"Never knowingly be serious. Rule 27.” — Doctor Who
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August 23, 2022

Possible matters to overthink

computer with books, coffee cup
Excuse the madness, I may have been a little overwhelmed or didn't get enough sleep. I wouldn't say these are very opinionated opinions but I guess they are.

01 - Wordpress only? I decided I won't open a wordpress account just to post comments on wordpress blogs that only allow wordpress users & social media (twitter and facebook). So perhaps that's a bad idea and perhaps I'm being bias. But if a wordpress blogger only wants wordpress (and social media) users to comment on their blog, aren't they being biased against readers like me who does not use wordpress or social media?
    So yes, it's pretty easy to open a wordpress account and signing in is not a complicated task but why should I have to sign up/sign in to leave comments on any blogs? I think it would be nice if everyone just uses the name/blog link (url) option but Blogger probably won't switch to that so I'll never have that option but wordpress users have that option right? I'm not a wordpress user but I would assume they have the option to allow all kind of readers to leave comments and not just wordpress & social media users.

02 - Nobody uses Blogger? — There is a blogger who said in a post, 'nobody really uses Blogger as a blogging platform anymore' and that new bloggers would go straight to free Wordpress. (This person uses Wordpress). This makes me kind of sad and a little angry (okay, more angry than sad) because I'm using Blogger and I don't think that's true. How does this person know if new bloggers would go to Wordpress and not to Blogger? How does person know if people are not using Blogger? Where did they get their information from?
    So yes, people can have their opinions but this didn't sound like an opinion, this sounds like they are stating a fact. And by saying that, they are telling people to use Wordpress, right? I mean, if I'm a new blogger and see this comment, I would think I should use Wordpress instead of Blogger. So I'm bias so you can't trust me if I recommend Blogger to you instead of Wordpress. But trust me when I say people are using Blogger even if no one believes it.

What do you think? Should bloggers pick their readers? Are people using Blogger? Does any of these things matter?

August 19, 2022

Fiction: The Introvert Assassin

typewriter, cup, short fiction text

This August Words for Wednesday prompts are provided by Elephant's Child over here. This week's prompts are some typically Australian phrases/slang.
1. Pull the wool over his eyes; 2. Put a sock in it; 3. Dog's breakfast; 4. Gone walkabout; 5. Six of one, half a dozen of the other; 6. Tell him he's dreaming. Half of these I had to look up but still only end up using two of them - Put a sock in it and Tell him he's dreaming but slightly different.

Fiction: The Introvert Assassin

Six Turner have no patience for talking to people. Sometimes, her eyes veer off to the ground or elsewhere when people talks to her. Some might call her an introvert but she just doesn't like talking to people who have nothing important to say. 
    At times, Six is considered an easy person. Anyone can pull the wool over her eyes or so they believe. As far as she is concerned, her neighbors are not good conversationalists no matter how interesting their secrets are. And they would tell her things even if she declines to listen. Perhaps they believe she can keep her mouth shut, quiet as she is. There are things she would have not liked to know such as her neighbor Mrs. Watchman's secret desire to be an insurance salesperson but she doesn't dare because her husband believes a woman's place is in the home or that her other neighbor, Mr. Bert, dances ballet on the weekend even though he looks like a 'bag of potatoes' which is his own words nor the neighbor facing her house secretly pines for Mrs. Watchman even though he's married. No, it's no fun for Six to talk to people. They usually think she is supposed to be the listener and they, the talker.
    At 64, Six is tired of people altogether. Her last decent conversation was with her husband some thirty years ago. He was half drunk and half mad at the time but at least, he had interesting things to say while he was beating her. But then he keeled over and died of a heart attack from the arsenic she put in his wine. Of course, she have told no one of this because all the things she would like to share about her life is no longer interesting to her. And she cares not one wit about other people's opinion of her - she had enough of that during her thirty-year career. No, she would rather read a book than to have a conversation with another human being.

August 16, 2022

Types of readers I might be

top ten tuesday

This week's Top Ten Tuesday is Books I Love That Were Written Over Ten Years Ago but I decided not to use it. Usually, I do not know when a book is published nor do I care to find out unless it's something I need to know and most of the time, I don't. So I'm listing types of reader I might be. Oftentimes, I can and will change my mind about a book and maybe these all sound a bit similar but it seems to describe me, for today anyway. For more Top Ten Tuesday, visit That Artsy Reader Girl here.

