Sunday, November 23, 2008

when will the sun rise?

I just got back from seeing Twilight again, this time with a different friend. It was even better than the first time! :)

Friday, November 21, 2008

twilight: the movie

The stereotypical crowds of screaming teenage fangirls have always been just that to me-- a stereotype-- and while I've heard about it and joked about it, I'd never actually experienced it... until tonight.

As my friend and I walked into the movie theater tonight, Twilight tickets in hand, the first thing I spotted were the signs posted everywhere that read, "6:30pm showing of Twilight is SOLD OUT." The second thing I saw was the line. We'd arrived well in advance, but the line was already there and forming rapidly. The third thing I noticed was that nearly all of the line consisted of teenage girls, many of them wearing the famous Twilight t-shirts I keep hearing about. My friend and I were among the oldest in the crowd. "Hmm, I think this is a teenager movie," I remarked (laughing) to my companion, who has not read the books. One girl in front of me asked me if I'd bought my tickets online. I said, "No, I bought them here." She was shocked. Of course, I bought them two weeks ago... I'd had a feeling that there'd be a mob.

When they finally let us into the theater, the mob in question reacted predictably. There was much elbowing, shoving, and even some running as girls surged forward to claim the best seats. I grabbed my friend's hand so that we wouldn't get separated, and ran with the crowd. We got ourselves pretty good seats, and settled in to wait through the inevitable commercials and previews. As the movie began, the crowd cheered and clapped excitedly. (They continued to do this during all key points of the movie, except one.) The only thing the screaming fangirls missed was that during the scene in the baseball clearing, the song that plays is "Supermassive Black Hole" by Muse, which is the band that inspired Stephenie Meyer while she was writing the Twilight Saga. During that part, I was the only one who was excited. :)

I won't give you the details, but my analysis of the movie was this: not as good as the book (of course), not at all scary or dark (I'd watch it a thousand times before The Dark Knight), and very corny. (Go ahead, Twi-hards, throw your tomatoes. Or apples. See if I care.) I enjoyed it very much, though I liked the books much more. If you liked the books, go see it... I won't spoil your fun. :D

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

musings and music

I really need a new book to read. Anybody got any suggestions? I finished my last book on Monday and I haven't found anything new that really grabbed my attention... for me this means a crisis is on hand, I should have finished two more by now! Haha...

I've been in a weird mood lately though. I'm currently listening to a whiny British rock band called Muse (Stephenie Meyer's writing inspiration), and I kinda like their album 'Black Holes and Revelations.' It doesn't really do anything for me in terms of writing inspiration, though; mostly it's just background noise.

Monday, November 17, 2008

I don't normally go for poetry, but...

I saw this poem on a bookmark, and liked it so much I just had to post it. Enjoy!

If books are spice
And baking powder
And I,
Eggs, milk and flour
I fold into
A buttery scene
Creamed with plot
Laced with theme
Mixed with fact
And story wild
Baked into
A bibliophile
Rising high
A scrumptious,

-Pam Munoz Ryan

Friday, November 14, 2008

Of Werewolves and Vampires...

I've just finished re-reading the Twilight Saga by Stephenie Meyer. It was my second time through the series, so I took my time on it. (For me, this means it took me about a week to get through all four books.) I'm still not exactly sure how I feel about the series as a whole. While I enjoyed the overall story, there's a lot of underlying content that gave me a lot to think about. (For more on this subject, see the article at

I was shopping with my mom yesterday at Barnes and Noble-- a rare treat-- and while browsing, I ended up in the teen section. I figured maybe I could get some ideas for something lighthearted to read in between book series. However, 'lighthearted' was NOT what I would call the selection I found. Of course, most of the books for teens are almost guaranteed to be angsty hormone-driven things, but that wasn't what caught my attention. The vast majority of teen novels were either vampire/occult books or shallow-teen-girl-clique ones. Don't teens get anything better to read? I wondered.

Not surprisingly, the Twilight Saga dominated the space, taking up most of two entire bookshelves with all the copies of the four books. Meyer has been hailed as "the world's most popular vampire novelist since Anne Rice" (Entertainment Weekly) and her novel Twilight is an Amazon "Best Book of the Decade... So Far." The kind of craze surrounding these books and the upcoming Twilight movie (set for release November 21, 2008) is nearly as epidemic as that of the Harry Potter books. Twilight Saga by-products, including paperweights and even Godiva chocolate, were also EVERYWHERE.

Stephenie Meyer wasn't the only vampire novelist in attendance. Also adding to the black, red, and white-colored covers were authors such as Rachel Caine, Ellen Schreiber, and Amelia Atwater-Rhodes. Most of these books also hinted at teen drama and romance, but definitely not in a way that I would want my teenage sister to be reading about.

Feeling rather disgusted, I turned to the shelf behind me. The vast majority of the books here were book series such as Clique Novels and Gossip Girl-- again, not something I want my sister reading, and nothing I was interested in at that age, either. How can books about girls being mean to one another be better than steamy vampire novels? (They can't.)

I also noticed that there were precious few books aimed at boys. True, statistically speaking, boys don't read as much as girls, but why would they when their only options are Eragon by Christopher Paolini and Stormbreaker by Anthony Horowitz? (Note: From a boy's perspective-- which I don't have-- these books might not be too bad. Personally, I didn't like them enough to get beyond the first 20 pages.)

So where on earth am I going with this? What do teen books have to do with me, anyways? "You're an adult, Marian, what do you expect?" No, don't give me that. I read kids' books like crazy, and I know for a fact that there has to be better than this. After much searching through the teen section, I finally found C.S. Lewis's Chronicles of Narnia-- in a tiny, cramped, almost nonexistent space-- but my point of all of this is that teens deserve better than the crud these publishers and authors are giving them. Middle school is one of the rockiest times in a teen's life, and they should be getting better help and entertainment options than these books are offering them. Reading about social cliques is not going to help my sister or any other teen girls. These books are sending the message, "If you want to be gorgeous and have a boyfriend and be popular, you should do what these fictional girls are doing." How does it help ANYBODY if the message is, "Be mean to all your friends"?

If I can't find any good teen books, I guess I'm just going to have to write one.