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Oh, I love this game!

Books I Reread A Lot, By Cupcake Goth, Age 42

- Dracula. Go on, look surprised.

- Something Wicked This Way Comes. One of foundations of my universe.

- The Vampire Lestat. Classic bombast, and I still find Lestat to be a charming devil.

- Anno Dracula. Still one of the best damn vampire books out there.

- Soulless. So much fun!

- Vampire Kisses: The Coffin Club. From my favorite spooky-sweet series, the installment set at a gothy club. With vampires.

I suppose Winnie The Pooh should go on that list, but it's not one I reread. It's read to me, in times of great emotional stress.
cupcake_goth: (GAFhat)
( May. 29th, 2011 10:18 pm)
- Thing One: I have found someplace that sells straw versions of my usual black wool top hat. I am thinking of getting one, covering it with black lace, and then I would finally have a summer version of my hat.

- Thing Two: We never managed to see Sucker Punch in the theatre, but thanks to a video that scrolled by on Tumblr, I spent part of today browsing YouTube so I could listen to the soundtrack. Which I then bought. A remix of Bjork's "Army of Me" with Skunk Anansi! The cover of "Sweet Dreams Are Made of This"! The cover of "Asleep"! This thing is full of bombastic/crazy girl fun.

- Thing Three: A sign of how stressful and scattered this year has been: I had no idea that book 8 of the Vampire Kisses series had been released! My favorite sugary dark reading indulgence! ::flailyhands::

- Thing Four: A picture Libby (from Exoskeleton Cabaret, you know, Libby Bulloff) took of me during yesterday's trip to the zoo.



- Thing Five: There have been some great non-supernatural Gothic fiction suggestions arriving in the GCS mailbox. Someone made the very good point that all of Anne Rice's recent books are about, well, Jesus. I'm betting her (overwrought, bombastic, but cracktastic fun) writing style hasn't changed that much, even if she isn't writing about vampires anymore. However, I will admit that the suggestion of Flowers In the Attic made me raise my eyebrows. Sure, there's no hint of supernatural in it, and it IS a modern take on classic Gothic novel tropes, but ... yeah. I don't know if I'd feel comfortable recommending it.

(I occasionally pick up copies of it at thrift stores, flip through them in a state of mesmerized horror, and then decide that I don't need to take the revisiting the trashy reading habits of my youth THAT far.)
Thanks to some shenanagins over on Twitter last night, I, um, now know what my next writing project is. So now my non-dayjob to-do list looks like this:

- Finish writing proposal for current fiction project. (TODAY, JILLIAN.)

- Send it and sample chapters to Agent of Awesome.

- Write new stuff for GCS.

- Write 5K of ridiculousness for that other possible project.

- Go go go on NEW new project, as the ideas for it are scurrying around your head and starting to bite you.

- Write more stuff for GCS.

Also, HOW MUCH do I covet this journal set on Etsy? (clicky-link!) Oh, lots. More than you might realize. Not because it's related to Titus Andronicus, but because of how it looks, and because it would be PERFECT for the NEW new project.

(I always have blank books that are specific to certain writing projects. The current fiction project has a Keep Calm and Have A Cupcake journal, the assorted silly steampunk stuff has a beautiful green & gold stamped journal, there's a big book of GCS notes, aaaaand ... yeah. That bloody notebook would be PERFECT. Curse this being solidly in debt to the house!)

---

Anyway, progress! My brain is starting to return, because I've been writing every night. Last night I worked on the book proposal, and then when I quit for the night to go take a bubble bath, I ended up spending most of the bath precariously balancing my Keep Calm and Have A Cupcake journal on the edge of the tub, because part of the story was jumping up and down and shrieking in my brain. So, progress. Yay.

---

REMINDER: I'll be at the Night Kitchen this Sunday night! Hijinks start around 8PM, please join us!
While we were at Dark Delicacies (and OH! do I wish there was a store like that here in Seattle!), one of the books I picked up was Ancestral Hungers by Scott Baker. (clicky-link to Amazon.) I rather wish I hadn't.