01 - Random Reader
— I read anything as long as it's a book or so I think sometimes. Generally, I do not have any specific reasons for reading a book. Sometimes I do not read the synopsis or reviews or know anything about a book before I start reading other than I find the covering interesting or I am able to get my hands on it, ie, a library loan or a low-price book or a free book.

02 - Specific Genre Reader — When I said genre, I really meant, a variety of similar books which can be a certain genre or just a bunch of books with similar themes or even exact storylines but written differently. So I sometimes would read similar books in a short period of time. (Most of time I don't know what genre a book is placed under anyway.)

03 - Sudden Interest Reader — Even if I heard about a book for a hundred times and never had any desire to read it for those hundred times, that would suddenly change for silly reasons like a good book cover or something just click in my head and I had to read that book. So I would call these 'sudden interest' because I don't know if I even have a good reason for wanting to read a book.

04 - Review Reader — Often I read a tons of reviews before deciding to read a book and they do influence me. I think the ones that compare a book to another book is the most influential. It's why I think people should stop comparing books to other books because it's never like those books and also because, there are books that I can't stand and if you mention a book is like this or that book that I can't stand, I am most likely not to read them.

05 - Non-Horror Reader — I don't read horror as I'm a scaredy cat and I wouldn't get any sleep if I did but I'm okay with spooky or slightly creepy books. But sometimes it's not so much as something is scary but more like I get grossed out so easily and most horror features a lot of grossed out things that I simply cannot stomach.

06 - Persuasive Reader — So it's not necessary reviews that make me read a book or not but things such as movie adaptation, a blog post (not a review) gushing about a book, someone mentioning the book having relations with something, etc. I'm not saying I'm easily influence but some people and things can be very persuasive and maybe my state of mind sometimes can be an influence as well.

07 - Re-Read Reader — I like to re-read my favorite books now and then. There is a joy in knowing how the story ends or reliving some moments that just appeals to me. I guess we are generally nostalgic about things so re-reading is nostalgic. When I don't like what I'm currently reading, I would re-read some of my favorites.

08-10 - Moody Reader I listed this from 8 through 10 because this defines my reading habits for most days. Being moody means I never know what I might want to read. I think it's easier to enjoy reading if you don't make goals like what books to read at what specific times or finishing a book on a specific day, whatever suits you at whatever moment is what you read, that's what I do most of the time. (I might also call this Picky Reader since I can be very picky when I'm in a bad mood.)

What type of reader are you? Or perhaps you don't need specific terms to describe what type of reader you are?

August 09, 2022

Self-help books I might need

Top ten tuesday - books and coffemug
This week's Top Ten Tuesday is Hilarious Book Titles but I decided to tweak it to self-help books I might need to survive this wilderness we call the world. It's either books or frivolous things so they might as well be books. This list is just for fun but who knows, someone might write them one day. For more Top Ten Tuesday, visit That Artsy Reader Girl here.

Self-help books I might need:

01 - How to stay sane when you really want to go mad

02 - Adulting for the perpetually lazy

03 - Survive a heatwave without deodorants and clean laundry

04 - The little book of introvert philosophy

05 - How to survive the apocalypse without crying or throwing a tantrum

06 - Cooking for the terminally distracted with two left hands

07 - Find the meaning of your life by sleeping

08 - How to find your rainbow when your unicorn had ran away

09 - Master 101 ways to deal with annoying people without resorting to murder

10 - Time travel for those who likes to take extra naps

Is there any how-to book you would like to have, fictional or real?

August 06, 2022

Fiction: Rent A Demon 1

This August Words for Wednesday prompts are provided by Elephant's Child over here. This week's prompts are: Meet, Glimpses, Apples, Taste, Memory, Garden And/or Letters, Year, Marvellous, Ways, Mother, Shadow.  I used all the words though not in their original form. Marvellous to marvelous since spellcheck keeps correcting me without that extra l. I'm not used to writing in British style.

