Quick! Write something inspiring!

At the end of last year I received a lovely surprise when checking how my little blog was chugging along via my handy dandy smartphone – one of my followers/followees cricketmuse nominated me for The Very Inspiring Blogger Award!

I was a little stunned because I don’t really consider my brand of blogging to be particularly inspiring, but when I saw that she had nominated me because of my Save The Words Saturday posts (may they Rest In Peace in the discontinued blog feature afterlife) I was touched. I only started the Save The Words Saturdays because I personally love strange words that have fallen out of use, savethewords.org was such a fun site I wanted to spread the word (pardon the pun) about it, and since it was the National Year of Reading I wanted to do some new features which promoted reading and literacy…..wow, ok now that I read that back it does sound a little inspiring O.O

Anyway, I didn’t initially seek to inspire, but I’m tickled pink that cricketmuse was inspired by my posts (especially because her blog is quite the inspirational itself, which is why she was nominated for the award and paid it forward to me) and I firstly just wanted to say thank you 🙂

Before sitting down to fulfil my nominee duties I did a little search to try to determine the origin of The Very Inspiring Blogger Award (like I did for The Versatile Blogger Award) but I couldn’t find a starting point, and the rules seemed to differ somewhat from blog to blog.

From what I can gather the protocol for a nominee is as follows:

  1. Thank the person who nominated you and link back to their blog. Thanks again cricketmuse!
  2. List 7 random things about yourself. See below ↓
  3. Nominate other blogs. This is where there’s a bit of a discrepancy – some nominated blogs said 7 and some said 15. Since I nominated 15 for the Versatile Blogger Award and I love repeated numbers (which may or may-not be one of my random facts ;)) I’ll be doing 7. See these below ↓ also
  4. Notify the nominees. Will do! 🙂
  5. Put the award logo on your blog.
very-inspirational-blogger-award

Done and done!

The 7 blogs that I nominate are:

  1. cricketmuse – because one good nomination deserves another and her posts always make me 🙂
  2. Crafting Art with Words – a beautifully simple blog which constantly inspires me with its short poems and accompanying photographs
  3. The Daily Post – for inspiring thousands of bloggers with new ideas for posts
  4. The Better Man Project – pick out any one post off this blog and you will find a simply honest and inspiring post about one man and his quest for self-improvement
  5. witches can be right – a wonderful book blog which is more about stories than books – some of the posts are about fairy tales, fables and spirituality and on the whole I find them very inspiring 🙂
  6. 12 Books in 12 Months – The name of this blog speaks for itself – it follows the journey of a writer completing the first drafts of 12 books in 12 months (and then beyond) and what she has managed to achieve blows me away.
  7. Doctor Grumpy in the House – nominated/awarded because it inspires me to have a hearty chuckle whenever I read a new post, and to feel a bit better about the insanity that is often in my own field (libraries/tertiary education)

And now for the 7 random facts:

  1. I’m crazy for paint samples.
    If I visit a hardware/home improvement store the first place I’ll make a beeline to (unless I’m on an in-out mission) is the wall of little paint sample cards that people can take home to help them decide on what exact shade of beige they want to paint their living room. In my life so far I have never actually needed the samples for their traditional purpose as I’ve never repainted/decorated a room, and yet I have a growing collection of them in a box at the bottom of my wardrobe. Why? Well besides the obvious fact that I’m a tad cuckoo, I just love the ridiculous names given to the paints! Whoever comes up with the names for paint must have an awesome job, but also I suspect they have never seen or experienced the origin of some of the names – why is Self-Destruct beige? Why is Hide And Seek a bright yellow (anyone who had played that game before would know that a yellow-clad participant would be an instant target)? And what kind of Looking Glass is a gross grey? All of these (and many more baffling and giggle-worthy ones) are in my collection.

    paintsample book

    A world of giggling and sniggering possibilities!

  2. Ditto for racehorse names
    I don’t collect these but I do enjoy reading them out of racing forms or when there’s a race on TV – and I’m not even a gambler! I don’t really understand the betting system for races, but I’m fine with it as an activity because the names are so great! The best thing about them is the juxtaposition of noble, inspiring names (such as Aristides, winner of the first Kentucky Derby; Might and Power; and Black Knight) against silly ones bursting with puns which I figure were thought up just to embarrass any race official or bookie who has to shout them out  (i.e. Bodacious Tatas; Nosupeforyou – yes, based on the Soup Nazi from Seinfeld; and, That’s Whatshesaid).