Here, let me show you what Library Journal had to say about it:

"When his career as a drug smuggler comes to an abrupt halt, David Bathory reluctantly returns to the claustrophobic family he has spent most of his life trying to escape. There he discovers the infernal heritage of his ancestors and realizes that, despite his best efforts, he must enter into a dark world of vampiric intrigue if he hopes to survive. The author's revision of his earlier novel Dhampire (1982) employs an amorphous mixture of Eastern and Western vampire legendry liberally dosed with scenes of graphic violence and explicit sex. Weak plotting and unlikable characters limit this novel's appeal to hard-core fans of blood and gore."

Y'know what? It's kind of boring to fans of blood and gore, too. I'm a fan of well-done splatterpunk horror, and this book is not that. The plot is weak; I can't tell if it's too convoluted to make sense or if it's just presented so poorly that any narrative logic is hidden. The characters are unlikable, not to mention barely realized; paper-thin and interchangeable are almost kind descriptions of them.

Silly me, it was the book I put in my carry-on to read on the flight home. I've got about ... 50 pages left to go, and I'm just not going to bother finishing it.

Oooh, maybe I should re-read that historical mystery with Edgar Allan Poe as the narrator, I liked that a lot ...
No, I'm not talking about my (only slightly bonkers) tendency to buy 1st edition hardbacks of Anne Rice books at thrift stores. I also collect copies of Dracula. (Go on, look surprised. I'll wait.) I've been trying to find a really battered paperback of it for a while now, for a project I have in mind. Have I been able to find any at the thrift stores lately? Ha, no.

So yesterday, I found a paperback copy with a tie-in cover for the Coppola movie. "Hey!" I say to myself, "I've already got a copy of this, so sacrificing this one for the craft project is a no-brainer! Easy!"

Except that the version I bought yesterday is not the same as the other Coppola movie tie-in I have. The previous one is the Official Movie Novelization. Yesterday's find is the actual novel of Dracula, but with a movie-themed cover and "8 pages of photos from the movie!".

(You see where this is going, don't you?)

I now find myself unwilling to sacrifice yesterday's find for the craft project. ::sigh::

(I also have a paperback with a tie-in cover for the Langella version of Dracula, with photos from that movie. Plus the Edward Gorey illustrated hardback, The Annotated Dracula, a smaller-than-paperback -sized hardback, and some abridged illustrated versions. Look, it's a thing, okay. I am incapable of passing up a copy of Dracula. STOP LOOKING AT ME LIKE THAT, IT'S PERFECTLY NORMAL.)

(I do the same thing with editions of Something Wicked This Way Comes. Someday I will be rewarded with finding a 1st edition of it at a thrift store. I cling to this dream.)
Having friends who are reading the Parasol Protectorate series tell me that they automatically picture me as Alexia Tarabotti. (I suspect I'm more of a combination of Alexia and Ivy, but hey. These same friends have said that they have no problem picturing The Husband as Conall, which makes me laugh and laugh. But they're not wrong, either.

Also, let's face it; the StuntHusband has been turning himself into Lord Akeldama for years.
cupcake_goth: (tidycliche)
( Aug. 30th, 2010 07:58 pm)
You know what the only downside to being able to read really quickly is? Then you have a long wait between books.

Blameless = delightful!

More spoilers )

Now that I've finished my headlong charge of OMG, MUST KEEP READING! MUST FIND OUT WHAT HAPPENS!, I can re-read the book at a more leisurely pace. As in tonight during bath time.
cupcake_goth: (tidycliche)
( Aug. 30th, 2010 06:48 pm)
I am now on page 224. Beware, spoilers behind the cut tag.

Bustles! )

Edited to add )

Page 329
Edited to add! )



So far, I have resisted all urges to skip to the end and Find Out What Happens. Now I go back to reading.
I was going to do a little writing, watch a movie, and change out the buttons on a jacket. Those plans, however have changed. Because my copy of Blameless by Gail Carriger has arrived.

Right now I am beset with a horrible temptation to spoil myself for the ending. I think such behavior is wrong, but ... auuugh! I want to know if Certain Situations will be resolved!