typewriter and cup of tea

Fiction: Rent A Demon 1
Jackson Blake leaned over the table to get a closer look at the advertisement: Rent A Demon, 500 dollars or trade per day. Contact us by spilling a little blood. Was that a joke? And what demon was dumb enough to advertise in the local paper? And in Serendipity, a town crawling with demons and witches?
    In the back of Fred's Cafe, Jackson sat with a cup of black tea, a turkey sandwich, a slice of apple pie and the day's newspaper. It's nearly 12 o'clock on a Friday. A jingle on the door rang as someone entered. Without looking up from the paper, Jackson took a bite of his sandwich and placed it back on the plate. The taste of the herb mayonnaise reminded him of his grandmother's cooking. Ellie had a million, marvelous ways to make a sandwich using herbs she grew for her sauces. She believed sandwiches were full meals but only because she hated to cook. Memories of sitting in Ellie's kitchen and chomping on sandwiches while she concocted a spell ran through his mind. He had spent most of his life in her kitchen garden so called because it was crowded with potted plants.
    Glimpses of moving shadows on the black and white ceramic floor reminded him he was at the diner not Ellie's kitchen. The glass ring on his left pinky turned from the light blue to a deep maroon which meant he was in trouble or will be in a few minutes. Keeping still, Jackson picked up the cup and took a sip of tea while his eyes made a curious turn around the room.
    The tables were structured in a half circle around the back tables which meant the men were seated to Jackson's left, to his right and in front of him. They were large and tall and looked like they could break rocks with their bare hands. Jackson wished he shared their blessed genes. He was diminutive compared to them and he was shy of six feet by five inches.
      Jackson placed the cup back onto the saucer. None of the men were familiar to him even though Serendipity was a small town and rarely get tourists. Ellie had always said there was a nuance to every individual's appearance if you pay close attention. But she also said demons and witches alike could change their appearance with a simple potion or spell.
    Jackson's dress shirt was suddenly much too thin against the air-conditioned cold of the diner. But his synthetic leather boots kept his feet much too warm. Keeping his head down, Jackson took out some bills from his back jeans pocket and dumped them on the table. With the folded newspaper tucked under his arm and his backpack's strip over one shoulder, he proceeded to the door only to be blocked by one of the men. He was a head taller than Jackson. Jackson had to stretch his neck a bit to look the man in the face. The man's wide jaw shifted a bit as if he was chewing something.
    "Pardon me, sir," said Jackson and he stepped around the man but the man blocked his way again. "Please, I have an appointment to keep. If you'll just step aside." Around him, Jackson heard chairs scraping against the floor. When did the waitresses or anyone else left? He should had paid more attention.
    "Don't you remember me?" the man said. His voice was deep and his yellowish eyes bulged.
    Jackson didn't blink. "Should I?"
    "I'm Ambrus's brother, Ansen."
    "Sorry, did Ambrus lost an arm or a leg?"
    "Leg. You told him you can fix him and now he's a cripple."
    "That's not a nice thing to say. He can still hop about perfectly." Jackson chuckled.
    "You need to pay for what you have done." Ansen was definitely a demon. They were always getting revenge even for minor things.
    If Jackson had his powers, he would have sent this demon and his friends to a volcano he knew was brewing. A witch without powers is like a dead fish in hot water so said Jackson's father. He had never once not have some wisdom for Jackson.
    "Your brother knew the consequence. The lost of his leg was unfortunate but it had to be done or else he would have died." Jackson remembered Ambrus. The curse had infected his leg too deep, it was too late to save it. Though he was a demon like his brother, Ambrus was more accepting of the consequence.
    Ansen leaned down toward Jackson. "He would have been better dead." His breath smelled of beer and something rotten. Jackson stepped back. Ansen stepped forward. Jackson leaned back. "I don't suppose you like me to pay in cash?" He chuckled. Slowly, he reached behind him and dug into his jeans pocket and pulled out the vial. He started to fling it but he was thrown backward. His backpack slipped off his shoulder and dropped away as he fell onto the floor. Pain throbbed through his left hand. The pieces of the shattered vial bit into his palm. Not that it would have helped much since the potion will only stun a demon for five minutes. He dropped the shattered vial. The pieces landed on the fallen newspaper and soaked it with his blood. He stood up. "Okay, Ansen, what the heck do you want?"
    The demon sneered. "I want your power, witch."
    Jackson smiled. "Well, you're too late. It was taken away last month. You can kill me if you want but you're not getting anything from me." He looked around for an escape route but they all involved going through the ten demons.
    "Then I guess I'll have to kill you." Ansen grinned. "Boys, this one's mine." Around them, the other demons snickered and shifted back. Ansen gave Jackson a punch in the stomach and he fell down. Just like demons to play with someone and then kill them. Beside him, the paper suddenly burst into flames, turned to ash where dark smoke appeared and a woman stepped out. With one look at the demons, the woman waved a hand and the demons froze. She peered down at Jackson. "You called?"

