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2019 Books #26-50

7 Dec

Here’s the next set of twenty five books I was fortunate enough to read in 2019:

2019 Books #1-25

28 Sep

Here’s the first twenty five books I was fortunate enough to read in 2019:

2019 Movies #1-25

4 May

Every year I set out to enjoy a minimum of 100 never-before-seen movies. Below is the first quarter of film viewed in 2019. Astonishingly, five films have earned the coveted five stars: Force Majeure, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, Repo Man, Five Feet Apart, and The Myth of the American Sleepover.

There Are Things You Notice…

15 Apr

…when you leave your busy, your worry, and your hurry behind. There are things you notice when you look forward. Free of expectation, life has a way of lifting secret curtains.

A thousand times. I must have stepped out of my dwelling a thousand times. Yet tonight, for a brief miniature walk, I noticed things. New things.

I noticed a castle across the way. A drawbridge. A moat. And in that moat was a bonsai tree with a most peculiar branch extending like an eager hand reaching for land.

I noticed a boutique. And in this boutique, was either the smartest or the laziest mannequin I have ever known. For this mannequin did not stand on her two feet. Oh no, this mannequin sat its plaster keister on a chair. That’s right, a sitting mannequin. Genius. Who knew?

I didn’t. But I do now.

What do you notice?

2019 Picture Books #1-25

4 Apr

Since last year, in order to stay current and immerse myself in the world of imaginative visual storytelling, I set out to read a minimum of 100 never-before-read picture books. Here is the first quarter of books read in 2019:

Birthday Book Stash

10 Mar

A writer loves (or should?) to read, so birthdays become another excuse to add more books to one’s never ending book pile.

Thank you to my wife for supporting my dust collecting hobby and to Eslite in Taipei for supplying a delicious buffet of English books. And to my dearest wife, please forgive me for ordering some (TONS!) more online through BookDepository. #readtowin

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2013 PiBoIdMo

24 Oct

While fall is cooling our bodies as winter prepares to visit, allow Tara Lazar’s Picture Book Idea Month to warm your creative soul!

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CraveWriting has participated for the past three years and looks forward to awakening from a dormant period of children’s book writing hibernation. We strongly encourage all imaginators to participate by visiting TaraLazar.com and creating 30 original picture book ideas during the month of November.

Happy imagining everyone!

MERRY CRAVEMAS

25 Dec

WISHING EVERYONE THE HAPPIEST OF HOLIDAYS!

!!MERRY CRAVEMAS!!

Taking Offense is Offensive

21 Mar

“Offense is taken when people employ fear as a sixth sense.” The Crave

It’s easy for people to take offense when it was never given to them in the first place.  Being offended by something is equal to theft and should be punishable by law.  Though I suppose it’s natural to object to your sense of pride, race, sex, or nationality being compromised. But if you don’t report the crime, you’re innocent. In other words, keep it to yourself.

Sadly, a vocal minority refuses to shutup. In recent years, the world has turned the ‘freeom of speech’ and ‘separation of church and state’ bandwagon into the world’s longest roller coaster.

From censorship, to whitewashing the planet with political correctness, to the continued tradition of burning books, acceptance seems to be an endangered emotion as intolerance and hatred bulldozes the natural landscape.

We often hear “not in my backyard” used when someone is opposed to something entering their community. I think the time has come to take that phrase literally. If it’s your backyard, then by all means, we won’t have the “International Overweight Same-Sex Partner Practicers of Paganism Parade” march on your property. But if your nextdoor neighbor wishes to throw the afterparty, deal with it (quietly and in your own backyard). As Kathleen Duey wrote, “I do not believe in censorship outside the home. If you don’t want your kids to read something, fine. Adults and other people’s children are beyond your jurisdiction.”

As children’s writers we face a rogue’s gallery of enemies. From close-minded librarians, to spineless administrators, to opionated parents; the deck is stacked with trump cards, with none being dealt to the writer.

The bottom line is don’t try to purposefully insult anyone. If you don’t have any regrets after you, your critique group, your agent, and editor have approved the text, then you’ve got nothing to worry about. If anything the vocal minority will only bring your book to the attention of the open-minded majority thus increasing sales of your book.

Despite an increase in sales, it stings to think that any number of children may be deprieved the chance of enjoying your creative work. One must hope that as they mature they are given the freedom to think for themselves and then may discover your work and allow their children to feast upon its imaginative goodness.

For a hilariously insightful look I recommend reading Chapter 44: Censorship from “The ABCs of Writing for Children,” compiled by Elizabeth Koehler-Pentacoff. Children’s writers share their personal experiences with censorship. Patricia Polacco wrote, “Mankind with creativity is filled with light. Those who aren’t are dark.”

Withour further ado, here is a joyful list of links that deal with political correct, censorship, and all things ‘offensive’. But beware that if you happen to take offense from any of these, well…that’s your problem and not ours. Though please permit us to laugh at the outlandishness of your offense. Good day imaginators!

Top 100 Banned/Challenged Books: 2000-2009: Published by the American Library Association.

American Bookseller Foundation for Free Expression: The title is self-explanatory.

Top Politically Incorrect Words of 2009: A detailed list from the Texas based ‘Global Language Monitor.’ My personal favorite is the listing for ‘Minority’ – “Talking about minorities is considered insensitive to minorities since this can make them feel, well, like minorities.”

Censorship Quotes: A slew of quotables on censorship. Some funny, some thoughtful and others like George Bernard Shaw’s “Assasination is the extreme form of censorship” are mind-blowing.

Politically Incorrect Dictionary: Half accurate, half edgy, this brief list profiles PC alternatives to politically incorrect words.

Banned Words: Another list of un-PC words.

Campaign Against Political Correctness: It almost seems hypocritical to take offense to others taking offense, but nonetheless it may be a cause you find worth fighting.

www.cravewriting.com

21 Mar

FYI: The new url cravewriting.com is now active and will directly link here. Therefore, you no longer have to type ‘wordpress.com.’ Instead simply use cravewriting.com to access the site!

Happy imaginating everyone!