Tuesday, October 31, 2006

YA Novels

I have been reading two "YA" books.

The Looking Glass Wars by Frank Beddor
Eragon by Christopher Paolini.

I finished The Looking Glass Wars this morning. It was very good and fun to read. The story moved at a fast pace, almost too fast. That's really my only complaint. There are parts of the story I wish he would have spent more time developing. The pace seemed to fluctuate between really fast and what I would consider a normal story pace. The character development was spot on though.

It is the first YA novel I have read in a while, which is fine by me. There is a lot of great young adult fiction out there.

I am trying to figure out what classifies a novel as YA. Is it young main characters, or the publisher saying, "This is appropriate for young readers"?

One of my favorite novels is Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card. Ender is a boy, who by the end of the novel, is just a teenager. The book was not published as a YA novel, yet the YA edition of it out sells the "adult" edition. There are no textual differences, just a more cartoon like cover.

Ender's Game is violent in parts. It is a dark story. It has some vulgar language. Yet, it is a successful YA novel.

As I am writing this I realize that a YA novel is a YA novel because the publisher says so. So I guess I figured that out.

So uhh... now I am debating publishing this post. It's not really a well written post. I have some issues with it. Like, how I didn't go into greater detail about the book I read. What was I thinking? Then, I asked a question that I answered in a few paragraphs, and not really to my liking. There is nothing informative in this blog. Other than the fact I named the blog Dumb Stuff I Wrote, which appears to be appropriate. This is some really dumb stuff.

So since this is dumb stuff, and the blog is called Dumb Stuff, I will publish it.

Two questions I had answered by myself in one post. That has got to be a record.

Friday, October 27, 2006

BFTSOB 4: The Worst Blog Since The First Blog

One of my biggest imaginary fans asked me, "What is the best blog you ever wrote?"

Well that's a tough question. I have written so many blogs, it's hard to pick a favorite.

One of my favorite blogs to write was the one about the small town in Alabama that was completely over run by man eating late night Taco Bell managers.

Then there was the one about "How to Shave All the Animals at Your Local Zoo and Not Get Caught"

Writing blogs is a form of release. I pretend that people actually want to hear what I have to say. We all know that they don't, but that won't stop me. I will write a blog about anything and then swear it is based on actual fact. Just because you tried to hit someone with your car and got away with it, doesn't mean that I wanted you to try it. What were you thinking Fezner? (Just so you know, Fezner is my super fan I made up.)

So, yeah! This blog is the product of me sitting down and writing with nothing particular in mind. This might just be the worst blog to ever written. You must feel so honored to have been here for it. I have a feeling you might have enjoyed reading the results of a 5 year old banging away on the keyboard. So here is a mid-twenties male bang away on the keyboard. I got to give the people what they want.

Signing out,
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Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Christian Fiction

This may not come as a big surprise to you, but christian fiction is not that great.

When I first became a Christian, I didn't read anything but the bible for a year. After deciding that it is OK to read something else, I picked up a few fiction books a the Family Christian Store in Gainesville.

Deadline by Randy Alcorn
The Visitation by Frank Peretti

While I enjoyed both of them, but they still lacked something I wanted in my fiction.

Shortly after reading these two books, I bought Heavens Wager by Ted Dekker. A decent work of fiction in its own right, but the prequel When Heaven Weeps was the first Christian book I truly enjoyed whole hearted. It was graphic and challenging, with characters that stuck with me. I had found my new favorite author.

Dekker released great original stories novel after novel. Blessed Child, Blink, and my favorite Thr3e. He also wrote, his most creative fiction series, The Circle Trilogy, which consisted of Black, Red, and White. All of which had great characters, both heroes and villains. Ted usually has a problem with villains, they all seem to be developed in the same manner. His villain have no quality, they are all evil to the bone. They don't deal with an inner struggle over what they are doing. Killing is what they do, and there is no remorse. His villains are never doing what there doing for reasons other than greed and hatred. The Circle Trilogy is the only exception.

But ever since Ted wrote The Circle he seems to be in a slump. Not a slump in the sense of he isn't coming up with good ideas. The problem is in the way he tries to force a Christian message into his stories.

Take his newest novel Saint. The books starts of at a heart pounding pace. The protagonist, Carl, doesn't know who he is, other than that he is an assassin. He is given a mission, that turns out to be a farce, just a training exercise. The woman he thinks is his wife, is not.

As the story unravels the pace quickens, and you find out that Carl is really a character from a previous Dekker novel.

Now you feel like you are in for a wild ride. That is when the book comes to a stop. Now it's time for a good talking to. The message in Saint is about love. Which is fine, I love love. But, it is completely out of place here.

There it is, the problem with Christian fiction. That in the midst of a great story, you have to stop everything and add in a moral, that the reader probably already knows, and disrupts the whole story.

This can be done right, but, I think that your story should come from the moral, don't just throw one in so your christian publisher is happy. When Heaven Weeps was an influential book in my christian development. One of the reasons was because the moral was not forced, the lesson that Ted wanted to teach was in the context of the story. When you have to have an all wise teacher, stop in the middle of the story, and start preaching to the reader, you are doing it wrong. When Jesus told parables, the story was the lesson. None of the characters had to stop and give a sermon. If you have to tell readers what the moral is, then you are not telling the story right.

Come on Ted you can do better!

