Posted in Special Announcement

Collage Class with Jobe

THIS FRIDAY!

Collage Class with Jobe (6p-8p Friday 7/28) 
Have you ever wanted to make something creative, but felt too lacking in talent to be able to? Unlike drawing or painting, collage is something that everyone can do from the very first try! Collect words and images you find inspiring and bring them together in a way that is uniquely your own. Learn tricks about layering, the best glues to use, how to fix curling paper, and how to protect your finished product. Some supplies provided, additional supplies available for purchase. All skill levels welcome. Just $10/person.

 

Hosted by the illustrious
Moore Art Supplies and More
1015 Deer Street
​Conway, Ar 72034
​501.504.6968

 

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Posted in Reading Challenge, Reviews

Turn Coat by Jim Butcher

 

So I just finished the audiobook 🎧 for Turn Coat by Jim Butcher, book 11 in the Dresden Files series. 📚 Depending on the generation you belong to, this series stars your favorite, or second favorite, wizard named Harry. ⚡️ This particular volume centers around the warden Morgan, who has been framed as a traitor, and who has tasked Harry with finding the real killer 🔪 before the Council descends. ⏳ If you were worried there might not be enough excitement in these pages, concern yourself no longer: ⚰️ Vampires 🍷, mages, the wee ones of the Fair Folk, and werewolves 🐺 all make appearances, and we’re just getting started. People with powers, scary deep fae monsters, 👮🏻‍♀️ cops, giant spiders 🕷, mage politics & intrigue, and a genuine Native American nightmare shapeshifter demon keep this book 📖 churning through the action from cover to cover. Did I mention there is also a creepy island 🏝 that has to be reached by boat 🚤? Rest assured, volume 11 is no let down. 🎯

Reading Challenges
Here we go for reading challenge updates:

Hashtags for the challenges that had them:
#popsugarreadingchallenge
#rockmytbr
#diversereads2017
#whatsinaname2017

Truckin’!
Love,

Jobe

Posted in Reading Challenge, Reviews

Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff by Christopher Moore

Well, it’s really frustrating to have to re-write a post you already wrote once, but I love you guys, so, here. I read Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ’s Childhood Pal by Christopher Moore and I was pleasantly surprised by the rich authenticity of the time period, place setting, and religious customs depicted in Moore’s cheeky fiction. While the text is undeniably sacrilegious, as well as rife with cursing and bestiality jokes, I’d like to think that a Christian with a sense of humor might grudgingly acknowledge how respectfully Moore treats the actual character of Jesus, in his book called Joshua. Here is a sinless being who yet somehow maintains being a mostly normal kid. And then in the teen years, Josh remains a sinless teen, his lifestyle portrayed in sharp relief against Biff the sinner, who I’d go so far as to say represents most of us.

1361182242_gabrielThe book opens with an angel of God raising Biff (or Levi, who is called Biff) from the dead, with the holy mission of writing out the story of Joshua’s first thirty years. Those familiar with the more traditional Biblical text will recognize Josh’s time with the temple priests around age 12, discussion of the three wise men present at his birth, and the depiction of the end of Joshua’s life, the focus of the opening four books or so of the New Testament. But we readers here get to encounter a sweet, guileless Joshua and his lying pal Biff who mostly keeps them out of trouble, and some of Josh’s earliest miracles (think regular miracles, but with training wheels) as he tries to figure things out. We encounter his baptism-obsessed cousin John. There’s even an endearing Roman solider character who befriends Josh and Biff and looks out for them. Our pair of good Jewish boys is rounded into a trio with the addition of a little kid Maggie, short for Mary of the Magdalene.

sssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssWhat makes up the bulk of the novel, however, is Moore’s invented adventures of Joshua and Biff travelling East in pursuit of wisdom and how to be a Messiah, picking up knowledge about everything from Bodhisattvas to yoga to Kali along the way. Joshua learns philosophies from Buddhism, Taoism, Confuscianism. Moore even includes a number of moments where Joshua says something to the effect of, “Oh, that’s good, I’m gonna remember that,” as little origin stories for some of his most familiar sentiments, like the “do unto others” adage. Joshua and his loyal sidekick Biff pursue each of the three wise men in turn, studying in luxury here, ascetically there. Then, equipped with the knowledge of the East as well as the West, Josh and Biff make it back home just in time to pick up the more familiar stories of disciples, preaching on the mountain, water to wine, loaves and fishes. For anyone not offended by some pretty cheeky banter, Moore’s comedic depiction is a fun one.

