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Read Watch Play Twitter Group – December : Endings

And so we come towards the end of the year. We hope you have enjoyed the reading themes for 2013. We’ll be letting you know about the 2014 themes very soon.

This months Twitter Reading Group meeting is on the earlier date of Tuesday 17 December. We’ll still be starting at 8pm Australian Eastern Standard Time. Use the tags #endread and #rwpchat as you discuss your last read.

Look out for the new group next year. Till then, take care.

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Read Watch Play 2013 – December : Endings

It is the end of the Read Watch Play year.  This is a time for looking forward, and a time for looking back.

BLUE MOUNTAINS IN REVIEW

It is also the time to think about #endread.  Does some reading make you think you will never reach the end of it (even when you are enjoying the journey).

What are your break up reads?  Do you read for Happily every after (HEA for those in the know)?  Do you like closure in an ending, or do you like lots of questions and endings which are open to speculation or with a lot of loose ends?  I know those kind of endings drive my book group crazy!  Do you think some endings are cop outs?  Do you read the last page first?

Do you read recipes because the story continues beyond the recipes, into your own adaption of the recipes?  Are there special recipes for the ending of the year? Any local favourites?

Are there never ending series (or nearly never ending series) which you enjoy? How about Sue Grafton‘s alphabet series about Kinsey Millhone? She’s coming to the end of the alphabet now.

What about end of the world writing?

Do you like game endings, or games without endings?

Any reflections on your reading, watching and playing for this year?

What do you think about adaptations, when the ending changes?

We hope you will join us in our #endread, and share your own #endread reading during.

There will be a twitter discussion from 8pm (AEST) on Tuesday 17 December to discuss #endread.  Use #endread and #rwpchat for the discussion. See you online then.

We will be back with more read, watch and play chat #rwpchat in 2014.

Destination Cambodia – and other awesome library events!

Walter&Vicki

Thanks to everyone who came along to hear Walter Mason on Saturday 16 November, 2013 at Katoomba Library. And special thanks to Walter for coming along and providing such an entertaining and insightful talk! Comments we received from audience members included:

•“A witty and profound speaker with unique insights into Cambodia. Great.”
•“Loved it! Ask him back…”
•“Very entertaining, and enlightening.”
•“Terrific – he is such a lovely person.”

If you missed it, we have some good news for you:
a) You can listen to the interview we recorded with Walter on our podcast, Listeners in the Mist.
b) We will definitely be getting Walter back to share with us again when he launches his next book.
c) We have some other amazing events coming up which you can still get to!

Starting with Jason Foster, author of The Dark Man: Australia’s First Serial Killer. Jason will be at Blaxland Library on Saturday 23 November, 2013 from 2pm.

The following week we have Poetry Under the Stars, at Katoomba Library on Friday 29 November, 2013 from 6pm. Be serenaded by choral group Canon Fodder, Christine Wheeler & Friends, and Neil Sagewood. And entertained by some of the best Blue Mountains poets, including Miles Merrill, Steven Herrick, Emma Brazil, Greg North, Sandy Holmes, Tez Mak, Jade Oldfield, and Craig Billingham.

In December, we will be holding a book launch for local author Coral Jocic at Katoomba Library. Come along on Saturday 7 December, 2013 at 2pm to hear about Coral’s book, A Journey Into Womanhood – a fictional coming-of-age story set in 1950s Australia.

Read Watch Play Twitter Reading Group – November : Moreads

Did you go sleek like Poirot or shaggy? Handlebar or ducktail? Friendly muttonchops or Soulpatch? There are so many #moreads to explore. I stuck with an old favourite, Poirot. His exploits get my little grey cells going without too much hard work.

Share with us by joining this month’s live twitter discussion next Tuesday 26 November starting at 8pm Australian Eastern Standard Time. Use the tags #moreads and #rwpchat as you discuss your hairy reading, watching and playing.

The Twitter book group meets on the last Tuesday of every month so pop that in your diary, smartphone, MS Outlook, or tattoo it on your arm. Just remember and join in!

