Tag Archives: essay

Learning to Slay Dragons

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Learning to Slay Dragons

One question that virtually every book lover gets asked is the inevitable, “What is your favorite book?” As if it were possible to choose only one book, in the entire universe of books, in all of the galaxies of genre, among all of the stars of narratives. And for those of us who collect books, we know this is a silly question, because why would we need bookshelves if only one book was important to us?

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You Can Be More: Writing for Boys

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You Can Be More: Writing for Boys

My last post shared some honest thoughts from Dave Rudden about boys and how they are taught by expectation and example not to feel. I hope that if you’re reading this blog post, you’ve given his excellent essay a read first. I have never been a boy, so my experience with this subject is certainly different, but I hope that my voice can join the discussion in a productive way. It’s an issue that we should all be talking about. Read the rest of this entry

Why Teenage Boys are Told Not to Feel, and Why That’s So Wrong

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Why Teenage Boys are Told Not to Feel, and Why That’s So Wrong

This week’s post features words from upcoming Irish author Dave Rudden, whose novel Knights of the Borrowed Dark will be released in August of this year. I was delighted and gratified to find his work because not only does the story sound like a really good read, it also resonates with many themes that I think are so vital for children’s literature. One of the most important, particularly for the book that I’m currently querying, is the recognition that boys are raised with an unhealthy and impossible expectation to be stoic and nearly emotionless, told that a man is always strong and does not allow himself weakness of any kind. Read the rest of this entry

No One Expects the Cheery Inquisition

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No One Expects the Cheery Inquisition

My love of video games started early, when I would watch my older brother play for a few hours at a time, who was an entertainment of his own with snarky running commentary and priceless reactions. Once, he nearly toppled out of his chair with surprise when his character opened a chest and a spider jumped out at his face. Remembering it now still makes me smile.

While my time for playing games has diminished significantly over the years, I still pick one up from time to time and sneak in some adventuring. I’ve played some great games, such as Journey, Uncharted, and the bizarre quirk that is Katamari, but lately I’ve had one on my mind that I wanted to write about. Last fall, I played Dragon Age: Inquisition from Bioware, which won the Game of the Year. It was such an engrossing experience to play, and I thought I might try to capture some of that sparkle with words. Read the rest of this entry

Lessons in Buttercream

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Lessons in Buttercream

         If you know me, it doesn’t surprise you when I pick up a new hobby. I pick them up like pretty pebbles along a hiking trail. However, unlike pebbles, my new hobbies don’t usually end up being tossed away or back onto the path where I found them. They typically wind up in decorative jars at home or sometimes, they even go through a polishing process until they turn into quite lovely things indeed. Read the rest of this entry

A Character Outside of His Book

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A Character Outside of His Book

The first time I saw him, I wondered if we had met before. I thought the feeling would be easy to shake off, because I knew that I’d never seen this fellow before. Instead, I felt that hesitant sense of discovery, the back-and-forth dance that some of us do when we think we recognize someone a small distance off, but we’re not quite sure. Read the rest of this entry

Saving Cake for Special Occasions

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Saving Cake for Special Occasions

Here it is, Marvel fans: the day that you have been anxiously anticipating for nearly three years. That’s right, ever since Tony Stark announced that the famous group of superheroes was going to avenge the world, you’ve been waiting for them to do it again. Read the rest of this entry

In Defense of Growing Up

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In Defense of Growing Up

From the beginning of our lives, there is one question that hovers over us constantly. When we gaze up into our parents’ eyes, it is there. When we crawl about the floor or dash away to inspect something new, we find it in most of the places we look. When we try something that we have not attempted before and we succeed or fail, it burns in our cheeks with victory or shame. Read the rest of this entry