20155658_10155591840405452_6760688062514265129_nThis is the first time I’d read a book for a book club, so that was an interesting aspect of the reading experience, too. Let me just say, there is no book that is not made better by Vino’s pizza! Word Virus is the club, sponsored through the library, and it was neat to meet new and different people with just this one book in common. I am told that readers familiar with Moore’s work will recognize an angel named Raziel and a demon named Catch from previous works. Reading this novel definitely made me curious to revisit the original texts of my Pentecostal upbringing, as well as the much more serious but just as loving novel, Christ the Lord by Anne Rice.

Reading Challenges
Here we go for reading challenge updates:

  • PopSugar 2017 reading challenge No. 31 A book with a main character who is a different ethnicity than you. This Christian writer states, “Jesus of Nazareth likely had a darker complexion than we imagine, not unlike the olive skin common among Middle Easterners today. ” And Wiki reports that “Most scholars believe that Jesus would have been similar in appearance to the modern inhabitants of the Middle East, due to the Bible (and other historical accounts) referring to him as a Galilean Israelite.” #blackjesus y’all. And while I’m at it #blacksanta too.
  • Book Dragon’s Lair Audiobook challenge Nope.
  • Book Dragon’s Lair Pages Read challenge This 464 pgs brings me to 7,737 pgs for the year so far.
  • Read It Again, Sam Nope.
  • My Reader’s Block Mount To Be Read (TBR) and Rock My TBR challenge Nope.
  • For the Diverse Reads challenge (here and here) Nope, but I’m reading that one now.
  • The Book Date Full House challenge Dang. This is the first title I wasn’t able to fit easily into a category.  I knew it would happen eventually but I was surprised how upset it made me feel: somehow I thought everything would just naturally fall into place until the challenge was completed! And only then would I happen to read books that didn’t fit these categories! But then I remembered that everybody gets one free space, so I’m using this for that. Yay!
  • The Book Date Read the Books You Buy challenge Yes, and this puts me at 10 read of 25 bought, or 40%, which is likely the closest to the next category, “Moderately Successful” (which starts at 41%) as I’ll get. I just can’t turn up a chance to buy books! They’re too wonderful! What if the apocalypse happens and the books we own in our homes are all that’s left of the world’s literature!
  • The Worm Hole’s What’s In A Name challenge Nope.

Hashtags for the challenges that had them:
#popsugarreadingchallenge
#rockmytbr
#diversereads2017
#whatsinaname2017

Got any fun plans for the upcoming weekend?
Love,

Jobe

Posted in Jobe Workshop Review

Step by Step Writing Class with Jobe: Reflection!

What a fantastic night with a fantastic group of people. Sci-Fi George, Romance Kim, and Poet Karen joined yours truly, Memoir Jobe! The conversation generated was so insightful and helpful, the writing written was so sparked and energetic and inspired! This was the most fun I’ve had in a minute.

I opened with introductions, as I always do, and then started with a super lame prompt because I was nervous and couldn’t find my notes. “I remember” was the awkward jump prompt in, but it went to great places from there. I told a little bit about Intention Inspired (I’ll do a blog post about just this later, but check it out, it’s cool). We discussed our strengths and weaknesses as writers. As always I had to also mention Nanowrimo.

From Writer’s Digest we took “Create a character with personality traits of someone you love, but the physical characteristics of someone you don’t care for” and opened it up to any combination of personality/appearance of person you love/hate.

For future use: I loved the idea from Write to Done of the 7x7x7 exercise. I made sure to mention Writing Exercises from the UK, which has a TON of prompts. And Karen told us about a random generator, Watchout 4 Snakes. I forgot to mention Poets & Writers.

In a similar spirit as The Write Practice, we used random words and phrases I collected from spam emails to generate lists of options.

We started with sprints, just some really short timed writings to get us going:
Computers can beat humans at chess
my collection of photos & posters from   Israel.
Amorphous Distribution Transformer Core

I was so inspired by how open and positive the group was I felt we had to do writing exercises based on each person’s favorite genre! I daresay there were some unexpected and impressive results!

SCI FI prompts
prestressed spiral rib
for the widening of
is intended for
feel a little uneasy about
Here please find
for railway sleeper , electric

ROMANCE prompts
at war, with
More than 15 years
Family Promise
you know that we’ve saved you
View an example of a Premium listing
ice cream machine.

POETRY prompts
Afternoon of Magic
we have two types
reaching the people with
dots mosaic bathroom
The payment after satisfaction
pumps and parts

I ended with some creative non-fiction (my genre) prompts, which are less common online than you might think. My favorite is David RM, who has a number of different kinds of non-fic/prose prompts. We started with a light subject, “Opinion Prompt – Do convenience items better our daily lives or shortchange our life experience?” Then we continued to a heavy subject, “Opinion Prompt – Do you think that people have the right to decide when to end their life?” I mentioned And Then I Came Back, which I can’t wait to read after hearing Estelle Laura speak at LitFest.

