Friday, October 28, 2011

Missing: Hamsters

I have some sad news. The famous hamsters Chompo and Olivia have gone MIA. Right now they are either rotting in the garbage or having the time of their lives without me. I'm very upset and have decided to put up posters. I'm especially sad because I wanted to take Chompo and Olivia on a Halloween adventure like their Christmas one (Chompo and Olivia's Christmas Adventures). Here is the poster I made for them:

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

The Duck Award of Excellence

This post is pure diatribe. Pure, beautiful diatribe.

The Duck Award of Excellence
It's unfortunate but true: a lot of good literature doesn't make sense. It's like to be considered good a book must have attempted to make it as difficult as possible for their readers to understand what they are reading. I'm half kidding because I absolutely love painful old-school stuff like Shakespeare but Shakespeare has a good excuse for being difficult to understand: it's old. If it was difficult to understand then, everyone would have left the theatre frustrated and sent him to the guillotine (it was very violent back then). Many books that win awards are not very friendly to readers, though they may be doing all sorts of wonderful things like pushing boundaries and dealing with important subjects. But if I'm not enjoying a book, which doesn't mean it has to be a happy story or that it can't educate me on something, then what's the point? If I wanted to be educated on important topics only, I would just watch The Onion News. Seriously people. Many of the books I really love have not won any awards, or at least not the really important ones, like Christy, The Dwelling PlaceFortune's Rocks, I Capture the Castle, or fantasy book series like Dave Duncan's books, or CS Lewis The Chronicles of Narnia which do not necessarily have the most amazing writing in the history of the world, but they are the kind of stories that you get lost in. And there is nothing quite like getting lost in a book. Often I find I can't trust those little awards on books at all, I'll get all excited reading a book with an award, thinking, "This book can't possibly let me down, it won an award!" And then find myself feeling horrendously betrayed by the awards people when the books just plain sucks. Sadly, awards just can't be trusted. I believe the awards people are corrupt and give awards in exchange for bribes and personal favors (like those little kazoos in party favors or doing their laundry). I think there should fake awards for crappy books to warn readers. They could have a sticker with a picture of a duck on crutches and call it "The Duck Award of Excellence" and hope the authors don't notice the mini crutches. Only readers would secretly know it was a courtesy sticker that meant not to waste their precious reading time on such a lame book.