BOOKISH FRIENDS: This is the author — Matt Haig — that wrote the great article I shared about hope on Facebook a couple of weeks ago, and his book did not disappoint! FANTASTIC STORY and really well written. It’s about a man who ages more slowly than most humans and he learns some beautiful lessons along the way. Poignant and entertaining, tender and haunting (not in a scary way but in a reflective way!). Ben listened to a bit with me and he liked it too.
I’ll be reading ALL of this author’s books in the near future…
I had signed up for NetGalley years ago, but had never pursued receiving a FREE Advanced Reader Copy (known as an ARC) of a book because…life…but as I was browsing book reviews on Goodreads, I noticed several great books had been reviewed by ARC readers and I wanted IN on the latest and greatest — and to follow my favorite authors. Here’s how I got my first ARC books to read from NetGalley:
Fill out your profile AS COMPLETELY AS POSSIBLE! This helps publishers confidently approve you to review their ARCs. Registration does ask for a business name, but you can be an Amazon or Goodreads consumer book reviewer.
Choose the categories you are most interested in reading about — I selected nearly EVERY category and there were plenty of books to choose from!
Connect your social media accounts: Goodreads, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
Browse the books available and select whichever ones interest you. To increase your chances of receiving an ARC, you may want to choose lesser known authors or niche-markets such as cooking, biography, or knitting — whatever appeals to you!
I received 2 of my first 4 ARC requests within the first 24 hours!
You can even request audiobooks IF you request them through netgalley.com on a browser THEN listen to them in their mobile app – easy!
I ran across a few interesting books today about art, women, history, and blooming later in life. I found them both inspirational for similar reasons. Lisa Congdon, an artist who began later in life herself, authored this book on “older women leading extraordinary lives.” It’s inspiring, indeed. In “A Glorious Freedom” Congdon writes about women from all walks of life including Betty Reid Soskin who, at 95, worked as the oldest national park ranger! She says, “My first eight decades were spent collecting dots, and now I’m connecting dots.” It’s a quick, inspirational read.
Contents include brief biographies of late bloomers such as a Cheryl Strayed, Laura Ingalls Wilder, Grandma Moses, and Sister Madonna Buber — examples spanning the ages.
The second book was all about overlooked or relatively unknown female artists spanning hundreds of years. This book was a bit edgier with a more feminist bent but it certainly was educational! I was thrilled to learn about Louise Bourgeois, whose mesmerizing spider sculpture is replicated at Bentonville’s Crystal Bridges’ entrance. Other featured artists include Adelaide Labille-Guiard, Lee Krasner, and Kara Walker, an amazing artist known for her “candid investigation of race, gender, sexuality, and violence through silhouetted figures that have appeared in numerous exhibitions worldwide” according to her website at karawalkerstudio.com.
For a more comprehensive look at those late bloomers who stand out in a culture that adores youth, check out Late Bloomers by Rich Karlgaard. Read more about each book at their Amazon links, or find them on Libby from your local library. Worth the read!
Here is a book cover I did a few years ago (and finally read when I got asked to teach Old Testament to the high school sophomores this year). I highly recommend the book for anyone who teaches youth and especially love the bright green cover.
Hmph. I know that title should be italicized but I can’t find in my WordPress where it will allow you make it italic (there’s no place for HTML encoding or formatting of any kind). Oh well. Please forgive me, dear readers who might possibly care (cough, cough). I know I’m the only one who probably cares about such things considering I is (sic) an English major and all.
So I’ve decided to go back through some old work and post it on here so this blog can include more of the graphic design I’ve done over the years. Someday I’ll get that professional site up, but blogging is way more fun. Here’s a cover I did a year or two ago for Jack Weyland’s book entitled Cameron Meets Madison. The publisher had strict instructions to make it similar to his other bestselling works but I wanted it to look a bit fresher and I think it hits the mark. I have not read it — yet — but if you have, let me know your thoughts either here or on goodreads.
I picked up a new client from California and was asked to help out on the interior and the cover. They pretty much had everything already how they wanted it, they just needed someone to professionally lay it out in the correct software. It was a fun (if long!) job and it seems I made a new friend along the way. I love when I have nice clients who respect my time and efforts. It makes for a win/win all the way around. Now, back to unpacking boxes for a few more days — all in an effort to avoid the boys’ clothes closet, I can assure you.
I haven’t worked on a book cover for a little while and I’m really enjoying working again. Good thing since I’ve been burned out for nearly a decade. Just kidding – it just has felt like that with four kids and fourteen years. Since my kids are aged 4 to 14 I guess I did have one full decade there, didn’t I?! Well, back to some creative endeavors. This book cover has only been in the works for almost a year… I finally read the book and it’s a fantastic, quick read.
I get to do a quick and fun book cover for Brenda Craner Benedict. She did the cute dandelion illustration on the cover (as well as writing the book!). My job can be so much fun sometimes. Plus, I get to meet great people.
Never been done before. Stephenie Meyer takes the top 4 slots of the Top 100 Books of 2008 from the USA Today’s best selling books list (photo courtesy of USA Today). You can check out the article here. Personally, I’ll admit that I started reading them skeptically – I was pretty darn sure I would hate the books. I mean, come on, vampires?! As I turned each page, though, I kept annoying my hubby by saying, “Wow. This is really good stuff.” I couldn’t believe how much I liked the books! They’re not really good vs. evil books. More about free agency and choice. Loved them. Even hubby has read them and likes them as much as Harry Potter. Surprise! Other books on the list that I have read this year: Wrobleski’s “Edgar Sawtelle” and Grogan’s “Marley & Me” — both great. Now, off to read some of the REST of the top 100 books…I’m sure some of those are even better…without the teenage groupies.
I am loving this Christmas break. Lots of staying up late playing games and then sleeping in and staying in bed and reading. There is nothing better than reading for an hour after you wake up but before the day really begins. Normally, I would read scriptures and then hurry off to start the day but this Christmas break, Don and I have been waking up late and catching up on our fiction piles — such a nice treat. I am thoroughly enjoying the 2000 edition of the Best American Short Stories edited by E.L. Doctorow and Katrina Kenison. My favorites so far are a Utah author Ron Carlson’s “The Ordinary Son” as well as Amy Bloom’s “The Story” and Percival Everett’s “The Fix”. You can see more reviews at Goodreads . I do think it’s ironic Don is reading Twilight and going to donate blood to the Red Cross on his birthday. Makes me chuckle. He says he’s going to take it to read “in the chair” on-site. He’s closer to 50 than 30 today but I can guarantee you he doesn’t act like it. He will always be a boy at heart and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Photos attributed to: Big Stock Photo (see right hand column for links and info).
I designed both of these mockups for a client recently. We were feeling green. So — which cover do you think my client chose? The one with the girl or the one with the leaf? Vote for your favorite by leaving a comment and then we’ll compare those results with the one my client actually chose! Could be interesting…