We end on a personal and emotional prompt, and I was was so impressed by everyone there being so authentic:

“Write about an event or time that you made a deliberate change for yourself. Write about what motivated you to make the change, and how you think that change has affected your life.”

Thank you so much for this opportunity. I was so blessed by these passionate, open-spirited writers. ❤

Love,
Jobe

Posted in Special Announcement

Writing Class with Jobe

 THIS FRIDAY!
Step by Step Writing Class with Jobe (6p-8p Friday 7/14)

Renew your interest and renew your commitment. Let’s talk about what works and what doesn’t. Let’s talk about writing groups, journaling, Camp Nano, building habits, Intention Inspired, and more. And of course, let’s write. A variety of imaginative prompts await, in the fellowship of those who share your fervor. When nobody else gets it, writers get it. Class open to ages 13+, new as well as experienced writers welcome. Class free, donations welcome.

Hosted by the illustrious
Moore Art Supplies and More
1015 Deer Street
​Conway, Ar 72034
​501.504.6968

Posted in Reading Challenge, Reviews

The Brotherhood of the Rose by David Morrell

 

The Brotherhood of the Rose by David Morrell

When I told my boyfriend that I needed an “espionage thriller” for the Pop Sugar challenge, he handed me this book, one of his favorites. I had no idea what to expect. As I read I found myself thinking along two lines: about the story, and also about the story as it is placed in time. For people who like reading about spies and guns and international intrigue, I would absolutely recommend this book. The genre isn’t generally my thing. But the way I was able to connect to the story was through the characters. There are a handful of significant characters, and their interpersonal relationships were the most interesting to me. There is a father figure, an older brother figure, a younger brother figure, and a love interest. That’s plenty for all kinds of conflicting interests to arise. I didn’t find the book to be thrilling, but I think I’m in the minority, since it rode the New York Times Best Seller list for some time. (It was also the first of a trilogy, and that was made into a mini-series.) I did find the book to be well written, and there were parts I liked a lot. I like YA and I like kid or teen main characters, so when I got to the section of the books that relives the backstory for the two brothers as boys, that’s where I could really hook in to the story. The overarching story barrels toward a kind of inevitable conflict & resolution that might be predictable, but the intensity of it still grips you, and any other ending would’ve felt dissatisfying.

Thinking about this book and it’s placement in time was another puzzle I considered. This book was published the year after I was born, in 1983. The technology available to these characters, even as elite spies, is nothing compared to the tech in any teen’s pocket today. The characters used coded phrases on pay phones; I’m not sure millennials know what a pay phone is. Where today we’d use a cell phone, the characters had walkie-talkies. How many times might gps tracking have saved the day? But the characters are innovative with the tech they have: in one scene, Saul uses a remote controlled toy plane, and it reminded me of all the tv shows that feature drones. Their printers made a lot of noise—I’m guessing dot matrix. But no time period is without its delays and inconveniences. Today we deal with load time, lag, dying batteries and forgotten chargers, no signal or wifi passwords. Is any of it really so different? We’re always going to root for the underdog or the hero who’s giving it all they’ve got, cleverly employing whatever they have. In that way, any story has the potential to be timeless. Just don’t be quick to knock driving an automatic up a hill, Saul. You can have your clutch and changing gears. Everybody knows you just put it on cruise control. 😉

Reading Challenges

Here we go for reading challenge updates:

Hashtags for the challenges that had them:
#popsugarreadingchallenge
#rockmytbr
#diversereads2017
#whatsinaname2017

July is practically half over. Passage of time is so weird.

Jobe

Posted in Jobe Update, Reading Challenge, Reviews

Reading Challenges Progress Report

With the end of June our 2017 reading year is officially half over! I’ve read 18 books so far this year, with piles of TBR and just bought stacking up everywhere (of course).

