Stephen King’s On Writing and getting lost in the Vellum (January, 2012)

Isn’t this wet weather lovely? Hope everyone’s having a good one despite it.


Thought I’d provide you all with an update on my book-related activities of late.


Vellum is proving to be a tough novel to read. It’s more of an acquired taste, I’ve found, and it’s trying very hard to be a good novel but misses the mark a little. The plot is hard to follow, with multiple stories interwoven with each other in a never-ending labyrinth of different events and little background information. It’s like a puzzle, and you know what it’s supposed to look like but no matter how hard you try it just doesn’t seem to fit.


Despite these troubles, however, I’m going to persevere with it. It’s a nice idea, having Bible legends (if I can use that word) like angels and gods slipping between dimensions and the whole theme that the world we live in isn’t actually the world, but just a patina of life, an interpretation of the Vellum which is really what we’re living in. The Vellum itself is something that certain individuals -unkin, it’s explained more in the book- can explore and switch into from the ‘real world’. It’s a mess of different times, different places, everything is all mixed in and sometimes it’s hard to tell where you’re supposed to be. 


I’m going to follow it through and see if the sequel is worth reading.


In other news, I was walking around Dymocks today and I happened across Stephen King’s partial memoir On Writing, a very interesting work which is a good resource for any writer- potential or acclaimed and published- to have on hand. The memoir part is in itself an interesting dialogue on the trials and tribulations of a published and best-selling writer who has a long list of books to prove his success, a summary of sorts of what one person needed to do to make it into the world of a writer. The technical part of it contains useful pointers: for example, try not to use words like ‘seriously’ or ‘gushingly’ when describing speech, thankyou Mr King; and also general rules of writing that we all should know, especially when it comes to grammar and the English language.  I surprised myself with the amount of information that I needed to review…


I also purchased some more books recently, namely:

  • The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne
  • The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain
  • Journey to the Centre of the Earth by Jules Verne
  • The Prince and the Pauper by Mark Twain
  • Crescendo by Becca Fitzpatrick (read the first one and loved it, one of the few novels of the recent vampire/angels craze that I can read and retain my sanity)
  • Misspent Youth by Peter F Hamilton (this is my very first Hamilton, have been intrigued since school and figured it would be a good introduction to his writing style before I dive into the series)

So that’s my recent activity lately. I’ll keep you all aprised.


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