Category: Writing

How to Write a Best Seller

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Featured image via Sable Books

Will Birds of Prey Soar at the Box Office?

Sometimes, I’m excited for Birds of Prey And (the Fabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) and other times I’m not. The trailers show the new Gotham DC is creating, and it looks fantastic. Although reminiscent of Suicide Squad it has a newer, brighter style. With the pinks and yellows and the fashion. Harley Quinn especially looks great with her clear jacket and funky sleeves.

Image via Screen Rant

But I’m afraid that the style of the movie will be all it offers. Harley Quinn is a CHARACTER, so you need a world to match. Around Harley, you introduce other interesting characters like Black Canary and Huntress who are getting their big screen debuts and who can easily fit into Harley’s world.

But that was one of the reasons why Suicide Squad fell flat for me. It focused on all the wrong things. With the heavy stylized editing, we meet each character but we don’t get to really know any of them. Sure Deadshot has a kid he wants to see, Harley is love with the Joker, Diablo killed his entire family by accident, Katana’s sword stores the souls who are killed by it including her husband’s, but some of the others like Killer Croc and Captain Boomerang don’t characterization at all. We learn these facts like we are reading cliff notes before a test in the morning. We are supposed to follow these characters through the entire movie we have to see genuine growth.

 

 

There are a lot fewer characters in Birds of Prey so hopefully, this won’t be much of a problem. But I am still worried that there won’t be a lot of chemistry between them. In Suicide Squad they were forced to be together and by the end, it didn’t seem believable that they actually liked each other let alone that they felt like family. In the new movie, Harley gathers them as a team and again since there are fewer of them we might actually get to know them instead of their plot point important right then.

Obviously we don’t need to know everything about them but it’s presenting itself as a character-driven story. So we have to know more. And in trying to show off each character the actual plot of movie was lost. The Enchantress and her brother wanted to take over the planet which is a generic story beat we’ve seen but it doesn’t add anything to it to make seem new. The antagonists have no qualities but they are bad because the story needs them to be.

Image via Ain’t It Cool News

I really do enjoy the idea of Birds of Prey, it’s scaled-down so we are only focusing on Gotham and the heroes and villains in the city. People are coming after Harley after her split with the Joker, simple. Other women are going through the same thing so they team up to solve all there problems, love it. There aren’t any world-ending plots or portals in the sky just a simple story. I have hope so we will see when it comes to theaters this February.

 

 

 

Featured Image via Screen Rant

 

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Literary Icons We Lost in the Last Decade

The 2010’s have been a notable decade for literature lovers. Starting with big corporate bookstores going out of business and making room for the indie bookstores, we also saw the rise of audio-books, as well as platform being given to strong female protagonists with books like, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, Gone Girl , The Girl on the Train and so on. But in the past ten years we’ve also lost a number of prolific icons from the literary world and here are some of those authors and poets who have touched our lives with their iconic works, which will continue to influence us and the generations to come.

J D Salinger

Image Via Independent

We’ve all read his famous book in high school, The Catcher in the Rye, which is a fantastic piece of work tackling many pressing issues such as identity, loss, and sex. Salinger also exhibits relentless talent in his short stories, such as in A Perfect Day for Banana Fish. The writer lived until the long age of 91, and breathed his last on January 27, 2010.

 

 

Maurice Sendak

Image Via PBS

Even if you can’t immediately recognize this talented author by his name, I’m certain we are all familiar with his famous book, Where The Wild Things Are, which is a celebrated children’s picture book, teaching kids about imagination, independence and overcoming fear. The author/illustrator left us on the 8th of May in 2012.

 

V.s naipaul

Image Via BBC

Nobel Laureate and Booker Prize winner, V. S Naipaul left the world on 11th August, 2018. His book In a Free State won him the Booker Prize and he was also awarded the Trinity Cross in 1990, and was also made a Knight Bachelor in 1990.