August 03, 2022

Three Random Bookish Musings

girl gardener growing books
The book gardener (cropped), 2019
01 - The curious word: undulate — According to youtuber, Merphy Napier, undulate is used in a lot of books and I find that fascinating because I have not heard of the word until I saw her video. According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, undulate as an adjective means having a wavy surface, edge or markings. Undulate as a verb means to form or move in waves; to rise and fall in volume, pitch or cadence; to present a wavy appearance.  
    Already I read undulate in a couple of books including The Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter and a few that I can't remember the title but I wasn't searching for that word but it came up. I can't decide if this is a good word or not but I find it amusing however it is used. (You can watch Merphy Napier's video about the word here.)

02 - Is hoarding books a bad thing? — I used to buy a lot of paper books and then stacked them in a pile in a corner and I keep telling myself I'll read them some day and I sort of did read some of them. But now I buy ebooks and I hoard them the way I do with paper books except there's no pile. Whenever I open my kindle and check out all the books I have and haven't read, I do feel a bit guilty because I spent money on them (I brought them mostly during sales and some of them were free) and they aren't being read and it seems kind of sad. It's easy to snag some ebooks without even thinking too much. Of course, I could also do the same thing in a book store but with less impulse because once I get them home, I'll have to find a place for them which isn't easy. Now ebooks, I can store 2,000 books in my kindle and not even think about spacing or even organizing them. I don't have 2,000 books but I certainly have a whole lot which I swear I'll read them some day. Maybe.

03 - Read or not to read because of one word error — I read a review where one person decided not to read a book because the author misused the words its/it's and I thought that seems like a petty reason not to read a book because it's one error which most readers can easily overlook. The error was in the beginning of the first chapter (and anyone reading the book sample would easily see it). I suppose since it's so close to the beginning of the book, it sort of makes the reader think, if the author can't use one word correctly, then perhaps the rest of the book would be full of errors as well which might or might not be true. Who can say if this mistake is because the author or even editor didn't know how to use these words or if the person who set up the text make that mistake or it really is an unintentional mistake. But it's a reader's choice whether to read a book or not for any reason, good or bad, reasonable or not. For me, I wouldn't decide on a book base on a single error because no book is error-free even if they seem so.

Have you find any curious word you keep seeing in the books you read? Do you think hoarding books (paper or digital) a bad thing? Would you stop reading a book if you saw one error?

August 01, 2022

Almost Bookless July

desk with books, cup, doll, lamp, vase with flowers
01 - The universe didn't want me to finish reading too many books even though I did started on a lot of them. Maybe I wasn't in the mood for reading. Here's two books I finished in July:

And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie
A) And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie
> link
I didn't guess who the murderer was but I did think it could be any of the ten people which I supposed is the point of the book. Every one of the ten characters are unlikable and I didn't care who lives or dies. I just wanted to know who the murderer was. The ending was kind of a letdown. I don't think of this as a mystery, more like a murderer's confession. I supposed if you read the epilogue first, then there's no reason to read the story at all.
    Summary: The epilogue, I think, is really the story. But this was still good but it sometimes feels like I'm reading a play instead of a novel since this is mostly consisted of dialogues - external and internal.