Willpower. I have it. Really.
cupcake_goth: (cupcake goth)
( Aug. 27th, 2010 02:08 pm)
- All of the packages from the clothing sale have now been mailed!

- Tonight is Going Dancing Night with the StuntHusband at NocNoc, and then (almost certainly) to Night Kitchen for late-night snacks. Will one of the DJs at the club play "Bad Romance" again, thus allowing the StuntHusband and myself to utterly confuse the hipsters on the dancefloor?

- I need to stop dragging my feet and look at the comments from my beta readers on the story I need to send off to Steampunk Tales.

- I also need to start writing the next GCS column.

- Oh, and work on the fiction project.

- I finished reading The Vampire Armand during last night's bath. Whooo, bombast and vampires! And my goodness, Armand is quite the cranky drama queen, isn't he? Should I start reading Violin or Merrick, or should I re-read [livejournal.com profile] gailcarriger's Changeless (again!) in prep for Blameless arriving next week?
Soooo, last night I started reading Dennis Wheatley's The Devil Rides Out. (I have very dim memories of the Hammer movie based off of it.)

I ... I don't know if I can keep reading it. YES, I know, it was written in 1934, and I understand that the social landscape was very different then. But good GOD, the casual and unthinking racism. Just ... wow. I nearly threw the book across the room last night, while I was reading at bath time.

I want to read it, because it's considered a classic of the supernatural/occult suspense genre. But I just don't know if I'll be able to keep at it. Which is a shame, because in terms of wacky occult and "Black Magick" stuff, Wheatley did his research, and the book could be all sorts of fun in a popcorn-reading sort of way.
Tags:
- Stroppy One: still sickly. And it has been pointed out to me that my continuing exhaustion, wooziness, and occasional chest-rattling cough might be, oh, signs of walking pneumonia. YES, I am making an appointment with my doctor.

- Work got busy. Argh!

- OH MY GOD I AM SO BEHIND ON WRITING.

What better time to ask for book requests? I am craving vaguely Victorian-ish AU or paranormal stuff. The books I find myself thinking of re-reading right now are [livejournal.com profile] gailcarriager's Parasol Protectorate series, Kim Newman's splendid Anno Dracula, or Libba Bray's Gemma Doyle trilogy. (I also love the Sorcery and Cecila books by Patricia C. Wrede and Caroline Stevermer, and the College of Magic books by Caroline Stevermer.)

So! Victorian-ish paranormal books. Any suggestions?
Tags:
cupcake_goth: (GAF)
( Apr. 13th, 2010 08:29 pm)
Sometimes eBay is a dangerous place. Because there you are, innocently toodling around with assorted keyword searches, and then next thing you know, you've purchased a collection of 21 paperback gothic novels.

What? Look, just file this under my same somewhat ridiculous weakness for bombastic metal bands and movies like the remake of The Phantom Of The Opera. Glorious, over-the-top, cheesetastic fun.

Besides, how could anyone resist a book called House Of Tombs with the teaser text of "Two beautiful women, a love-starved madman and a bizarre ritual murder ... Weregild Island's ghastly secret would soon be known only to history!"? C'mon! It'll be all sorts of delightful!
Open Graves, Open Minds: Vampires and the Undead in Modern Culture.

"I didn't want this to be a stuffy traditional conference, I wanted it to be exciting and inspire people to become interested in vampire fiction." Around 200 people have confirmed places so far, ranging from academics to people from book groups to students and media figures who are interested in recent vampire developments.

In a bid to make the most of that interest, George is launching, in September, what seems to be the world's first master's degree in vampire literature. "In the months I've been planning the conference I've fielded a huge number of inquiries from people all over the world who are interested in studying vampires, zombies and the undead at a higher level," she says. "I had the idea of offering the master's as a direct follow-up from the conference. I thought it was crucial to have a way of extending this burst of awareness." The best papers from the conference will be collected in a book, which will become a textbook for the MA students.