    "An coming from behind is That's Whatshesaid!"

    “And coming from behind is That’s Whatshesaid!”

  3. I’ve never been out of Australia
    While I have been on holiday in New South Wales (I live in Western Australia) I have never travelled overseas. This is pretty unusual for someone my age (26) as a trip to Bali, Thailand or New Zealand is a bit of a rite of passage for most young Aussies, but I’ve never had an interest in cheap, booze-fuelled holidays and would rather save up for a more cultural trip (say to Italy, Greece, France, the UK or Russia) that I can enjoy at an age where its more meaningful…plus so far in my life I’ve been too poor and disorganised to travel :s

    the world

    I’ll get there eventually world

  4. I love repeating numbers
    Like I said above, I have a bit of a thing for repeating numbers. This may be because my birthday is the 22nd of October (alas, not November), and I certainly love multiple twos the most, but really any repeated number makes me happy. You know how some people make a wish if they see 11:11 on a digital clock? I don’t personally do that, but I get a tiny thrill any time I  see any repeated number time. I addition to this (and this is where my fixation takes a slight OCD turn) when I use a microwave and the recommended time allows me to do so, I will cook my food for a length of time with three repeated numbers (i.e. if the box says “cook for 2-3 mins” i’ll cook it for 2 minutes and 22 seconds). I’m not saying that I have to do things in repeated numbers, or that If I didn’t it would upset me (which I think means I don’t actually have OCD) but still…so far this list is making be sound like an insane hermit O.o

    2 22-cover

    Funnily enough I have never seen this movie, despite the name…

  5. I have an ever-increasing collection of earrings and head-bands/bandanas etc.
    Ever since high-school I have expressed myself through headbands, clips and other hair decorations rather than colourful clothing and make-up. When I shaved my head for the Shave for a Cure this extended to earrings because they could be seen so much clearer than when I had long hair. Since then matching my hair accessories and earrings to my (now much brighter) clothing has kind of become my “thing”, which makes it very easy for people close to me when looking for birthday and Xmas presents 😛

    Some of my earring collection - all the non-hanging ones and ones that don't get worn a lot reside in a little drawer of a jewellery box

    Some of my earring collection – all the non-hanging ones and ones that don’t get worn a lot reside in a little drawer of a jewellery box

  6. I’ve recently become obsessed with Lush Fresh Handmade Cosmetics
    This started on my birthday last year when I popped into their store in the city centre of Perth (which I had frequented before to buy a Mother’s Day present and generally to sniff delicious-smelling concoctions) and bought myself some bday goodies. I then went back when I received some birthday moolah and my shower has been invaded by amazing Lush products ever since.

    6026-happy-Happy-Joy-Joy-500x500

    The newest item on my wishlist

  7. I have a big collection of bookmarks and I try to match the bookmark I’m using to the cover art and/or subject matter of the book
    I have loved bookmarks since I was a kid as I loathed the thought of folding down page corners (*shudder*) or
    using any old piece of paper to mark my place. As I got older my collection grew as I usually bought a new bookmark with each bookshop purchase, and as friends and family knew I liked them I often was gifted free bookmarks they collected or when I was given a book. Since I have so many its pretty easy to match the bookmark to the book, and as I said above, I like colour coordinating so that just filters down to my books as well 🙂

    My current collection of bookmarks

    My current collection of bookmarks

I’ll end with a quick nag – the Micro Reviews Poll ends on the 27th of January, so if you want your say on the future of Micro Reviews get voting! Currently all 4 votes are in favour of continuing the Micro Reviews but supplemented with some full-length reviews, so that seems to be the most likely outcome, but there is still time for a different result if you so desire.

Oh! and this post is a bit of a milestone for Book Polygamist – it is my 200th post! 😀

I just want to say a big thank you to all my followers and commenters. We may be a small group, but without you, my Bookbaggers, I would probably have abandoned this endeavour (as a usually do with projects after a while) long ago, and that would be a shame because I really do enjoy writing it and reading your feedback.

