As you must have realized by now, I am only partially in favor of blogs being a two-way flow of information exchange. That is, I’m thrilled when people comment on my posts and am mostly willing to read and comment back, but this particular blog is focused on one thing – getting yuri manga and anime fans to buy anime and manga through the Yuricon Shop, or getting you onto the Yuricon Mailing List by sharing with you all the great yuri I can. (I think it’s fairly obvious, but my apologies if you thought I had some noble intent. I’m just trying to make enough to support me being able to put out more yuri manga through ALC Publishing. Your purchases through the Shop, especially of ALC publications, go a long way to achieving that goal.)
So you may have noticed that all the links on the sidebar are focused on, well, me. Yuricon, the Shop, my fanfic page, my fan club. I have no links out to non-me related sites, except where it still focuses your interest back into “me” spaces, like the tags, or syndicating Okazu. This is all highly ironic to me since, of all the things that are important about Yuricon, “me” isn’t really one of them – but if it keeps you all funneled into the “yuri” channel, I’m not above it. I have very little pride. :-)
What, exactly, is the point of this self-obsessed rubbish? you are probably asking. Nothing, except that I’ve been tagged by my friend Lee Kottner, whose Blogorrhea Junior is something that I read – because it’s interesting. So for a moment, I’m breaking form and perpetuating a book meme originated elsewhere, for no other reason than because I was tagged and am now “it”.
That, for those of you expecting a point, was it. :-)
Please read Lee’s comments about the limitations of this meme, because all I have to say about those comments is “word.”
1. One book that changed your life?
Like most readers, especially young readers, my life is filled with books that were life-changing. And is there anything more scrunchy-face-making in the whole world than other people’s seminal books? LOL
Just one book? Just *one*?
How do I render my life into one single moment, when everything went “pop”? My shelves are full of my seminal books. The books that set off lights and bells and whistles in my brain – that STILL do.
But because it doesn’t fit into any other category in this meme, I will choose The White Goddess by Robert Graves. This “historical grammar of poetic myth” is brain-bustingly insane – and quite briliant. Most people hate it, but I thought – and still think – I understand what Graves was doing, by taking mythic images and qabalistically reinterpreting them. It’s not history – it’s not literature – it’s mythopoeisis. And it’s amazing. Reading this book was the first time in my life that I felt that several of my areas of interest were colliding for a reason – and that there was both rhyme and rhythm to my life. I had never considered that before that moment – and I’ve never doubted it since.
2. One book you have read more than once?
Hah. Which ones haven’t I read more than once? To be read many times is practically the definition of being a book on my book shelves.
Like Lee, I used to (with almost religious fervor) read The Lord of the Rings annually, but for me it was always in the autumn, to be begun around Frodo and Bilbo’s birthdays. Geeky? Yes. I have no regrets. Another seminal book for me.
The Seven Pillars of Wisdom by T.E. Lawrence, which oddly, reappeared in my life *this very week* in an article from a military history magazine, and which I will no doubt take off the shelf to re-read again soon.
3. One book you would want on a desert island?
The above-mentioned Seven Pillars, definitely. Of course I’ll need to bring along all the source material too, so it’ll have to be a big case and include all the Greek and Latin classics in the original. I figure I’ll have plenty of time to learn the languages.
Also Foucault’s Pendulum, by Umberto Eco. I love this book, not least because I know people in every single weird occult group he mentions. :-)
4. One book that made you laugh?
This one has me stumped. I can’t think of too many books that make me laugh out loud. Focault’s definitely made me laugh, especially in the bit about numerology, which was brilliance.
My own Shoujoai ni Bouken has made me laugh, honestly. That’s why I figure it doesn’t suck too bad. :-)
Of the books that live on my shelves, I guess I’m going to have to go with Flaming Iguanas by Erika Lopez .
5. One book that made you cry.
You mean, other than the fact that I get choked up every time when I read the bit in LotR where Rohan comes riding down out of the mountains to the war in Gondor?
The one book that really made me all out cry – and frankly I’ve never forgiven her for it – was The Color Purple by Alice Walker. I don’t really like crying – and I do NOT believe in “a good cry.” Nonetheless, this book was amazingly well-written and worth reading.
6. One book you wish had been written?
Just about everything I’ve ever written was because no one else was writing it…. ;-)
So, I guess I’ll say the Girl’s History of Yuri, in which I figure as a foremother of the enduring popular genre. LOL
6a. (Lee added this one for aspiring authors) One book by someone else you wish you had written.
Kitchen by Banana Yoshimoto. For years that was my default “Oh my god, now *this* is good writing” example.
7. One book you wish had never been written?
Adam Smith’s The Wealth of Nations. It’s a long story, but suffice to say that I deeply and personally loathe that book.
8. One book you are currently reading?
Maria-sama ga Miteru: Ready, Go! by Konno Oyuki in the original Japanese. I toyed with saying that I wish I had written the Marimite series,, but I think I’m happier being able to read them. The more I read these books, the more I honestly believe that Konno is an absolutely brilliant writer. The novel may be light reading, but the author is no lightweight.
9. One book you have been meaning to read?
You know, I don’t have that pile anymore. I used to have a zillion books I was “meaning to get to” but now I either read a book or I don’t.
Okay, that’s not true -I have a whole pile of Maria-sama ga Miteru novels to read yet, and then the R.O.D novels, then Bakuretsu Tenshi, but that’s not me meaning to read them, so much as, I’ll get there when I get there. :-)
10. Now tag five people.
Sean, Alan (who is one of the very few people on this planet who can recommend books to me), Ed, Meryl (neither of whom read Okazu) and Pattie. Other than Sean, I don’t expect anyone will ever see this post, so “you’re it” probably won’t work. :-) Nonetheless, I’ll email them and invite them – and you, dear reader – to reply with YOUR responses here in the comments section.