PopSugar #popsugarreadingchallenge Full List

No. 4 An audiobook Tell the Wolves I’m Home by Carol Rifka Brunt
No. 10 cat on cover Abarat by Clive Barker
No. 11 pseudonym The Girl With All The Gifts by M. R. Carey
No. 15 subtitle Abarat: Days of Magic, Nights of War by Clive Barker (Abarat book 2)
No. 17 mythical creature Tithe by Holly Black
No. 39 first book in series you haven’t read yet Divergent by Veronica Roth
No. 35 set in a hotel Lost Girls by Alan Moore, illustrated by Melinda Gebbie
No. 29 unreliable narrator Dead Beat by Jim Butcher (Dresden Files book 7)
No. 28 a novel set during war time Insurgent by Veronica Roth (Divergent book 2)
No. 13 a book by or about a person who has a disability Cinder by Marissa Meyer
No. 14 a book involving travel Allegiant by Veronica Roth (Divergent book 3)
No. 47 a book with an eccentric character Proven Guilty by Jim Butcher (Dresden Files book 8)
No. 51 a book about a difficult topic Autonomy and Rigid Character by David Shapiro
No. 17 mythical creature White Night (Dresden Files book 9)
No. 46 genre you’ve never heard of (“men’s adventure”) The Destroyer #46: Next of Kin by Warren Murphy
No. 16 book published in 2017 Midnight at the Bright Ideas Bookstore by Matthew Sullivan
No. 27 a book with a title that’s a character’s name Ash by Malinda Lo
No. 52 a book based on mythology Small Favor by Jim Butcher (Dresden Files book 10)

 

Challenge Completed Status
PopSugar 18 45% main
35% advanced
Audiobooks 7 70% Byte
28% Megabyte
Pages 6,920 58% Bonsai
29% Shrub
Colors 9 of 9 100% completed!
Reread 2 50% Déjà Vu
25% Feeling Nostalgic
TBR 6 50% Pike’s Peak
25% Mount Blanc
Rock My TBR 6 50% completed
Diversity 6 50% completed
Full House 18 72% completed
Books You Buy 8 35% Making Inroads
Memoirs 0 of 25 Dropping out
What’s in a Name 3 50% completed

Book Dragon’s Lair Audiobooks 7 books
Book Dragon’s Lair Pages Read 6,920 pgs

My Reader’s Block Colors & Read it again, Sam Colors Challenge is completed. 2 of my books count as re-reads.
My Reader’s Block TBR Pile 6 books, half way to Pike’s Peak.

The YA Book Traveler Rock My TBR #ROCKMYTBR   6 books

Diverse Reads from Read Sleep Repeat and Chasing Faerytales #DiverseReads2017   6 of 12, right on schedule.

Book Date Full House 18 of 25

Non Fiction On TBR for 2+ years: Divergent by Veronica Roth More than 500 pages: Allegiant by Veronica Roth Page Turner: The Girl with All the Gifts by M. R. Carey Middle Grade book: Ash by Malinda Lo
2017 published: Midnight at the Bright Ideas Bookstore by Matthew Sullivan Published pre 2000: Autonomy and Rigid Character by David Shapiro UK/European author: Abarat: Days of Magic, Nights of War by Clive Barker Back List book from fav author: White Night by Jim Butcher book 9 Dresden Files Book from a list: Cinder by Marissa Meyer
Award Winner: Abarat by Clive Barker Books about books Size word in title: Small Favor by Jim Butcher book 10 Dresden Files Two Word Title: Proven Guilty by Jim Butcher book 8 Dresden Files Debut book: Tell The Wolves I’m Home by Carol Rifka Brunt
Food on cover or title Cozy Mystery: Dead Beat by Jim Butcher, book 7 in the Dresden Files Book from childhood Diversity book: Lost Girls by Alan Moore, illustrated by Melinda Gebbie Australian/NZ author
Western USA/Canadian author: Insurgent by Veronica Roth Not really for you: The Destroyer #46 Next of Kin by Warren Murphy Attractive cover: Tithe by Holly Black Borrowed

purch
Book Date Read What You Buy 8 of 23 or 35%, which keeps me in the Making Inroads category. This is the hardest challenge to make progress on because I can’t stop buying books, so even when I’m reading books I’ve bought I’m still just keeping afloat in the lowest categories. I decided that if I buy a book after I’ve read it—but in the same year—then I can count it as bought and read. That’s fair, right? Possibly the most fun aside from buying the books and reading them has been organizing all my purchases with a shelf on 50bookpledge.ca.

The Cutest Blog on the Block Memoirs ZERO! I agreed that if I hadn’t read any memoirs by the midway point then I would drop this challenge. Sad to say goodbye but I wasn’t doing it justice. Memoirs just wasn’t in the cards for me this year.

The Worm Hole What’s In a Name #whatsinaname2017   3 of 6
Halfway through the year and halfway through the challenge. Pretty good since I have yet to choose a title based on one of these categories specifically (which I imagine I will have to do before the year is up.) Are you having better luck than I am?

Readers Forever,

Jobe