Bring on post number 300! Also Book Polygamist’s 2nd birthday is approaching (March 5th) and since I completely forgot about the 1st birthday I will make sure I don’t let this one pass without some kind of special surprise 🙂

In the meantime, keep your collective eyes peeled for my Top 10 Books of 2012 and The 2012 Book Polygamist Awards which will be up before the end of January, as well as the usual Notable Quotables, updates on my current reads, and once the poll has finished, more Micro Reviews (as well as some sorely neglected full-length ones that are waiting in the wings).

Until then I wish all my fabulous Bookbaggers:

Happy Reading!

Perhaps on one of the wonderful blogs I nominated 😉

Advertisements

Craig Silvey : Jewel of the West

May has been quite light on posts, mainly because I have been bombarded with assessments. But since a couple of these assessments were presentations that fit in quite nicely with the theme of this blog, why not mix business with pleasure? 🙂

The first presentation I did was for a training unit – we had to choose a book, book series, or author and “train” a small group on the topic. I chose my favourite author, and one who is not very well-known – Craig Silvey.

He's a handsome devil isn't he?

I discovered Craig Silvey a few years ago when his first novel, Rhubarb, was chosen as the “One Book” for the Perth Writer’s Festival and there was promotional material in my local library. I couldn’t get my hands on it for a while as all the copies were out on loan, but when I did it was well worth the wait. Rhubarb was one of the most unusual and beautiful books I had ever read, and became my new no. 1 book of all time (a position held by Watership Down by Richard Adams since I was 11).

Rhubarb

The plot was simple while also, somehow being complex – It is very character and setting focused and so the plot seems like a natural progression of little interwoven stories, taking a simple thread of plot and weaving it into an intricate tapestry. The main character is Eleanor Rigby (yes, like the Beatles song) who is young, delicate and blind. She goes through her (newly) sightless world with her faithful if somewhat incompetent guide dog Warren, as she wanders the vibrant streets and beaches of Fremantle, Western Australia. She lives with her mother who has become almost comatose on the couch, immersed in her own television world, and has only vague, lonely acquaintances. The other main character is Ewan Dempsey, a young man who is agoraphobic and spends his days smoking weed, making cellos to sell and playing his own collection of cellos. The two meet when Eleanor passes by his house and is drawn by the sound of his music, and an awkward, confused, but touching romance begins. The book is written almost like poetry – Silvey uses a lot of alliteration, repetition and strung together words, which create a wonderful sense of pace and panic, especially in parts where Eleanor is trying to negotiate the Fremantle streets. Even after all these years Rhubarb is still on my list of top 10 books I’ve read.

Jasper Jones

When the second novel of Silvey’s, Jasper Jones, came out in 2009 I was so excited because I hadn’t even heard he was writing another. I was surprised by how different Jasper Jones was to Rhubarb, but I was even more surprised when I grew to love it more than Rhubarb. The book revolves around a 13-year-old boy called Charlie Bucktin (I bet you were expecting me to say Jasper jones :P) who is a quiet, bookish boy who aspires to be a writer. it is set in rural Western Australia in the 1960’s. The book begins with Charlie reading in his sleep-out bedroom when he gets a surprise visit by Jasper Jones, a half caucasian, half aboriginal boy a few years his senior who is the troublemaker and scapegoat of the town. Charlie has never had prejudice towards Jasper, maybe because his best friend, Jeffrey Lu, is Vietnamese also is victim to the towns racism and small-mindedness, or maybe because he sees that the town is not in the right and Jasper may be a good person. So, when Jasper asks for Charlie’s help, and to follow him into the bush at night, Charlie goes with him. What Charlie discovers is a secret too big and heavy for any teenager to have to keep, but he does, for the sake of Jasper Jones. Jasper Jones has been compared to Harper Lee’s To kill a mockingbird because it has the same Southern Gothic feel to it, but in an Australian setting, as well as themes of racism, small-town-small-mindedness, and growing up. It is an amazing book, touching and disturbing then just a hop-skip-and-jump away to complete, youthful hilarity and triumph. It gets added points for making me cheer out loud at a cricket game, when I have never had the slightest interest in cricket.

I would recommend both Rhubarb and Jasper Jones to anyone, because they are amazingly written, especially for such a new, young writer.
If you would like any more info check out the slide show that I used for my presentation: Craig Silvey
and the group of bookmarks I’ve collected on del.icio.us that relate to Craig Silvey: Craig Silvey del.icio.us bundle