Thursday, April 30, 2009

Central New York

It's weird. There are some places that you have to get away from in order to appreciate. When I lived in central New York, I didn't like it much. I had a hard time meeting people and finding things to do. Most of the people my own age had grown up in the area and had a set group of friends already, not to mention kids and family. There was one bar, and it was pretty lame. The nearest movie theater was a half hour away. My apartment building was full of old people who bitched to the apartment manager if I vaccuumed after 7:30 at night. I couldn't wait to get out of there.

Now that I am out of there, I appreciate it more. It was very pretty and peaceful. It had Sylvan Beach, a great summer hangout with rides, bars and good food. It had some historic interest. There were a lot of scumbags living there: the police blotter was full of DWIs, domestic violence calls, and welfare fraud complaints. You could see a lot of this stuff firsthand whenever you went out, actually. But looking back, I often think that perhaps I counted the place out too soon and didn't give it enough of a chance.

Geese on the Irrigation Pond, waiting to take off, Fall 2006

Spring Comes to Downtown Oneida, 2007

Sunset over Lake Oneida, 2006

Fire Escape, Oneida, 2007

Sylvan Beach bar interior

Skee-Ball at Sylvan Beach

One of the Oldest Dark Rides in the State

The Galaxi at Sylvan Beach


Worse? April 30, 2009
Filed under: Wordpress — --Deb @ 1:01 am

Which is worse?

Finding a book you love and then hating everything else you try by that author, or

Reading a completely disappointing book by an author that you love?

This is an interesting question. I don't think I've ever had the first experience. I have had authors wear on me, though. For a while after I read My Sister's Keeper, I got into Jodi Picoult. I read the one about the Amish girl accused of killing her newborn baby. I read the one about the teenaged boy who was on trial for murdering his lifelong friend and girlfriend. I read the one about the twice-accused, never-guilty-of-pedophilia teacher and the girls who dabbled in witchcraft. Somewhere in there, they all started to blur together. She's got a formula, and once I could spot it, I lost interest. I felt I'd gotten all there was to get out of her books, at least for me.

I do hate reading disappointing books. A. Manette Ansay's book Blue Water leaps to mind, probably because it's in the stack of books I'm going to sell on Amazon, here on my desk. I loved all of her other books. I've read Vinegar Hill and River Angel many times. I thought the latter was an excellent novel about religion and faith, that should appeal to Christians without being overly preachy towards agnostics and atheists. I thought of it when I started that horribly cheesy "Christian" novel, Doesn't She Look Natural? last winter. Nothing in the first half made it Christian except for a few hackneyed references to the main character's belief in God and an unfortunate intolerance of homosexuality.

So, I had very high hopes for Blue Water. I was disappointed. I didn't find the main characters terribly engaging, nor did there seem to be much driving the story forward. You can read my review of it here. It wasn't horrible on its own. If my expectations had been lower, I might have even been keeping it instead of selling it.

So I guess I don't know which is worse. They're both pretty disappointing. But I'd say it's worse to be let down by an author you really like, than to merely find out you don't like a particular author after all.