Friday, August 20, 2010

Some Interesting Tidbits

Some interesting tidbits from Shelf Awareness about a new web site for PNBA, and Elliott Bay's new location, plus a dating site for bibliophiles...where was that when I was young and free?

The Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association has launched NW Book
Lovers , a blog for the general public
featuring PNBA member stores, libraries, Northwest books and authors and
everything literary in the Northwest, aiming for "a behind-the-scenes
indie store kind of vibe," as PNBA put it.

The site, which the association hopes stores will promote to customers,
features daily headlines, a store directory, a place to comment on what
participants are reading, news about stores and local authors and links
to store blogs and websites.

Random Acts of Reading
turned its spotlight on the Elliott Bay Book Company, Seattle, Wash.: "I was skeptical when
I first heard that Elliott Bay had decided to move.... I was absolutely
floored the first time I walked into the new location. Though they were
unloading boxes of books, you could feel how fantastic this new store
was. Somehow they had managed to bring Elliott Bay's smell of cedar and
sense of space to a completely new space that's better laid out, lighter
and airier. It's truly unbelievable how the new store captures the
essence of the old."

Will "Who's the author?" replace "What's your sign?" as an irresistible
opening line? hopes so.
The social networking site is "looking to connect people free of charge based on
their favorite reads.... Alikewise users can search and be searched by
the books and book opinions they put up next to their profile
pictures.... Other users can leave comments about your books, and the
site sends notifications when somebody adds the same title or books in
the same general interest area," the Associated Press reported.

"There are plenty of niche dating sites, but they struck me as a bit too
niche," said co-founder Matt Sherman. "They seem to orient themselves
over one particular interest or type of person--athletics, religion. Our
attitude is that books can be about anything. They're a means to an end
to get the conversation going."

Friday, August 13, 2010

Artists Creating Art from Books

This was another brilliant article link from Shelf Awareness on an artist who uses people's bookshelves in her art!

Jane Mount’s Ideal Bookshelf

Mark Medley August 9, 2010 – 2:10 pm

The books on someone’s shelf will often tell you more about a person than the clothes they wear, the music they listen to, or the friends they keep. Jane Mount, a visual artist hailing from New York City, taps into this emotional connection with her project Ideal Bookshelf, a series of paintings which capture the spines of peoples favourite books.
“We show off our books on shelves like merit badges, because we’re proud of the ideas we’ve ingested to make us who we are, and we hope to connect with others based on that. I think this is endearing and charming,” she says. “When I paint someone else’s favorites and they have the same book I have in mine, I feel closer to them, like we must understand each other in some meaningful way.
Before books, Mount used to draw large paintings of people, but she lost her studio space and was forced to work out of her small apartment in Manhattan, “at one end of the dining room table.” One day in early 2007, as a sort of exercise, she painted some of the books on her own bookshelf.
“A friend happened to see me working on them, and loved them so much he bought all three of them right then,” she says. “I had never created any work before that had caused such a visceral and immediate response in someone. I realized there was something special about books, both visually and conceptually. Art rarely moves people as instantly as a piece of music, or a plate of food, but these do that, in some small way. When someone enters a room where one of the paintings is hanging, they immediately point out which ones they also have and love. It’s an acceptable form of bookshelf voyeurism.”
Soon, she began taking custom orders: just send in a photograph of your favourite books, in a row or in a pile, and Mount will lovingly render them in gouache and ink on paper. As of Monday, she’s posted 80 paintings on her website, Ideal Bookshelf.

Read more:

Friday, August 06, 2010

Ray Bradbury Turns 90 this week

It's no secret that I adore science fiction/fantasy/screenplay and non fiction author Ray Bradbury, who also happens to be the master of the short story.
Happy Birthday, master of the universe Ray Bradbury, and thank you for all the wonderful stories you've entertained us with these past 90 years!

Here's a quote from the master himself:

"We must move into the universe. Mankind must save itself. We must escape the danger of war and politics. We must become astronauts and go out into the universe and discover the God in ourselves."