> Queer Books Please: January 2014

Thursday, January 23, 2014

On Hiatus

Time to make it official. I'm taking a break from the podcast for at least the next few months. I've found my attention drifting to other projects, and the fact of the matter is that I only have time for a certain amount of extracurricular activities. I also believe very strongly in offering my listeners a certain quality of work, one that can only be produced with my full attention and commitment. That's just not there right now.

The website will remain up, with all the assorted book lists and recommendations that I hope you've found useful. And the entirety of the podcast back catalog will remain available on iTunes and directly on this website here. Feel free to comment here or email me if you want to get in touch. And I'm always available on twitter, too, if you want to get in touch, although I've changed my twitter handle to @maryofftopic to reflect my.... wandering focus as of late.

If I get back into the podcasting game, whether with Queer Books Please or another project, that would probably happen in the second half of 2014, when life changes may see more time for me to focus on personal creative work.

Finally I want to say thanks to everyone for making Queer Books Please in 2013 a really fun and amazing project!

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Reading resolutions

Look, okay, the whole new year's resolution post seems a little overdone. And yet, here I am... writing one anyway. One my resolutions for the blog and the podcast is to make my Win A Book From My Bookshelf contest more of a regular feature, a monthly contest that makes it easy for readers and listeners to enter, and also makes it easy for you to interact and share with me and the other folks who enjoy Queer Books Please.  In that spirit, here we go!

January 2014 Win A Book From My Bookshelf Contest: Reading Resolutions Edition!

I think it's fair to guess that most people interesting in a reading blog and podcast may be forming some reading resolutions around this time of year. Whether you're simply hoping to read more volume, or challenge yourself to read something difficult, or branch out into a new genre, setting a reading goal or two is a great way to inspire you on your next trip to the library or the bookstore.

A Year In Reading Suggestions on Tumblr has a different reading prompt for each month of the year. I particularly like the suggestion for January, reading a book that came out in your birth year, and also the suggestion for May, which is to read a book written in another country.

Buzzfeed of course has a GIF filled list of reading related resolutions 

I have two primary reading resolutions this year. The first is to read more Virginia Woolf. I loved ORLANDO when I read it last year and think that her brilliance is well worth navigating the sometimes difficult prose.

My second resolution is inspired by knitting. Knitters and readers have a lot in common, perhaps most obviously the impulse to look ahead to your next project even as you're enjoying your current work in progress. Readers will often build up handsome libraries made up of books they intend to read, knitters develop a stash of yarn so that they are prepared for many projects into the future. Many knitters will reach a point where they need to stop buying new yarn and instead focus on knitting from stash.

In the spirit of that idea, I'm committing to reading from my book stash, working my way through my too read pile on my shelf and the unread ebooks on my kindle. I'm not saying I won't get any new books or get anything from the library. Who knows what might absolutely have to get covered for the podcast, after all! But I'd like to be reading at least 75 percent from stash.

Okay readers, now it's your turn! What are your reading resolutions for the year? 

CONTEST DETAILS: Enter this month's contest by commenting here! You can answer the question, or even just say hi and that you'd like the enter. You can earn an extra entry by sharing on tumblr or twitter. I'll be sure to pop in in the comments sometime and tally entries so you'll know if I caught your tumblr/twitter share or not.

Comment/share by January 31 at midnight pacific time to enter.

If you win, I'll send you a book from my bookshelf! I've got a bunch of great lesbian/lesbianish books that you can choose from, and I'll ship anywhere!

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Episode 47 - The Magician's Assistant

I've wanted to talk about THE MAGICIAN'S ASSISTANT by Ann Patchett for a long time, so here's my spoilery discussion of one of my favorite books. It's good to be back behind the mic after a few weeks off!

direct download

The Magician's Assistant
by Ann Patchett

Music used this episode

The Life and Death of a Certain K. Zabriskie, Patriarch (Chris Zabriskie) / CC BY 4.0

Slippershell (Kristin Hersh) / CC BY-NC-SA 3.0