Facets of a Muse

Examining the guiding genius of writers everywhere

A Book Lover’s Tag


It’s a week before NaNoWriMo. Well, actually less than a week, but who’s counting? A few of my blogging friends have taken on a Book Lover’s Tag in the past couple weeks. Annika Perry, a wonderful blogger across the pond, kicked off the challenge to her readers. Another one of my blogging friends, D. Wallace Peach, took up the challenge and passed it along. Then, still another of my good blogging friends, Mae Clair, shared her response to the Book Lover’s Tag.

So, since I’m finishing up my “homework”, to be turned in to my publisher by November 1–which also happens to be the first day of NaNoWriMo–I figured I’d take the easy path to this week’s post, instead of boring you with my NaNo prep and my Muse’s stern, er, presence.

So, here we go:

Do you have a specific place for reading?

My favorite place is a recliner in our family room. If I’m drawn into the book, it doesn’t matter much what the rest of the family is doing. Barring that, I can read just about anywhere, like in a waiting room or in the break room at work.

Bookmark or random piece of paper?

Bookmark, if I can find one. I’ve gotten some nice swag ones from some authors I know, and one of my writing sisters gave me a beautiful one. It’s almost too nice to use. If I can’t find a bookmark, then a random piece of paper will do.

Do you eat or drink whilst reading?

Yep. Eating or drinking while reading depends on the time of day. I like to read when I eat breakfast or lunch. I usually have a glass of water handy, or if it’s the right time, some craft beer. Or wine. And chocolate. Of course πŸ˜€

Music or TV whilst reading.

Boy, that’s a tough one. I prefer no TV, but since I do most of my reading in the family room, and my husband has this thing with having the TV on All The Time, I’ve learned to block it out. Which is pretty easy if I’m deep into the book. I can listen to music, but I’m just as comfortable reading in silence

One book at a time or several? book stack

I used to read several books at a time at a pretty good clip. I still read more than one book at a time, but at a far slower rate than I did before I started writing more. To speed things up (ha!), I do listen to audio books when I exercise, either running outside or on the treadmill.

Do you prefer to read at home or elsewhere?

I prefer to read at home, even though I will read other places. Home is where the cozy is πŸ˜€

Read out loud or silently?

Silently. I sometimes will read my own work out loud to hear any problems with the sentences.

open book

Do you read ahead or skip pages?

I only read ahead if I’m not drawn into the story, or the scene is dragging. You know, like, when is this scene going to be over and what’s in the next scene. If I’m sucked into the story, I just read faster πŸ˜€

Break the spine or keep it like new.

I don’t intentionally break the spine. I’m all about taking care of books.

Do you write in books?

OMG, no. Even non-fiction, no way. Wait. Nope, pretty sure no. Highlighting, yes, in non-fiction books.

What books are you reading now?

Hoo-boy. I’m into about four books right now, and a beta read. John Sandford’s Dark of the Moon, Lee Child’s Echo Burning (audio), D. Wallace Peach’s The Bone Wall, Lisa Cron’s Wired for Story. Yikes. And these are between writing sessions. No wonder it’s taking me so incredibly long to read a book.


What is your childhood favorite book?

So many to choose from, depending on how old I was. I loved the Three Investigators books by Alfred Hitchkock; no Hardy Boys or Nancy Drew for me. And one book I remember in particular is Scott O’Dell’s Island of the Blue Dolphins. I wore my copy out. Anne McCaffery’s Pern books were favorites back when as well, and I still treasure them. Dragons! What’s not to love?dragonflightIsleOfBlueDolphins

What is your all-time favorite book?

Only one? Seriously? No way. Can’t pick just one. There have been so many books I finished and thought: “Wow. This is my new favorite book.”

Okay, okay. If I had to pick one book and only one book to take to a deserted island … I can’t. Arrgh. Noo. I can’t. I can list my favorites by genre. Yes, I think I can do that. My favorite fantasy series (see, I still can’t) is the Sword of Truth series by Terry Goodkind. I tried to read J.R.R. Tolkein’s stuff, but I could only manage The Hobbit. Urban fantasy? Jim Butcher’s Dresden series, hands down. SciFi? The Pern books, of course. Crime mystery is J. D Robb’s In Death series.

Okay, enough. I can’t do it. Too many books, not enough time! New favorites might be on my TBR list, and I just haven’t gotten to them yet.

And there you have it. Tell me what your faves are.

Next week is NaNo kick-off. I’m pretty sure my Muse will be at his post to keep me motivated πŸ˜€ Have a great writing weekend!


Author: Julie Holmes, author

A fiction writer since elementary school (many years ago), and NaNoWriMo annual participant for a decade, I have been published in small press magazines such as "Fighting Chance" and "The Galactic Citizen". I write adult mystery with a touch of romance, mystery with extrasensory elements, contemporary fantasy, and epic fantasy, and I'm represented by the fabulous Cynthia Zigmund of Second City Publishing Services. My debut novel, "Murder in Plane Sight", will be released in March, 2019, by Camel Press (an imprint of Coffeetown Press/Epicenter Press). In real life, I am a technical writer with a family of two teens, a wonderful hubby, one cat (what writer doesn't have cats??), two dogs, three chickens, and more chipmunks, squirrels, and rabbits than any garden should have to deal with. My garden, our hobby farm, and Nature's annual seasons are some of my muses.