And Then There Were Nuns (League of Literary Ladies Book 4) by Kylie Logan
B) And Then There Were Nuns (League of Literary Ladies Book 4) by Kylie Logan > link
I didn't read the first three books which I don't think makes a difference. I had started reading this first before Agatha Christie's And Then There Were None but midway, when they started talking about that book's plot, I decided I needed to read that first and it was a good idea because this book gives away everything about And Then There None.
    You think with a title like And Then There Were Nuns, this would be a fun book but nope. Aside from making fun of the nuns as looking like penguins in the very first chapter, there was no fun.
    The narrator and main character, Bea, seems set on reminding the reader she had really good sex with some guy named Levi and for four chapters, we are reminded of this and she even thought about it while talking to the nuns. But then she acted like a child around Levi after they found out about each other's secret. And her thoughts of Levi comes up a lot so you will be kind of stealthy reminded of what they did throughout the book.
    The writing is sort of like Bea talking to a friend or a fan because she seems very keen on making the reader understand her by adding additional comments as if we must know she didn't mean this or that or perhaps she wants readers to know she's a good person which I suppose she is, just maybe annoyingly too full of her own intelligence.
    Bea writes horror books (which no one seems to know about until this fourth book) and that's why she's good at solving mysteries - clearly, being a writer and having some intelligence means you can solve mysteries because you're Bea. So in the first three books, she had solved a few mysteries so the town's people thinks she can do it again. Even the sheriff asks for her help in solving the murder. I think it's strange that he thinks talking to nuns is a delicate matter and so he asks Bea to do it. These nuns are human beings - does anyone here know that? At first, Bea thought nuns are saints and couldn't possibly commit murder but then she changed her mind. Honestly, for someone who is supposed to be intelligent and seems to have lived two or more decades and is a writer, you would think she knows nuns aren't born nuns.
    So Bea is the main, main character and I guess it makes sense everything revolves around her but she seems to be doing the police's job. So yes the sheriff asked for her help but she might as well be the boss. So maybe they give some brains to the sheriff now and then but basically they are saying police and other people are incompetent compared to Bea. I find Bea condescending to her friends, to the sheriff and even to her guests at her B&B. When she describes people, she's quite insulting or does saying someone's head as bullet-shaped, face as bland as khakis, a Pillsbury Doughboy with a smile to match as good comparison?   
    There's not only the love drama of Bea but also the bits of drama between Bea and her three women friends. I don't even think are friends. They are like Bea's entourage since even though they had jobs and their own lives, they keep coming around to help Bea. I don't know how one person can run a B&B especially since she spends so much time solving murders but perhaps since her friends keeps coming around to help her, that must be how she does it.
  I was a little surprised who the murderer was since they came and went almost as if they didn't matter. It was only at the end with the last clue, then it was revealed who it was. Why didn't they go into hiding after committing the deed? The only reason I can think of is they wanted to be caught especially by Bea since they stupidly shows up at her place. I kind of wanted one of the nuns to be the murderer because why let the readers spent so much time with these nuns only to have the murderer be someone else? So what if that someone is related to the nuns, I just think it came out of nowhere, like a twist for no reason other than being a twist though there are already a few twists before the reveal.
    And the book cover? Yes there is a cat in the story but he is not involved in anything and all he does is annoy Bea and her B&B guests. The only reason I think he is in this book and the rest of the series is so they can have a cat on the cover because he certainly didn't do anything important or worth mentioning aside from looking cute.
    Summary: This might have been enjoyable if we are spared of the love drama of the main character as it seems to take over the book because every time the Levi character shows up or is mentioned, the main character Bea seems to dip in intelligence and maturity and yes, his name came up a lot (178 times so said my kindle). And so many food descriptions as if it's necessary to tell us each meals the nuns and Bea and her B&B guests eats - this is not even a food-related mystery. I thought it would have been better if the murderer was one of the nuns since the title of the book seems to suggest this but apparently, we are to protect the innocence of nuns everywhere even though I think the title makes fun of nuns. And those who haven't read Agatha Christie's And Then There Were None know there are spoilers for that book here.

02 - I'm behind in commenting on blogs again. I don't know if I should feel sorry about that or not. I might have been a little lazy because of the heat but that's just an excuse. Summer is always hot, that is nothing I haven't experienced so I can't really say why I sometimes just slack off for no reason, I just do. I don't think I'll ever catch up with commenting so I'll comment when I want to.

03 - I changed my header again but that's not much of a surprise. I don't know. I just wanted to change it.

04 - I watched a lot of book binding videos on youtube because I thought I could fix one of my hardcover books that had a loose spine and loose pages. It did look pretty easy. It seems book binding involves a lot of glues so now I think sniffing books means you're sniffing glues which is probably why some people are addicted to smelling books. But of course it's not all true since old books had their old smells that is not all glues. I'm thinking now I don't ever want to smell books unless they smell like apples or chocolate.

05 - I brought Matt Nathanson's latest album, Boston Accent (in digital format) and it was pretty good. I only listened to the album twice so I can't really judge until I have at least heard it a few more times. At the moment, I quite like the songs. Listen to samples at youtube.

How was your July? Are you having a nice August?