 

 

maya angelou

Image Via Read it Forward

It was a tragic day when the world lost literary legend Maya Angelou. Not only was she a prolific, talented poet, singer and memoirist, she was also a famous civil rights activist, and was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2011. Her book of poems, Just Give Me a Cool Drink of Water ‘fore I Diiie won the Pulitzer Prize and her autobiographical book, I Know Why the Caged Birds Sing, garnered much critical acclaims and went on to be made into a TV movie with the same name in April 1979. Her departure was a great loss for the entire world, but her legacy will continue to live on within her works.

 

stan lee

Image Via Esquire

On November 12, 2018, we bid farewell to the creator of The Amazing Spider-man, X-Men and all the other Marvel heroes who continue to dominate our lives since we were children. This man’s legacy cannot be put in words, as movies after movies continue to wow us with the foundations Stan Lee had built during his long standing career. When he passed at the ripe age of 95, it was when we thanked our stars for being born during his era, to enjoy the fruits of his creativity.

 

 

william goldman

Image Via Consequence

This remarkable American novelist, playwright and screenwriter left us on November 16, 2018. By the end of his career, William Goldman had received his first Academy Award for Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid and another for All the President’s Men. He also won two Edgar Awards, and was eventually given the Laurel Award for Screenwriting Achievement in 1985. But perhaps his most notable work is The Princess Bride, the popular fantasy-romance novel which came out in 1973, and was adapted into a movie of the same name in 1987.

 

 

fred bass

Image Via New York Post

While not everyone recognizes Fred Bass without a quick Google search, but be sure to know that this man has changed the lives of millions with his contribution to the book industry. Bass left us on January 3, 2018, but he made sure to leave the world a little more educated and tons more curious, with his creation of The Strand Bookstore in New York City. As one of the most popular bookstores in the world, with its eighteen miles of books, Strand has not just become a common household name for New Yorkers, but has won hearts of people all from over the world, all thanks to this kind and intelligent soul.

 

anthony bourdain

Image Via Robb Report

Although we mostly know Anthony Bourdain from his popular TV shows and his celebrity chef status, but we can’t forget that he first emerged as a writer in the late 90’s when his column came out in The New Yorker, Don’t Eat Before Reading This. This later resulted in Bourdain’s first book, Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly, followed by his second, Medium Raw: A Bloody Valentine to the World of Food and the People Who Cook, which was published in 2010. His demise was certainly a tragic one, leaving his fans in utter pain and disbelief, but his perception regarding the exploration of international cuisine, culture and human conditions has taught us all a few great things about not being scared of the unknown.

 

 

harper lee

Image Via ABC

To Kill a Mockingbird is an American Classic, and Harper Lee was a legend for the creation of such an impactful book during a time of turmoil and distress in the Americas. Her revolutionary vision, through the eyes of the young protagonist of her book, is evident and speaks volumes about her life as a child growing up during the Great Depression in the South, exploring topics such as regionalism as well as racism. The book has garnered her several awards, including the Pulitzer Prize in 1961, as well as awarding her with the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2007, which was very well deserved. The world lost a power-house figure on February 19, 2016.

 

 

ursala k le guin

Image Via Syfy Wire

Ursala K Le Guin had written over twenty novels and one hundred short stories, spanning a literary career for almost sixty years before her passing on January 22, 2018. She had won eight Hugo Awards and six Nebula Awards, making her one of the most influential Science Fiction writers of our time, and that too as a woman, considering that science has always been a supposed male dominated field. Legends like her give us hopes to break barriers and march on.

 

toni morrison

Image Via Newsday

The beloved Toni Morrison, author of the Pulitzer Prize winning novel, Beloved, left a gaping hole in the literary world as she left us on August 5, 2019. She gained further recognition as she won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1993. She was also the first African American female editor at Random House in New York in the 1960’s. During her lifetime, she has inspired many people of all color to break free of stereotypes and to live their truth, whatever that may be. Her writing is so influential that her fan base continues to grow since her departure. Her writing has been critiqued by notable editors and writers alike and to this day, it is praised for its daring narrative. If there should be a legendary writer, Toni Morrison is deserving of that title.

