Monthly Archives: June 2011

Song Inspiration vol. 70 & Writing Exercise

The Low Anthem – “Don’t Tremble”

“If your heart is unemployed, do not rush, but do not stall, ’cause I’ll be waiting…I’ll be waiting.”

Writing Exercise: Write something that involves the line (my favourite) from the song posted above.


I need to write something! “Love Vigilantes” it is!

Just had a revelation today (not really a revelation but something akin to one), that I need to write something new. I need to bury myself in something and write and create and feel like I’m doing something worth something, even if it’s only to and for me.  It’s been welling up inside of me and now I think I will look at all my notes and piece them together this week and start on Love Vigilantes next week with a 1st draft completion date of August 31st. If I write everyday and make it to my self-imposed minimum daily word count of 1500, then I should have a weighty 90,000 or so words by the end of summer. Sweet. Looking forward to it. I”ll keep you updated. 🙂

“This Is Where I Leave You” by Jonathan Tropper

This Is Where I Leave You, by Jonathan Tropper, follows the story of Judd Foxman and his family as they gather to sit shiva for their father who has recently passed away. And that being said, here’s what I thought:

Why I liked it:

-I could identify Judd and his moments of hopeful daydreaming about women he sees randomly out and about and his other moments where he lets the reality of his situation (his wife left him for his boss) crush him and his positive, hopeful moments. This is not as extreme as it sounds, but Tropper does a good job of highlighting the duality of men and, well, people in general, and how they deal with emotional situations (not in a bi-polar way).I will talk about this, or something related to it, in another post.

-I found the characters well developed in a way where I will miss having them as a part of my life. I believe I’ve talked about this before. I know I like a book when I think about having finished it and realizing, “hey, I’m going to miss these people and their crazy, f*cked up lives”. Also, they were well developed in the “well developed” way, i.e: you can picture them, you know people like them, you understand why they act the way they act and are the way they are.

-Without giving too much away, Tropper goes overboard when he needs to with respect to Jen’s (Judd’s wife’s) infidelity. When I was reading this part I loved it because it was hilarious, but I found myself asking, ahem, myself, “is all this detail necessary?”. It was and is, because that’s who Judd is and Judd is telling us his and the story.

-Tropper stayed away, or at least an arm’s length, from too many cliches. While there are your expected ones that come with any story of a family returning to their hometown for a funeral, Tropper twisted them enough so that he kept me guessing until the end as to how things were going to turn out.

What I “didn’t” like:

-Again, without giving too much away, the end is somewhat of a sticking point for me. I liked it but I think it it could have been better. It doesn’t end abruptly, but I felt Tropper could have gone further. The perfect contrast is David Nicholls’, One Day, where I felt he added maybe one too many chapters at the end. But, both still ended and well enough that I enjoyed them.

-Tropper stayed away, or at least an arm’s length, from too many cliches. I know I wrote the exact same thing in the “like” part, but come one, everyone likes a little cliche here and there. Or maybe not, but I do, so whatever.


Song Inspiration vol.69 & Writing Exercise

The Vaccines – “Post Break-Up Sex”

Writing Exercise: Write about a couple and tell us how (and maybe why) their post break-up sex, with each other and/or other people, goes awry.

Song Inspiration vol.68 & Writing Exercise

Cobra Skulls – “Back to the Youth”

Writing Exercise: Write about a character who has both fond memories and furious regrets about the concerts he/she attended in his/her youth.

Updated Pages

So I’ve updated and added some new pages up above. Check ’em if you so desire and thanks ahead of time for doing so.

“Seen Reading” Blog

Just read about this in The Grid.

It’s a blog about what Julie Wilson has seen people reading in Toronto.

I like it. You should check it out.

Seen Reading Blog

Also check out this other blog of literary voyeurs that Julie administrates: The Literary Voyeurs

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