A Year of Reading the World: A Q&A with Ann Morgan

An Interview with Ann Morgan, who read and blogged about literature from nearly 200 countries, and then wrote a book about the experience.

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Several years ago, writer Ann Morgan noticed that she didn’t read much literature from countries outside of the United Kingdom and United States — and had yet to dive into stories from around the globe. From this realization, her blog, A Year of Reading the World, was born. You can read about Ann’s journey in her new book, Reading the World: Confessions of a Literary Explorer, available now in the UK. (The US version, The World Between Two Covers, will be released on May 4.)

I chatted with Ann about the blog-to-book journey and her experience of reading and blogging about literature from 197 countries.

For readers new to A Year of Reading the World, can you talk about your original project — and how the blog came about?

A comment someone left on a blog I wrote four years back, A Year of Reading Women

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A 100-Year-Old Person: The View from Kindergarten

What does a 100-year-old person look like? For their 100-day anniversary, kindergarteners were asked to come to school dressed as 100-year-olds. This Aged P. is a member of my family, but, as is obvious from our respective photographs, I am considerably younger than she.

My Valentine to Writing

I send a belated Valentine to writing. No grousing. Read it while you can, because I don’t know how long the warm fuzzies will last.

Austin Mystery Writers

Five members of Austin Mystery Writers post here regularly, and I sometimes wonder whether you readers know which of us is which. So I’m going to clear up any questions  concerning my identify.

I’m Kathy. I write about angst. Any time you arrive here to find weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth over the writing life, it’s my teeth you hear gnashing.

Kathy Kathy

I’m writing this at home, but home isn’t the only place I gnash. I do it at my office, AKA bookstore coffee shop, in full view of the public. I try to emote quietly, but muttering carries. People around me, many of them equipped with laptops and writing assignments of their own, receive full benefit of my outbursts: “Stupid, stupid, stupid!” “Noooo.” “What’s the word? What’s the word?” “^!*%&@% network.”

(I don’t really say ^!*%&@% , but that’s what I mean.)

I suspect other writers…

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Noir at the Bar on February 16, with Trey Barker, Bill Loehfelm, Lou Berney, & Jesse Sublett

Tomorrow night at Opal Devine’s–Noir at the Bar! Music and hard boiled stories. Scott Montgomery will read, MAYBE, he says, part of his story “RED’S WHITE F-150 BLUES,” which will appear in Austin Mystery Writers’ up-coming anthology, MURDER ON WHEELS.

Post by Scott M.

On Monday, February 16th, starting at 7 pm at Opal Divine’s, we are back for our first Austin Noir At The Bar for 2015. We have a range of talented authors who will be reading from their hard boiled work. Let Jesse Sublett’s murder ballads put you in the mood, endure my reading (indulge me, the 16th is my birthday), then hold on.

trey barkerTrey R. Barker is a Texas native, now working in Illinois law enforcement whenever he isn’t writing high octane noir. His books, examples includingExit Bloodand Death Is Not Forever, are greasy, 200 MPH, high body count hard boiled. Also an accomplished horror writer, he borrows from that genre to give a fever dream edge to his crime fiction.

20080813_Loehfelm_Bill Loehfelm migrated to New Orleans from Staten Island. He uses the backdrop of his adopted city for his series…

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Cascades, Water Balloons, and Tort Law: An Overview

I was sitting with friends yesterday evening, studying a menu, when our waiter tipped the tray he was carrying and poured ice water on me. Seven glasses full. Most went onto my lap. My slacks were sopping. That was the most invigorating experience I've had since the Director of the Tort Litigation Division of the largest law … Continue reading Cascades, Water Balloons, and Tort Law: An Overview

The Stand-Up

Jane Austen at a PUB? Yes!
Maddie Shrewsday, Kate’s fourteen-year-old daughter, speculates on what Jane did there.
Prepare to be enlightened. And to LAUGH.

Kate Shrewsday

Screen Shot 2015-02-02 at 19.02.11

She’s a stand-up, and she’s only 14.

So we’re driving down to Winchester on one of our Saturday afternoon jaunts, and I come off the soulless M3 motorway to take the old carriage way. The road the postal carriages would have taken to get post to the south and south west. The route the stagecoaches flew along moving visitors from one big house to the next.

And I am doing that thing mothers do where they repeat ad infinitum the litany of landmarks on a road; those that have personal significance (ah, that’s where our car broke down in 1989; that’s the Little Chef where I left my handbag and never went back to get it) and those which have a greater, more elevated place in history.

“Look, darling,” I gesture expansively over the steering wheel, “you see that pub?”

It is labelled ‘The Wheatsheaf’ and it’s a member of…

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Murder in Exotic Places

Austin Mystery Writer Elizabeth Buhmann shares murder mysteries set in India that ooze local color–and one cookbook to alleviate the cravings that reading them might bring on . . .

Austin Mystery Writers

Elizabeth BuhmannBy Elizabeth Buhmann

I love to read murder mysteries that are set somewhere in the world that I have never been. Let me hasten to say that I do not care for such mysteries when they’ve been written by someone who has also never been there, or who has not been there for more than a visit.

No, I want a book that oozes local color and a narrator who has clearly lived there, walked the streets every day and been part of the community. Sometimes it’s an ex-pat, sometimes a person sent there by a job (or a spouse’s job). Or it may be an English-speaking native, or the books may have been written in another language and translated into English.

The River Ganges, Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh, India The River Ganges, Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh, India

The author also needs to be a skillful and inventive mystery and suspense writer, so the kind of books I’m talking…

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Tresha Barger’s “It’s a Sign” Appears on Austin Public Library Facebook Page

Sisters in Crime ~ Heart of Texas Chapter and Austin Public Library partner to bring you Micro-Mystery Sunday!

Sisters in Crime

“It’s a Sign,” a micro-mystery by HoTxSinC’s Tresha Barger, appears on the Austin Public Library Facebook page at noon on Sunday, February 1, 2015: https://www.facebook.com/AustinLibrary

Lead-ins to the story are online at http://library.austintexas.gov/event/micro-mystery-sunday-apl%E2%80%99s-facebook-page-307405 and at https://www.facebook.com/AustinLibrary.

A micro-mystery written by a member of HoTxSinC will appear on the APL Facebook page each Sunday in February.

Micro-mysteries are being selected by former HoTxSinC member Kaye George. National bestselling author of the FAT CAT series, Kaye is also a Silver Falchion Finalist and a three-time Agatha Nominee.

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