Armchair BEA ~ Introduction

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This is my first Armchair BEA (or any BEA) and I’m looking forward to a week of book-ish goodness. Without further ado: An Introduction!

Describe your blog in just one sentence. Then, list your social details — Twitter, Facebook,  Instagram, etc. — so we can connect more online.

The Writerly Reader is my thoughts on how writers write and stories are told with a dash of other things that interest me, like the history of stage magic and ultimate frisbee.

Other places you can find me:

Carter Beats the DevilWhat was your favorite book read last year? What’s your favorite book so far this year?

I read a lot of great books in 2013! All of Jim Steinmeyer’s books are excellent. And then there was The Seance by John Harwood! But my favorite was Carter Beats the Devil by Glen David Gold. It hit all the right notes for me. Magicians, mystery, technology, and a dash of romance. Good stuff. So far this year, my favorite has been (coming as a shock to no one, I imagine) Tesla: Inventor of the Electrical Age by W. Bernard Carlson. It’s a very non-tabloid look at Tesla’s early years and the philosophy behind inventing.

Share your favorite book or reading related quote.

“…Reading is the drinking of strange wine. … Drinking strange wine pours strength into the imagination.” ~Harlan Ellison

If you were stranded on a deserted island, what 3 books would you bring? Why? What 3 non-book items would you bring? Why?

Only three? Fine, but I’m totally cheating by taking some thick collections.

    • My written-in Selected Works of John Milton from college. Puzzling through Milton and my notes on Milton from 15 years ago would keep me busy for a while.
    • The Essential Ellison. It includes most of my favorite Harlan Ellison stories, plus a good amount of new (to me) material. What’s that? No, no, that isn’t a photocopy of “The Paladin of the Lost Hour” stuffed in the back. This was a special lost proof copy of The Essential Ellison that includes the story Ellison’s editors carelessly forgot. *cough*

The Last Unicorn: Deluxe Edition

  • It was a tough call at #2 between Ray Bradbury and Harlan Ellison, but I chose Ellison because #3 is The Last Unicorn by Peter S. Beagle. I’m going to need the lilac woods and some Schmendrick on that damn island. And the deluxe edition, please, with “Two Hearts.” And I’m going to be sad that I can’t take the other Schmendrick stories Beagle has written.

Non-book items. In the spirit of keeping it low-tech:

  1. Pen
  2. Notebooks
  3. More pens and notebooks

What good is reading if you can’t write about it?

What book would you love to see as a movie?

In the land of fiction, Carter Beats the Devil, but I’d take any well-made late 19th/early 20th century magician movie.  😉 I also think Jim Steinmeyer’s Who Was Dracula? would make a great TV series. It’s a non-fiction book about Bram Stoker in relation to his writing Dracula and includes lots of theater history and literary personalities of the day. I know I’d watch a TV series about Stoker, Henry Irving, Oscar Wilde, and Walt Whitman. Wouldn’t you?


21 thoughts on “Armchair BEA ~ Introduction

  1. I love that you’d want The Last Unicorn if you’re stranded on a deserted island! I wanted to quote Bradbury too, but then I’d have had to post the Zen in the Art of Writing in its entirety. Who was Dracula sounds like an interesting book, I’ll be sure to check it out.
    It’s my first time at Armchair BEA too, but I’m already having so much fun!

  2. Tesla: Inventor of the Electrical Age by W. Bernard Carlson sounds like an interesting read. I had never heard of Tesla until my husband told me about him. Tesla was a man ahead of his time. He was so interesting. It’s just too bad the world at that time didn’t think so. He died penniless, I believe. Now we are looking back at his ideas and trying to use them. Crazy, huh?
    I’m a historical romance novelist whose stories mainly take place in Ohio. This is my first time attending the Armchair BEA event. I love to blog about historical places, events and people in interesting ways with stories most people have never heard about.

    1. Well, Tesla’s ideas just got a little too “out there” for investors. I never knew that there was an economic depression in the 1890s, which made it hard to get new technologies adopted. Plus, he totally sucked with money.

      I’ve been toying with writing some historical fiction set in the Midwest, but so far I haven’t gotten off the ground with it.

    1. Oh, most of it is barely legible! The prof encouraged us to take notes in it and we were able to use it on our last exam (which counted for little in comparison to the paper we had to write).

  3. The Last Unicorn is one of my all-time favorite books! I haven’t heard of the other books you mentioned, but I’ll totally have to check them out, especially Carter Beats the Devil. I know the basic story about Tesla, but was never interested in reading a dedicated book about him. Perhaps I’ll change my mind though. Thanks so much for sharing all your favorite books with us! Happy Armchair BEA!

    1. Tesla’s an interesting guy. Okay, well, I hang out with a lot of tech industry guys, so I see a little of them in Tesla. 😉 Definitely check out Carter Beats the Devil though!

  4. Hallo, Hallo!! 🙂

    I am a cheerREADER with Team4 of #ArmChairBEA! I am arriving a bit late on the route through the book blogsphere today, but I am thankful that I can lend a cheerful voice & ear! The best bit of these events is always the interaction & meetings of new book bloggers who tend to be readers who I find have a heap in common with myself! I love the ability to reach out to other bloggers & readers, whilst celebrating the joy of reading as a united front! Don’t you!? I am also a newbie to the #ArmChairBEA this year myself!! Wicked sweet!

    I am not yet familiar with the genre of books your disclosing on this post, but I have known about them, as I recognise the cover-art illustrations & designs! That is one thing I can credit as having a common thread of interest — I much prefer the originality of cover-art design vs always finding stock images being re-housed into a layout. There are times where I do appreciate stock images in designs of cover-art IF and ONLY if the cover then is tied into the story of the book! This is rare but it does happen and I do applaud the publishers who keep a keen on their cover designs! These books however that your highlighting are ones that interest me as who wouldn’t want to read about magicians & love stories!? Do they focus on the magicians who fall in love OR are the magicians part of the back-story of the romance!?

    Thanks for giving an introductory clue into a world of literature I have not yet explored! Always a lovely visit to open one’s mind to a new branch of books & authors!

    Jorie’s #ArmChairBEA Intro

    1. A story about book covers: I had been researching stage magic for a book I want to write and one of the books (The Last Greatest Magician in the World) has a cover similar to Carter Beats the Devil; that sort of iconic theater poster design. A friend of mine saw it and insisted I read Carter Beats the Devil. Pressed it into my hands. He’s a good friend. The love story is in the background, but it’s a really good one. 🙂

  5. joyweesemoll

    Pens and notebooks are a necessity! Couldn’t function without them, even on a deserted island.

    Have a great week with Armchair BEA!

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