 

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Let Thug Notes Help You With the Most Boring Books

Classical Literature. Original Gangster. 

 

Ever read books in the literary canon and think YAWN? Well, move over SparkNotes, there’s a new and improved way to get the gist of these novels without falling asleep. Whether for class or to be prepared for snooty dinner conversations, Thug Notes A.K.A. Sparky Sweets PhD will have you set to debate and engage in conversations and discussions about novels in the literary canon without having to turn a page.

 

 

What are the top 5 most boring works of classical literature? According to high school students these 5 books make the list and here are the Thug Notes to have you in the know and not have you catching zzzz’s.

 

 

5. Lord of the Flies by William Golding

 

 

Little surprise here that Lord of the Flies made the list. After the Hunger Games gave a strong showing in the box office there’s not much need for the old fogie version although still a great work of literature, just not always fun to plow through.

 

4. The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger

 

 

And if you haven’t read Perks of Being a Wallflower yet, might I recommend this in place of The Catcher in The Rye. Lots of similarities less Holden to get on your nerves.

 

 

 

3. The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne

 

 

Emma Stone did a pretty decent number in Easy A to give us the general idea but for a more comprehensive summary Thug Notes breaks down The Scarlet Letter to fill in any contemporary gaps.

 

2. Great Expectations by Charles Dickens

 

 

For dry eyes, Great Expectations can really cause the blinks with its length and wordiness. But have no fear, Sparky Sweets will break down all 544 pages.

 

 

 

1.To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee

 

 

Coming in at first place with its hearty racism and N-bombs, is To Kill A Mockingbird. We’ve all been subjected to studying this book in school and many of us get more out of the one unit on Brown vs. Board of Ed in Social Studies class. Ruby Bridges makes for a stronger protagonist anyway.

 

featured image via Sjuiceonline

 

 

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Bestsellers of the Decade: In Every “Shade” Of Color

The end of the decade is upon us, people. We’ve read good books and we’ve read bad and surprisingly they are all on this list. So here is the top ten list for the bestsellers of the decade according to The NPD group.

 

 

1, 2, and 3 : Fifty Shade of Grey Series

 

Image via Today Show

 

Your eyes do not deceive you folks. The entire original Fifty Shades of Grey Series holds the top three spots on the top sellers list. This infamous fan fiction series author E.L. James wrote sits pretty, having sold nearly 35 million books including physical and e-book copies.

 

 

4: The Hunger Games

 

Image via Target

The first book in The Hunger Games series written by Susan Collins sold 8.7 million copies. In the height to the dystopian novel with teens, this series was the one to read.

 

 

5. The Help 

Image via Amazon

One of the best books on this list, in my opinion, written by Kathryn Stockett, The Help sold 8.7 million copies. This book is heavy, dealing with topics like racism. Even though we learn the plight of black maids, this book is filled with humor and hope.

 

 

6. The Girl on the Train

 

Image via Peonies and Pancakes

Written by Paula Hawkins, it sold 8.2 million copies. If you haven’t read this book yet, this mystery will keep you guessing. It’s about past love and betrayal but more importantly, MURDER.

 

 

7. Gone Girl

 

Image via Target

Written by Gillian Flynn sold 8.1 million copies. This is a book about a marriage going downhill and wife playing a sick, yet incredibly smart game with her husband who is unaware of it intrigues you, this one has a pretty great reputation.

 

 

8. The Fault in Our Stars

 

Image via Impression Blend

Written by John Green sold 8 million copies. This sweet yet so sad book follows a young couple who both struggle with cancer. You WILL need tissues.

 

 

9. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

 

Image via Amazon

Written by Stieg Larsson sold 7.9 million copies.  Doesn’t everyone love a good revenge story? You’ve got one right here.

 

 

10. Divergent

 

Image via Amazon

Written by Veronica Roth, it sold 6.6 million copies. Another dystopian teen read that will surely give your imagination something to gnaw on.

 

 

Featured Image via ABC 7 San Fransisco 

 

 


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