Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Shake it, don't break it.

Friends, thank you for your support of  The Book of Horrible Stories this past week! I'm very happy that people have responded so kindly to it so far.

However, I would like to address a concern that I've heard, which is that the binding on the handmade hardcovers might be too delicate to stand up to normal reading wear. With Wes's help, I made the video below to demonstrate that The Book of Horrible Stories in fact takes a lickin' and keeps on tickin'. And if a book that stands up to abuse is something that interests you, consider procuring a copy of your own via those links to the right!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

The Book of Horrible Stories

Here it is!

The Book of Horrible Stories is available in two formats, the first being the little handmade hardcover that you see above (and that you might have seen being made in the previous blog post). It costs $12 total (ten bucks for the book, two for shipping), and you can purchase it by clicking that PayPal link just to the right there.

Here's a shot of the interior (forgive me, I'm a lousy photographer):

From the "About This Book" section: "The cover is made of handmade lokta paper wrapped around chipboard [along with strips of recycled scrapbooking paper and handmade mulberry bark paper to cover the bindingthose I added later]. The interior pages are sheets of 100% recycled Mohawk Color Copy paper sewn together with linen thread. It's all held together with Elmer's Glue-All—good enough for first-grade crafts projects and good enough for me." And if that wasn't enough to sway you toward buying it, doesn't Wes's art look fantastic? I'm incredibly pleased that we were able to print it out in a way that preserved the detail he put into it. If you'd like to see more of the illustrations he did for this book, you can catch them on his blog.

Of course, I did mention that this book was available in two formats. Yup, I'm experimenting with e-publishing this time around! I'm not against e-books; I just don't think that reading one provides the same experience that reading a tangible book does. But e-books are a good solution for the space-conscious or the merry traveler, and assuming that you can afford the initial investment of a computer or reader (which is an issue I do have with them, but that's for another post), they're quite wallet-friendly. So with that in mind, for a mere $0.99, you can get The Book of Horrible Stories on your Kindle device, and again, you can do that by clicking a link you'll find to the right of this post. Or just by clicking here.

I suppose someone reading this post might wonder what exactly the book is about. Well, to put it succinctly, it's a short collection of dark fairy tales for modern times. Or, if you're looking for something more persuasive, here's what I wrote on a sign that I made to bring to readings:



If that doesn't say "buy my book," I don't know what does!

But to be serious about this, if you do buy this book in either format, thank you. I can write for myself all I want, but without some kind of audience, I know that the act of writing will start to feel hollow. Thank you for providing substance and reason for this thing I love to do.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Finally. It all comes together.

Whenever the lights in the room flicker, it's usually a sign that something interesting is about to happen.

Last week, well, it was a sign that I had turned on my printer/scanner/energy gobbler and begun printing pages.

Of course, the smaller Epson printer that I use for printing cover materials had to get in on the fun.

Not for long, though, because then it was time to return to the interior pages and start slicing.

And hammering.
(Yes, that's a chip clip being put to use.)

And sewing. 

With all of that taken care of, I could return to the cover. (And after this point, I stopped taking pictures so that I could work with the glue before it dried.)

What was the end result of all of this? Well, heh, you might, just might, have some idea. I hope it won't put you in a bind, though, if I book tomorrow as the day I finish telling you about this. "Bind"... "book"... get it? Hahaha! Haha... eh. Credit/blame for that pun goes to Wes.

(Sincere thanks to Hamish at No Media Kings for the instructions for this process.  If I've botched the steps, it's not his fault.)

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Try the bean and the cheese tamales!

Late post, but this is where I've been going one Saturday a month for the past couple months and where I'll be tonight. If you're looking for something to do that keeps you away from the NATO crowds and want to hear some writers read their stuff, come on out!

The Reading Series at the Tamale Hut Cafe

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

The best book title I saw during today's library visit:

(It's slightly more amusing, I think, if you head to a new page and see the title at the top.)

It's a question I've asked myself many a time. And one day, when I'm not already leaving the library with eight books in hand (or in arm, as the case was -- I cradle my stacks like children when I'm toting them to the car), I'll go back for Ms. Winterson's answer.

It's a disease, I believe, by the way: I have three books that I own at home that I've started reading and am in the middle of, four if you count Calvino's Italian Folktales, which I pick up and read a selection from at random. Yet I keep returning to the library for more. This can't be normal, can it?

It makes me happy, at least.