the stranger

Shannon Thompson – novel and poetry writer

Shannon Thompson is an author who has written in the longest and shortest forms and her affinity for cats may only be topped by the love of coffee.  These are her good things.

Good things to read.

The Stranger by Albert Camus. It’s a classic novel which defines existentialism. Our emotions are challenged, and the writing reminds us of what we find normal and connecting within society. It’s a perfect example of confronting a norm, while also bringing out understanding and sympathy from the other side.

Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer–a novel told from nine-year-old Oskar who loses his father in 9/11. The story follows him as he tries to solve the mystery behind what it all means, while also using history (from his grandparents) to compare present day to. Very challenging and emotional read. The novel, not only has words, but pictures that will become a part of the soul.

Poetry (specifically Edgar Allen Poe, Sylvia Plath, and/or Billy Collins) I think it’s important to read both fiction, nonfiction, and poetry, because every genre brings something new into the light, and these three poets always bring me comfort, content sadness, and understanding, even if I have a moment of ambiguity towards why.

Good things to watch.

Casablanca.  It’s not only a classic; it’s honestly my favorite movie of all time. I’m a HUGE fan of older movies, because I find the writing and the story to be the most important part (rather than the graphics) and I’m always astounded by the subtle genius behind it all. Pay attention to everything Bogart says, or you might miss a beautiful instance.

A Little Princess. A little girl is dropped off at a boarding school after her father is enlisted in WWI. She’s from India, and she brings mystical stories to the others, while reflecting the reality of her life. It will return your childhood to your present-day life.

Big Fish. A reminder of the exaggeration of stories being an art form of love.

Good things to use.

Journals. I believe journaling can be one of the most important activities people can take part in. Write down what you’re feeling and learn why you feel this way. I have a strict rule of never returning until one year has passed, but that’s my personal preference.

Coffee. I need it to survive. Honestly. But it’s also comforting, energizing, and has recently had many health benefits discovered.

Kittens (Pets)- Cuddle up with that fuzzy one and make your day that much better.

Shannon is on Twitter and Facebook where you can keep up with new about her new book – Minutes Before Sunset – which comes out in May.

Advertisements

George W Bush – 43rd President of the United States

These are George W. Bush’s good things.

Good things to read.

In 2006 Bush entered a reading competition with adviser Karl Rove and although Rove read more in that year – 110 to Bush’s 95 – he claims the former president “lamely insisted he’d lost because he’d been busy as Leader of the Free World.”  What was on that list?  Goodwin’s Team of Rivals, Swanson’s Manhunt, Philbrick’s Mayflower, Crichton’s Next, and Campus’s The Stranger.

Good things to watch.

Virgin Media reported that the former president enjoyed both Black Hawk Down and Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me.  Roger Ebert said that Bush’s favorite movie was Field of Dreams but IMDB.com lists it as Saving Private Ryan.

Good things to use.

The former president has been “living as invisibly as possible” according to a recent New York Magazine story, “working diligently on his golf game at the Brook Hollow Golf Club in Dallas, showing up at a Rangers baseball game, or being spotted eating a steak in one of his favorite restaurants. While the rest of the world judges his years in office, he’s taken up painting, making portraits of dogs and arid Texas landscapes. “I find it stunning that he has the patience to sit and take instruction and paint,” says a former aide.”  How does it look, take a look.