YES, I would love to attend that. And YES, getting a master's in vampire literature is something that really would want to do.
cupcake_goth: (tidycliche)
( Apr. 5th, 2010 03:46 pm)
I think I am Very Susceptible to changes in weather during the spring. I can think of no other reason for once again waking up with a sinus migraine that made me (1) feel exhausted even tho' I had gotten a very respectable amount of sleep over the weekend, and (2) made me again think longingly of self-trepanation. Anyway, I am working from home today. Which means much hot tea and snuggling with the kitties while editing tech docs.

Norwescon was ... Norwescon. I had a lovely time at my tea party (thank you to everyone who attended!), the panels were fun (if somewhat sparsely attended), and I got (quickly!) visit with people I hardly ever get to talk to. That was nice. However, going to Norwescon still feels like taking a time machine back to 1995, which is a little unnerving.

---

Congratulations to the various award nominees! Kij Johnson, Cherie Priest, and the Girl Genius crew have all been nominated for Hugos! Gail Carriger has been nominated for a Campbell! Splendid news, and I'm thrilled for all of them.

Oh, speaking of Gail Carriger: I finished Changeless (the second book in the Parasol Protectorate series) over the weekend, and AAAAAUUGGGH! I don't know if I will be able to last until September when the third book comes out. Changeless was just as fun as Soulless, and ended with a cliffhanger that left me making squeaky noises of dismay and impatience. ::twitch::


(As predicted, reading Changeless and watching Sherlock Holmes has left me craving more bustles. Go on, look surprised.)

---

This coming weekend! The celadon CD release party! The Faith & the Muse show! Oh, and I need to get a bunch of writing done. Busy, busy, busy.
So yes indeed, when I got home yesterday, there was a box containing the Sherlock Holmes blu-ray, the big Tim Burton Alice In Wonderland art book, and [livejournal.com profile] gailcarriger's new book Changeless. Yay! I had congratulated [livejournal.com profile] gailcarriger on Book Day in her LJ yesterday; she replied asking if there would be a photo of me holding her book, because she'd like to see that. How could I deny such a request?

Posted via LiveJournal.app.



Those of you who look at Tumblr feed (clicky-link!) may notice a slight similarity to my outfit today and an certain Etsy listing (clicky-link!) I posted yesterday. I still covet *that jabot, scarf, and cuff set, too.

EDITED TO ADD: Whoops! I almost forgot! I updated the Gothic Charm School Events! page (clicky-link!) with my Norwescon schedule, plus info about the celedon CD release party and the reading at the Night Kitchen!
cupcake_goth: (hiding)
( Mar. 30th, 2010 01:10 pm)
I cannot brain today. I'm not tired (thank goodness), but am extremely fuzzy-brained and lacking in attention span. Ah, the hormonal joys of being female.

But! I have a chocolate cupcake sitting on my desk (thanks to a going-away party for one of my co-workers), and the mail today will bring me [livejournal.com profile] gailcarriger's new book Changeless, the big art book for Tim Burton's Alice In Wonderland, AND the blu-ray of Sherlock Holmes. So there will be plenty of distracting things for me when I get home.*

Tonight, I must update the GCS Events page with info about my Norwescon schedule, the details for the celadon CD release party, and the reading at the Night Kitchen. I also need to work on the CD reviews for Toy-Box Trio and Faith and the Muse. Can I manage to do those things while watching Sherlock Holmes? Who knows. But I'm certainly going to try.



*Between Sherlock Holmes and Changeless, I am going to want to add EVEN MORE bustles, boots, and parasols to my wardrobe. I just know it.
Let me start this out by saying that Alice In Wonderland is one of my favorite books. I accumulate/collect copies of it and Through The Looking Glass, and they were some of the first books I downloaded to my iPhone. (Those, Dracula, and Something Wicked This Way Comes. I am nothing if not consistent.) Also, I am a huge fan of Tim Burton's visual aesthetic. It very closely matches my own. Not to mention that Beetlejuice is one of my favorite movies, and always will be.

