Monday, August 23, 2010

41 Quirky Questions for Readers

This questionnaire has made its way around the book blogs I follow. It originated with 55 quirky questions over at the Literary Lollipop, but I cut mine down a little.

1. Favorite childhood book: The Berenstain Bears. When I was in 3rd grade, the librarian forbid me to take out any more of those books because she wanted me reading chapter books instead.

2. What are you reading right now? I just finished Hunger Games and Catching Fire this weekend. I was probably the last book blogger left who hadn't read the series by Suzanne Collins. But I'm all caught up now, and ready for Mockingjay on Tuesday. I'm also reading an urban Christian fiction book called Secrets and Lies by Rhonda McKnight.

3. What books do you have on request at the library? I don't have any books on request at the library (see question 4).

4. Bad book habit: I can't believe I'm gonna admit this in public...but I carry outrageous library fines. I probably owe in excess of $100 right now. What happens is I take out a stack of books then hold onto 'em for months and months until I finish. When I finally get around to returning them, I pay off my fines and then the cycle starts all over again. I live in fear that one day they'll turn me over to a collections agency.

5. What do you currently have checked out at the library? I have a book in my car right now called Writing Dialogue by Tom Chiarella, but it's- ahem- several months overdue.

6. Do you have an e-reader? I have an iPhone with both the Kindle and Nook apps on it.

7. Do you prefer to read one book at a time, or several at once? I prefer to read one at a time, but these days I seem to have 2-3 going at once.

8. Have your reading habits changed since starting a blog? I definitely didn't read more than one book at a time before blogging. Other than that, I'm reading more now. Which is good for me, because I think good writers need to be prolific readers. So I'm reading for enjoyment, but I also consider it part of studying the craft.

9.Least favorite book you read this year: Out of respect for the author, I will refrain from answering.

10. Favorite book you've read this year: Since May, I've blabbed all about the books I love on this blog. Check out the five couple reviews for my favorites. But I've also loved some books that I didn't review. I read Lost in Nash Vegas and Diva Nash Vegas by Rachel Hauck this year and they were both delicious. If I had reviewed them, they would have been five couples all the way. I need to mention her name around here more often, because she's an awesome author.

11. How often do you read out of your comfort zone? If I had to guess, I'd say every other month I'll grab something out of my comfort zone.

12. What is your reading comfort zone? My favorite genre is Christian romance. But I'll consider bestsellers in genres outside of that comfort zone. For example, Hunger Games is a mainstream YA bestseller.

13. Favorite place to read: In a deck chair on a cruise ship? But most days my bed will do.

14. Do you dog ear your books? Oh yeah, so I can come back to the juicy parts.

15. Do you write notes in the margins of your books? Only when I'm studying the book. I highlight writing craft books all the time. And occasionally I do it in novels when I want to analyze the author's technique (like how much back story she includes in chapter one, or how many adjectives she got away with).

16. Do you break/crack the spine of your books? Never.

17. What is your favorite language to read? English is the only language I read, unless you count when I read Le Petit Prince in high school French class.

18. What makes you love a book? The romance!

19. What will inspire you to recommend a book? If I'd rather read it than go to sleep.

20. Genre you rarely read (but wish you did): The classics. I read them all the time in college. Back then it was important to me to be well read. These days, I just want quick entertainment. Does that make me shallow? I feel a little guilty about not reading the classics anymore.

21. Favorite Biography: Night by Elie Wiesel, which is technically an autobiography.

22. Have you ever read a self-help book? (And, was it actually helpful?) I've read tons of books on organizing and de-cluttering. But as I type this, I'm laying in my unmade bed and there's a coat, a stack of semi folded laundry, my purse, and a couple of baseball caps on the bed with me. You be the judge.

23. Favorite Cookbook: I don't have much use for those. My husband does all the cooking in our house. He's pretty darn good at it too.

24. Favorite reading snack: chocolate

25. Name a case in which hype ruined your reading experience: The Catcher in the Rye. Back when I was reading the classics, I picked this up and I didn't understand what all the hype was about.

26. How do you feel about giving bad/negative reviews? Before I started writing, I had no problems with giving bad reviews. Now, I can't help but think about how I'd feel if someone trashed my hard work. So my policy at this point is to email the author, let her know the novel didn't connect with me and let her choose between me writing a negative review or not reviewing it at all. It's an awkward conversation though, so I try really hard to pick books I'm sure I'll enjoy.

27. Most intimidating book I’ve read: The Bible, not because it's scary or hard to read. But because you can never really finish reading it, there's always more to discover. You can read it your whole life and never be done.

28. Favorite Poet: Shel Silverstein (I teach elementary school).

29. Favorite fictional characters: The ones I create myself.

30. Favorite fictional villain: There will never be a better villain than Benjamin Linus from Lost.

31. Books I’m most likely to bring on vacation: I always try to find books set in the location I'm visiting. I'm a little dorky like that.

32. The longest I’ve gone without reading: Years. After I gave birth to the twins, I didn't read anything at all until they were in preschool.

33. Name a book you could/would not finish: Outlander by Diana Gabaldon. I have the whole series sitting here waiting for me, but 450 pages into number one, I lost interest in the story. I will finish it, eventually. I want to finish it. Everyone I know raves about it. It just seems like such a huge time commitment right now.

34. What distracts you easily when you’re reading? Not much. I mean, if there's blood I might look up....or if the boys are playing with matches.

35. Favorite film adaptation of a novel: The Hallmark Channel's adaptation of Love Comes Softly starring Kathryn Heigl was awesome.

36. Most disappointing film adaptation: I don't think the Left Behind movies starring Kirk Cameron did the books justice.

37. How often do you skim a book before reading it? Never. I don't want to know what happens until I get there.

38. What would cause you to stop reading a book halfway through? Bad theology in a Christian fiction book. Yeah, I know it's only fiction, but some things are too sacred to me to play with.

39. Are there any books that you’ve been avoiding? The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch. A friend lent me this book last year and I've been wanting to read it, but the thought of my kids ever growing up without a parent is so heartbreaking, I don't know if I'll be able to get through his story without crying and getting depressed.

40. A book I didn’t expect to like but did: The Harry Potter series. When it first came out, I read it to see what all the fuss was about. I ended up being one of those people waiting at the door of the bookstore for the next release.

41. A book I expected to like but didn’t: The Shack

What say you, fellow bookworms? Have you answered these questions on your blog? Leave a link so I can read all about your quirks.


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