Life, Health, Reading, eBooks and Passion.

It’s been a week since I posted due to a small but annoying health issue which is now, thankfully, resolved.  That said, anything that makes you feel a bit off hinders the process of developing a blog entry that makes sense.  I tried several times but feeling sorry for myself, when I re-read the draft it looked decidedly snivelly so I gave up.  Not a good look.

Over the past week I’ve been trying to decide what really should go into blogs.  As I noted in my first entry, having a blog is expected from any would-be author.  No-one suggests what a blog should be about.  Even though I thought about what I wanted to write, there is only so much time in the day to think seriously about it.

At the moment I’m not even reading specfic.  My current book is a duo from Desmond Bagley – ‘The Tightrope Men’ and ‘The Enemy’.  Bagley wrote mostly through the 60’s to 80’s and these days his genre would be action thrillers.  He writes well and the pace is just right – not the headlong spin of Ludlum’s Jason Bourne books which leave me gasping.  No, Bagley builds up neatly and you get to empathise with the characters and then he drops them in it and it’s all go with the occasional space for a breather (for both the character and the reader).  The funny part is I had to remember what the world was like in the 70’s while reading these books.  No mobile telephones or quick computer searches – it was all manual.  In a way that makes the adventure a bit more interesting because it is man against man and nature.    It then requires the author to really focus on character and setting.  It was really a good reminder of what writing is all about.

I’m also working my way through a few classics and currently am e-reading Emily Bronte‘s ‘Wuthering Heights‘.  I must be getting more discerning because the language really interests me these days.  The word pictures painted with quaint language that we don’t use anymore that never-the-less are extremely effective in setting mood.  I am enjoying this more than I expected.

That brings me to the subject of Project  Gutenberg.  The enormous quantity of e-book classics available online for free is mind-boggling – over 90,000 I think (but don’t quote me).  I’m using my PC or iPhone but it would certainly be better with an ebook reader.  I haven’t decided which one.  Tempted to get an iPad but a Kindle or similar is much easier on the eyes and can bit into a purse/handbag.  I have a huge library of specfic and classics but things like Tolstoy‘s ‘War and Peace‘ seemed a bit too heavy for me so I never bought it.  Now I can download it for free and read bits and pieces when I feel like it.

Founder of Project Gutenberg

Michael S Hart - ebook and Project Gutenberg Founder

While writing this I just noted that the developer of ebooks and founder Project Gutenberg, Michael Hart, died yesterday.  Still a young man at only 64 so that’s sad.  He was a man with vision but it is most likely that many publication houses might be cursing him roundly.  I have a great deal of respect for any visionary who sticks to their beliefs and is passionate about something this creative and useful.

So, there is my blog after a week of wondering what I would write about.  It’s like all writing, just sit down and do it – reminds me of the quote from a baseball movie with Kevin Costner – ‘If you build it, they will come’ rewritten to ‘if you sit down at the computer, it will come.’ OK bad joke – sorry :-/

Till next time.

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