With those statements out of the way: I ... don't have high hopes for the Tim Burton version of Alice In Wonderland. Oh, it will be full of eye candy. Of that I have NO doubt. But you see, yesterday's post brought my copy of the Visual Companion for the movie (which is a fancy name for a storybook with pictures from the movie), and, well. The story is pretty much what I expected, the usual sort of "save the kingdom/overthrow the wicked queen" thing, but with an overlay of Wonderland and Tim Burton.

(Also, a short digression about editing. RUNNING SPELL CHECK DOES NOT SUBSTITUTE FOR EDITING. Because I doubt that the "grizzly" moat around the Red Queen's castle is full of bears, and I also doubt that the White Rabbit is "always ringing his ears" as if they were bells. I'm fairly sure that the Disney company can afford editors, and my goodness, they really should have. The Visual Companion book is full of such EditingFail.)

Will I go see the movie? Of course! Don't be silly. I will almost certainly end up purchasing it on Blu-Ray, too. But it won't be for the sake of the story the movie is telling.

---

In Shallow Fashion Details news, I am wearing a headband with a bow today. I am trying to decide if I like it. (The Stroppy One does not particularly like it.) There probably will be a picture later, and you folks can tell me what you think of it.

This past weekend was good, filled with seeing people and Getting Stuff Done. If only the Getting Stuff Done part had included more writing accomplished, but oh well. I managed to finish one of the things that needed writing, and am now just waiting for some final feedback. ::nudges [livejournal.com profile] jaborwhalky gently::

(Oh dear, the deadline for the next Steampunk Tales is Sunday. Whoops! Guess I know what just got put in the top slot of the writing priority queue!)

Part of the problem is that I have this huge and enticing stack of new-to-me books to read:

(Yes, most of them are vampire-type books. Don't try to act shocked, you're fooling no one.)

So of course I am distracted from writing! But I think I'm going to have to re-institute the rule of only reading during bath-time, otherwise I will never get all the writing done that I need to.


---

[livejournal.com profile] trystbat mentioned wearing one of the MAC black lipsticks over a deep fuchsia pink color, thus achieving a nice black cherry effect. "Ooooh!" said I, and promptly started rummaging in my makeup stash to see if I had a deep fuchsia lipliner. I don't have quite the color I want, but did achieve a similar effect with a pinky-red lipliner under Midnight Media. I'm very tempted to see if there are any MAC counters near me that still have Black Night in stock, so I can swap 6 empty containers for a new lipstick. And then find a good fuchsia lipliner from Wn'W or NYX Cosmetics.


---

Skirts! So, remember me burbling about the Raven skirt by Morrigan? (clicky-link!) I was lucky enough to get one in black and silver! It is stunning; the detail of the screen-printing is astonishingly delicate, and the skirt construction is very well done. I can't wait for her to announce her winter line.

Posted via LiveJournal.app.

We went and saw Zombieland this afternoon. Wheeee! I loved it. I now have "For Whom The Bell Tolls" by Metallica stuck in my head, and I want a Twinkie. A note for the squeamish: this is a gory, blood-spattered movie. If you don't do well with gore, you might want to give this one a miss. I, on the other hand, cannot wait until I can own my own copy of it.

Clicky-links!

If you wander over to the blog of Miss K of Aromaleigh, you can read all about how you can donate to a worthy cause AND get eye shadow custom-made for you. I think it's a great cause AND a tempting incentive. (I chose the school asking for books as my donation recipient, because books! Everyone needs books!)

The Victorian Dress-Up Doll for the novel Soulless! I love these sorts of online paper dolls (okay, I love paper dolls in general), and the fact that it's for one of my favorite new books is a bonus. (I'm also a smidge envious and coveting, because it's been a long-cherished dream of mine to eventually do some sort of Gothic Charm School paper doll thing. Someday, someday ...)

The Raven skirt from MorriganNYC. I covet this skirt SO MUCH. I'm waiting to hear back from them to find out if they have any of the black with silver print left in stock. I need to find someone who is capable of doing finely-detailed screen printing and talk over some ideas with them. But until I do, I'm going to be keeping a close eye on the offerings from MorriganNYC, yes indeed.
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