22 thoughts on “A Book Lover’s Tag

  1. Yeah! πŸ˜€ Julie, I’m so chuffed you’ve taken up this tag and thank you so for the lovely shout-out! Just wish this here ‘pond’ was a lot smaller as reckon we could chat about books & writing for hours!!πŸ“– πŸ˜ƒ Phew…for a second I thought chocolate would be left off the list off food/drink during reading – I’m intrigued by your craft beer. The last question is just impossible but I loved how you tackled it…giving us a flavour of a couple of all-time favourites before collapsing in exasperation! Island of the Blue Dolphins is on my wishlist but is hard to get here…I must try the library. Hope you have a relaxing weekend (in between your homework for 1st November), enjoy reading the books and good luck with NaNo!! The months are rushing by far too fast!! πŸ˜ƒβ€οΈ

    Liked by 2 people

    • LOL! You’ve got that right. Before you know it, it’ll be Easter! And chocolate has to be in the mix, right? πŸ˜€ As for the craft beer, I have to admit my trip to Germany way back in ’01 spoiled me for the typical US swill–er, beer. The beer in Germany had so much more flavor and body … Anyway. I just had a patron in the library a few weeks ago who asked about Island of the Blue Dolphins, and it reminded me how much I loved that book. O’Dell wrote additional books about that story, and I think I read the next one, but the first one was my fave.

      I’ve got a couple things left to fill out on my “homework” packet, and I’m noodling those about in the ol’ noggin. My edits are pretty much done at this point–I could edit the manuscript to death, but I figure I’ll wait for my editor to tell me what she thinks needs to be revised. A smaller pond–yes! Man, we could spend some serious hours at a coffeehouse talking books and writing, couldn’t we πŸ˜€ Have a great weekend, Annika!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Thank you, Julie…I’m having a lovely weekend. At a beautiful dinner party last night, today my first piano lessons (what am I letting myself in for?) Good news about the edits for now! You can relax…for a day or two! πŸ˜€β€οΈ

        Liked by 2 people

  2. i read this post in Diana’s blog and have been meaning to do it since. You beat me to it.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Thanks so much for taking up the challenge, Julie. My husband also has to have the TV on ALL THE TIME. Ugh. Picking out a favorite book is hard, isn’t it? Your struggle cracked me up, and I’ve added Goodkind to my TBR list. Have fun with NaNo… and thanks so much for the shout out for The Bone Wall. Yay! Hope you’re enjoying it. πŸ˜€

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, picking out a favorite is one of those things I hope my life never depends on πŸ˜€ Goodkind is incredible. The first book of the series, Wizard’s First Rule, blew me away because I couldn’t put it down, and I had to stop and think about why I had to keep reading. He did a great job pulling the reader through the story. I feel so bad it’s taking me so long to read the Bone Wall. I like it, it’s a neat take on the post-apocalyptic world. I really like Angel and Priest πŸ™‚ I’m both looking forward to NaNo and dreading it a little, because I’m still struggling to choose my project. I think my contracted Book 2 will win out, though. Then I can work on the other project while I let the NaNo novel rest.

      Have a great weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Julie, Right now I’m reading “A Column of Fire” by Ken Follett. I have not read a book by him for some time. Before that I read, “But first they killed my father,” a non-fiction page turner that will be made into a movie produced by Angelina Jolie.

    I, too, read in my comfy zone at home, or on an airplane. The TV may be on for “noise” and I stop my reading when the TV show calls to me with something enjoyable on the screen. I prefer silence to music whether I’m reading or writing.

    Good luck with the Nano November challenge. Frances

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Frances! And yes, I hear ya about stopping when the TV show calls. Which is why I need to find a writing area away from the TV. My usual writing nook has lost its appeal, but I might have to do something to make it call to me again … like NaNo! πŸ˜€ Have a great week!


  5. “and a beta read”–woohoo! I get a mention! Can’t wait until my mention will be more along the lines of D. Wallace Peach’s actual book with an actual title! And, oh yes, home is where the cozy is. Loved that line the best. Well, that and the line about the beta read. Did I mention woohoo! yet? πŸ˜‰

    Liked by 1 person

  6. ItΒ΄s been such a pleasure to read about your reading habits, Julie! I loved “Island of the Blue Dolphins” so much! And IΒ΄m also a very big fan of Terry GoodkindΒ΄s! His Sword series totally rocks! πŸ˜€

    Liked by 1 person

  7. My hubby is also one of those who has the TV on All The Time – I can block out anything, anytime thankfully.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Awesome to see you doing the Book Tag, Julie, and thanks for the shout-out. That last question is really a tough one, isn’t it?

    I do remember enjoying the Pern series, and when I have to, I can block out the TV. Hubby normally has it on while I’m reading, if I read in the family room.

    It still amazes me that there are many people who can read more than one book at a time, LOL!
    Hope you got all of your “homework” done!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I did get my homework done, and I turned it in on time πŸ™‚ Now the waiting game. And waiting. But NaNo will occupy my time for now, and after NaNo I’ve got another project I want to work on depending on revisions and deadlines with my publisher. So, I’m planning to get back into the habit of writing every day, which I’ve lost since summer and the garden took up so much time. Have a great rest of your week!

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Pingback: A Book Lover’s Tag β€” Facets of a Muse – Suman Freelancer

  10. what a great interview Julie. “Do you have a specific place for reading?” I loved this question. that takes me many years back when I was a teenager. I was a type you would call “a silly teenager” hahaha! I would hide in the bathroom to read only to escape mum from doing chores she asked me to do haha! But then on, at school we did get periods for reading, I so much enjoyed that. But then the rest of the time, I would chill out in the garden under the fruit trees in an armchair my feet up and then the reading took its toll. Those days I lived back on the island, my life was tropical. Nowadays I read in bed, it helps me to fall asleep.

    I enjoyed your interview, very interesting! Thank you for posting!

    Liked by 1 person

    • So glad you enjoyed this! Wow, I would’ve loved to be able to hand out in a garden to read πŸ™‚ Unfortunately, every time I go out to the garden, I have to weed it 😐 I spent a lot of time reading in my room when I was a kid–out of sight, out of mind πŸ˜€

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s