Read Watch Play 2013 – Movember : Mo Reads

Hercule Poirot – a meticulous mo

There’s no getting away from it, this months theme is #moread in honour of Movember. The brainchild of 3 blokes drinking in a Melbourne bar in 2003, the campaign has raised over 175 million dollars for research, treatment and education programs for men’s health. During this month over 500,000 men will put their shavers aside in a sometimes vain and embarrassing attempt to grow a moustache. It’s an ugly time in any household, including my own.

Apart from a fortunately brief and minor resurgence in the late 1970’s the Victorian and Edwardian years of the 19th and early 20th Century was the golden age of the moustache for English language authors. Perhaps it’s appropriate that this month we remember some of the authors from that time who are now seldom read.

Mark Twain

Mark Twain was a giant of American literature and he had a moustache to match. His travel books were popular throughout his life including A Tramp Abroad and Life on the Mississippi but he made his name with The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn, much loved by generations of readers. An early science fiction novel, A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthurs Court and an historical fiction, Recollections of Joan of Arc stand out as departures from his normal style. Twain was a master at writing in a relaxed and humorous style with memorable characters. He also had a keen ear for natural and realistic language.

H G Wells

Across the Atlantic, HG Wells moustache wasn’t a patch on Twain’s but he was an enormously popular and prolific author in England before the Second World War. He’s remembered mostly for his early science-fiction novels including The Time Machine, War of the Worlds and The Invisible Man. Much is made of the number of modern technologies that he anticipated in his writings including the atomic bomb, space travel, genetic engineering and the mobile phone … but we’re still waiting for time travel, invisibility and alien invasion. Wells also wrote some fine social and comic novels of Edwardian middle-class England such as Kipps, Tono-Bungay and The History of Mr Polly. His later works pale in comparison but he is worth visiting again for his richly drawn characters and vibrant imagination.

Henry Lawson

Closer to home, Henry Lawson’s tash is in the same league as Mark Twain. Like Twain Lawson was a great chronicler of rural life, egalitarian in his outlook and a master of natural language. He never wrote a novel and even derided the short story in favour of “sketch stories”, short descriptive pieces with little plot. While the Billy Boils was his most popular prose collection.

David Malouf sporting his subtle mo

Other significant writers with moustaches from the era include Jerome K Jerome, James Joyce, Thomas Hardy, Rudyard Kipling, and Joseph Furphy. The moustache is still popular in many non-English language cultures where we can find examples of modern authors with moustaches such as Gunter Grass, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Derek Walcott and Carlos Fuentes. I believe David Malouf is the only significant current Australian novelist to regularly sport a moustache.

We hope you will join us in our #moread, and share your own reading during Movember.  There will be a twitter discussion from 8pm (AEST) on Tuesday 26 November to discuss #moread. See you online then. Use the tags #moread and #rwpchat so others can join the discussion with you.

Read Watch Play Twitter Reading Group – October : Egoread

This month, prompted by the #egoread theme, I thought I’d take myself back to the spring of 2006 and our ‘big’ family holiday to Britain, Cyprus and Athens. We took that holiday knowing it was likely to be the last family holiday with all members of the family together.  I bought a journal and intended for all the family to write about the trip as it happened so we had a shared memory. It all started well with each member of the family writing a little bit at Sydney airport but that was the last time anyone but me wrote anything. But I did write something every day and it was lovely to relive our holiday with the photos at my side and tickets and brochures in the journal to browse through.

Two memoirists I’ve also loved are the incomparable Aussie author Clive James and British blue-stocking Diana Athill. I’ve been dipping in and out of her collected memoirs for over a year now. Have you given them a go? What has been your #egoread this month?

Share with us by joining this month’s live twitter discussion next Tuesday 29 October starting at 8pm Australian Eastern Standard Time. Use the tags #egoread and #rwpchat as you discuss your furry reading, watching and playing.

The Twitter book group meets on the last Tuesday of every month so pop that in your diary, smartphone, MS Outlook, or tattoo it on your arm. Just remember and join in!

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