefers tea.

Right I have my tea. Off to add you onto my facebook profile. Same name as here, if anyone wants to add me.

Then I have to stop procrastinating and WRITE!

ChrisH said...

Thank for starting the coffee morning, Liz. Good idea to start a rota, though.

I've started my re-write this week which is new territory for me. I'm finding that I'm having to work really hard to shut out the inner critic and I'm also finding it difficult cutting out the stuff that needs to go to change the focus of the novel ... I'm having trouble killing my darlings!

Reading? Well let's hope Will Self isn't watching after his comments about adults dumbing down because this week I've just finished reading the fab new confession of Georgia Nicolson, 'Luuurve is a Many Trousered Thing' by Louise Rennison and I've just started...shh, Harry Potter.

Facebook - my daughters think it is deeply tragic when their friends parents join so I think I'll stick to blogging!

Zinnia Cyclamen said...

Two-week rota sounds like a good plan. As you've done the last two weeks, Liz, I'd be happy to volunteer for the next two if that would suit everyone. Then on the second of those weeks, someone else could volunteer for the next two, and so on until we've all taken a turn - what do you think, people?

I'm reading the new Anne Tyler, 'Digging To America' - she's one of my favourite novelists and it's excellent. Also re-reading 'Plot and Structure' by James Scott Bell, highly recommended for anyone struggling with plot stuff. I've got The Self-Preservation Society on my huge tbr pile and In Search Of Adam on order. And I couldn't get on with that Winter's Night Traveller or whatever it's called thing by Calvino either, Lisa - it was recommended in glowing terms by a friend, but I didn't finish it.

Can't help with the sidebar thingy - I got Jude onto mine OK, but I use blogrolling (it's free - - might be worth a try if blogger is being naughty).

Am steering clear of social networking sites - blogging takes up enough of my time as it is!

Oh yes, camomile tea for me, please - but after I've taken a rather taxing funeral this afternoon, it's going to be a big glass of red wine.

KeVin K. said...

Novel progress has been limited to research. (Including a letter to the Charleston, SC, police department asking about sidearms, vehicles, procedures and policies. Wonder if they'll assume I'm a nut case.) and figuring out how to weave red herrings into what is at this point a straight-forward puzzle.

Got a save-this-project distress call from a game company. There are three 3,000-word slots in an upcoming publication, could I fill them in a week? I mentioned this to Valerie as an example of things I'd have to set aside if I was to finish my novel. She didn't actually hit me upside the head with her shoe, but she did make clear that paying jobs should take precedence until such time as I can convince the grocery store to give us food in exchange for my explanation that I'm working on a novel. So the novel is on hold for a week or so.

As for what I'm reading, oddly enough a good deal of young adult fantasy. Our youngest daughter is 16 and redecorating her room. The process involves boxing up bunches of books collected over the years. And I, tasked with carrying said boxes to the charity store, have been going through them. They'll get where they're going eventually.

Sue Grafton. Fun stuff. I discovered her when she was at "L" I think and read all of her novels back to back from A-M, then I burned out. I'll wait until she's finished the alphabet and then read N-Z.

Rotating host duties sounds fine to me. I'm 5 or 6 hours behind most of you, so when it's my turn it will be a Thursday night job.

This morning it's a particularly aggressive Sumatran organic -- didn't know what I was getting into. (I like a mild coffee.)Needed to add cream and twice the sugar. Sort of a coffee icecream effect. But the caffiene's there, and the ritual. Those are what I'm really after anyway.

B.E. Sanderson said...

I'm still not writing new words over here, but I did get back to work this week by doing a synopsis--which is currently being critted--and last night I got back to editing. Yay.

I've been reading like mad lately. HP7, Angels & Demons, Ender's Game... to name a few. Right now I'm working on a mystery, so I've been into a little bit of everything.

The rotation would be fine with me. I just need someone to tell me when my weeks are and then smack me in the back of the head to remind me. (And I'd have to remember to post on Thursday night because I'm hours behind most of you. Right now it's 7:30ish in the morning here.) Just let me know. =o)

CTaylor said...

Still haven't started the editing of my novel (see "Kitchen Hell" post on my blog!) and am off to my niece's christening this weekend so HOPEFULLY I'll get started next week.

I've just finished reading the latest Harry Potter and also "Little Earthquakes" by Jennifer Weiner (both holiday reading!) and am about to start "Unless" by Carol Shields and then it's "Alias Grace" by Margaret Atwood.

Will try to sort out Jude's link on sidebar.

And yeah - I'm up for a rotation thingy. You may have to nudge me when it's my turn though because I'm likely to forget.

Oh and mine's a chilled latte. It's actually HOT in London (shock horror!)

Caroline said...

Hi all.

And huge thanks to those of you who have ordered/have read In Search of Adam. Huge huge thanks.

I am reading the new Harry Potter, Tuk Tuk to the Road by Antonia Bolingbroke-Kent and Jo Huxster, and Tell me Everything by Sarah Salway.

I have nearly finished the second draft of Black Boxes and am starting to think about agents and publishers ... but then my head starts to spin and I get stressy.


Rowan Coleman said...

Hello Everyone, glad to be back on the coffee breaks (if a bit massively late.) I like the idea of a rota, so count me in. This week I have written 9k words. Hoorah! I am waiting to read the new Pat Barker, which I can't wait to do becuase I think she is just the most wonderful writer but at the present I have too much writing to do to read anything. Both The Self Preservation Soceiety and In Search of Adam are also on my list to read when I have time, along with The Interpreation of Murder which every tells me I have to read. I setting aside a week of reading in September. It will be bliss.

ps. please excuse my lag of blogs recently. I'll get back on it soon!Rx

Helen said...

Decaff for me please as it is so late. Had a very busy day today. Who knew children's parties would involve so much work!

Went to see harry Potter at the cinema this morniing. I thought the acting and effects were good, but I couldn't help thinking about the book I'd just read and how it all ties in. Still.

Not reading anything at the moment except Good Food magazine. I have so many books but I just can't be bothered to read which is most unlike me. I practically came out the womb reading. Oh well.

JJ said...

Hi guys
Sorry I'm late (had my website brain drain class yesterday which always leaves me empty of energy).

I've just finished 'Almost French' by Sarah Turnbull, which I really enjoyed. It's interesting to hear of someone else's expat experiences, but also to find out more about our neighbours, the French! Now I'm hoping to read the new Harry Potter.


Kate.Kingsley said...

I am very literally days late for coffee this time round ~ I’ve been poorly with some bug thing, followed by a horrible trapped nerve in my back. Upside of the trapped nerve was that I got to lie stock-still on the sofa all day yesterday and read ~ almost worth the eye-watering discomfort.

Currently reading: Restless, William Boyd (loving it), Wannabe (ditto), The Finishing School, Muriel Spark (my first and most likely last Spark, I’m afraid ~ I’m persevering cos I’m waiting for that Eureka moment when I suddenly “get” it, but nothing doing so far), The Enchanted Castle, Nesbitt (comfort reading from childhood, ideal for a poorly day on the sofa) and The Craft of Novel Writing by Diane Doubtfire. I have a butterfly mind and rarely have only one or two books on the go ~ I like to alight upon whatever takes my fancy at any given time.

Also, I’m more than happy to take my turn hosting the coffee breaks, so I’ll be in touch with Zinnia about being added to the list,

Kate K

PS: I recently read “almost French” too, and thought it was great, JJ ~ reaffirmed for me that I think I would only ever be brave enough to move to another country if there was no language barrier!