I will continue to read Dekker, at least for one more book. But, after reading Orson Scott Card, Tim Pratt, and other main stream authors, it is hard for me to settle for sub-par fiction, just so I can read works by Christian authors.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Calling in Sick

I haven't posted in a long time. I've had a lot of stuff going on, and didn't have time to get on the computer. But here is the recap in hyperfast instant replay!

In the past 2 weeks I meet my fiancees parents for the first time, got married, and started a new job today.

Wow that was a hyperfast recap!

I am married now, which is way better than not being married. It is good to know that I found the right woman and that I get to be with her forever. Plus, there are certain perks that come with being married. *wink wink*

Any who, at my new job I have access to the Internet, which means more blogs and more slacking off. I can't believe those turds at Publix wanted me to work when I was on the clock. Can you believe the nerve?

It made me want to call in sick! But, I am a honest man and would not call in sick unless it was so. Which gave me an idea. I figured out how to call in sick not be lying!

Lets say that you wake up in the morning and just can't cope with the fact that you have to work. You say to yourself "I wish I was sick and about to vomit, so I could call in sick." Well now you can be that sick whenever you want. Here is how it is done.

Get in your car and drive to you local KFC. Preferably one with the buffet. If they don't have the buffet, be sure to buy some original recipe for quicker more violent results.

But, for those of you who find a KFC with a buffet, you will want to eat from it. Stay around the "chicken" side of the buffet, and avoid the salad. Eat some original recipe, be sure to get some chicken livers too. I would say that two trips to the bar ought to be enough. Just don't go back for thirds, because you just want to call in sick, not get a hospital bill.

At this point you can choose to call in, or better yet, show up at work like your ready to work. While calling in would probably do, nothing is better than to have your employer actually see the sweat pouring down from your face. There is no way your boss can say you are faking after he sees the green hue your skin tone has now become. You may need someone to drive you home because you will have most likely lost most of the feeling in your legs by now.

Well, you did it. You are now home sick. Was it worth it you lazy bastard?

Friday, October 06, 2006

A Typical Post

I really like writing blogs. There is one problem though. I find it hard to think of stuff to write about week in and week out. Most of the blogs I read with any regularity consist of the authors updating us on the week or day they are having. So here it is, my attempt at a typical post.

Last night was date night. The first one in a while. We went to the Macaroni Grill, and stuffed our selves full of carbohydrates. Correction: I stuffed myself full, my fiancee didn't eat that much, on a count she had a gettin' married party at work and got to eat lots o' cake. Also, before we went to eat we picked out and bought temporary rings. We are planing on giving them to our kids after we get our "real" wedding bands. Oh yeah, and after we have kids of course.

We also got our wedding license this past Wednesday. I felt really good about that.

Just so you know how long it takes me to write a blog, it has now been 15 minutes since I started writing and all I have done is two paragraphs and one sentence excluding this paragraph. That's sad. Maybe once I get married and get my job situation figured out I will be able to think more clearly and write better blogs.

Maybe writing blogs in the morning isn't the best idea. For me, that's kind of like writing a blog when you are drunk.

"Ifin I were a planet that had it's own time zone, I would be Pluto. Oh, wait, that's not a planet anymore. Then if I were a planet made out of butter pecan ice cream I would call myself 'Chester: The Planet made from Butter Pecan Ice Cream'. That would be so awesome. Then I could make up my own laws and have my own butter pecan currency. You could either spend your paycheck or eat it. Hehe. I am so drunk" said intoxicated Fedge.

Well, so maybe writing in the morning is better than writing when your drunk. But, not by much.

It has now been 25 minutes since I started writing and I am done waisting my time on this not so typical post. Again, I feel as if I must apologize to those that are reading it. It was the morning when I wrote this, and my blog is called "Dumb Stuff I Wrote". If that isn't warning enough, then I don't know what is.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

You've Got to Flow, Pancreatic Juice

I still remember the first non-christian music cassette I ever owned. Weird Al Yankovic's Polka Party! I mean who could forget such hits like "Toothless People" and "Living with a Hernia"? Clearly not me!

This past weekend I picked up Straight out of Lynwood the new CD/DVD from Weird Al, and it is everything I expected.

I am one of the biggest Weird Al fans I know. I don't know anyone else that owns all his records. But, I will be the first to admit, he recycles song ideas.

It seem that on every other album he has a song about what is popular on television at the time. "Couch Potato" and "The Brady Bunch" are filled with just references to TV shows. Frankly they aren't really funny. Except for the fact that the Brady theme song sounds really good when sung to the tune of "The Safety Dance".

Each album usually has a "love" song. The songs usually deal with how much he hates the woman he is with, or how much she hates him.

Then he throws in a food song like "Grapefruit Diet" or "Taco Grande".

Then a talk show song like, "Jerry Springer" or "Talk Soup"

There is one idea he keeps rehashing that is always enjoyable though. The polka covers! It doesn't get old, listening to recent hit songs redone polka style.

That being said, Mr. Yankovic also comes up with some new stuff on each album. One of my favorites is on the new CD. It's called "Pancreas". It's a song about, well, his pancreas, and how much he loves all the stuff it does for him. He loves the way it breaks down carbohydrates just for him.

Really, I don't know why I am writing a blog about this. I think it is just because I wanted to call it You've Got to Flow, Pancreatic Juice. I think I also wrote this because I haven't updated my blog in a while, and I feel I have an obligation to my imaginary fans. I do so hate disappointing them.