The Writing Pages

About writing, books, authors, reviews & much more....

Do Some Gambling and Become A Great Poet!  

Here's good news for every child who gets a scolding from his parents every time he is playing or having fun. Are your parents asking you to study all the time?? So here's news for you all.

Edgar Allan Poe was a renowned American poet. For more information about him, click here. At the age of seventeen he went to the Virginia University after getting a scholarship. Poe was addicted to gambling and so in the first year itself he gambled all his scholarship money.

It is also said that Edgar owed around $2500 to the local gamblers. Gambling addiction led to alcoholism, which is still debated by many of Poe's followers. And what was more, it was reported that Edgar showed up drunk in class even during the examinations.

But the interesting fact is that Edgar Allan Poe finished with highest grades in his class and became the best student of his generation and even one of the best American poets! Now, isn't that something? I would really love to know what you all have got to say about this, eh!

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Murder Of Roger Ackroyd - by Agatha Christie  

This is a murder mystery by renowned author, Agatha Christie.

'Murder Of Roger Ackroyd' is a quite fascinating book. I mean I do not have words to describe the terrible shock I got at end. Actually being an avid Christie reader, I had always expected an unanticipated ending but this one; this was brilliant, better than all the rest!

The main protagonist and detective, Hercules Poirot and his absurdity has always been a hit with me. I’ve always loved the insanity yet intelligence, rudeness yet humor in him. The narrator, Dr. Shepard, also one who knew most about the crime did not let me, for a moment miss Captain Hastings, the curious but interesting man who has always been an accomplice to Poirot in his cases.

This one also had a humorous edge, which made the novel further more interesting. His description of his sister, Caroline, her always so womanly curious soul and intriguing character, which often irritates him, brought spice to the story.

The beginning of it was with the death of Mrs. Ferrars, who is suspected to kill her husband, followed by the murder of Mr. Roger Ackroyd, a wealthy man but with a miserly nature. The intriguing manner of his death and the suspects keep the plot unfurling with every page. The best part is the totally different manner of thought of the Detective, for which all praises must go to Christie. Poirot studies the human nature and pays attention to the most minute of details thus revealing a thrilling twist in the end!

Oh! No, I will not tell you the name of the murderer, although I am tempted to but I would not spoil the fun for all those who are reading it! Personally, as I said before, I have always thought Christie’s novels have been a bit too long, which at times gets on the nerves, nevertheless it was an absolutely thrilling read!

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Library Thing - For All Book Lovers  

Are you a real book worm who has a long list of books which knows no end? Is it difficult for you to keep tab of all the books that you have read? Not now friends, because I have got a wonderful solution for you.

Library Thing is a useful online virtual Library where you can catalogue all the books you have read and easily keep track of your personal collection and share your reviews and information with other readers. It is a wonderful place for all readers.

You can tag your books so that you can also find them with ease, when needed. These tags help in easy browsing of your huge collection. You can find information about any book that you want to read or would like to add to your library.

It is also very intriguing because you can converse and have social networking also with other like minded readers. You can join groups or discussions and share your sincere views on the topic.

You can manage your books by browsing and adding them to your library. You can read honest reviews about books which you are thinking of buying (this is the place where I got to!) And the best thing is that you can register or sign up for free!

So any of you on the lookout for such a thing....your search ends here! So go....join Library thing and have fun reading and keeping track of the books you read too!

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Arthur Conan Doyle Believed In Fairies!  

You all must have read those famous fantasy novels, especially Harry Potter. But have you ever really believed in such things? Yes, you guess it right! I am not actually crazy to be asking you if you believe that there is another land beside humans where magicians or fairies reside. As a child, the enticing novels by Enid Blyton may have made you believe that there is something like that, but do you believe in it even now???

Yes, I can see most of you nodding your head in a negative reply and raising an eyebrow asking me, "why this question, eh?" Okay! Not keeping much of a secret, I will tell you all. The reason is that I recently read that the famous mystery writer who created a furore by killing Sherlock Holmes in his novel and reinventing him again, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle actually believed in fairies!

Wow! A startling news, is it not? Now, whoever must have thought that such a writer or thrilling blood curdling mysteries would actually believe in those exotic, alluring fairies? So, time to change your opinion too.....

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Great Expectations - by Charles Dickens  

This is a classic novel and probably one of the greatest, written by the famous author, Charles Dickens.

This is a fascinating story about a young orphaned boy named Pip, who is being raised by his sadistic sister. His life changes when he meets an escaped convict while visiting his parents' grave. The book describes his journey to become a gentleman and how an unknown benefactor helps him.

His meetings with a weird old lady, Miss Havisham who has not seen the first dawn of the day or let a streak of the bright morning sun reach her after her ruined wedding. She raises a proud yet immensely beautiful girl called Estella to have her revenge on men.

The book also describes his meetings with Estella and his affection for her, the wealth he gained and his love for his family, especially good old Joe, his sister's benevolent husband with a true heart. The book ends making a true London Gentleman out of the 7 year old orphaned petty boy he was and a startling discovery about his benefactor!

While in London Pip makes friends, learns the art of rich living, becomes a gentleman yet he is not happy. His second and the most treasured dream of getting married to Estella is still unfulfilled. Will he be able to accomplish it?

According to me, this is one of the best books by Charles Dickens and I really enjoyed reading it. An interesting story full of the harsh realties of city life.

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Zoho Writer  

Recently, with the help of my blogging buddies, I found an online word processor called Zoho Writer. It is a helpful place where you can share documents online and also post your documents to your blog without using the blogspot or wordpress editor. And all you need for this wonderful place is a browser and an internet connection, of course but you need not install any software to your desktop. But yes, you need to register with the Zoho Writer also!

With Zoho Writer, you can:
  1. Access, edit, share documents from anywhere
  2. Create, edit and re-format documents using our WYSIWYG editor
  3. Allow multiple users to work on a document simultaneously
  4. Import Microsoft Word (DOC), OpenOffice text (ODT & SXW), HTML, RTF, JPG, GIF PNG files
  5. Share documents with your friends or publish them for public view
And this is not it! Zoho Writer also has an extensive thesaurus with around ten languages which include English, Greek, German, Czech, Polish, Russian, Slovak, Irish, Italian, French and of course, English...with more languages adding to this long list! To use this feature, you need to right-click on a word and select the thesaurus option from the pop up menu that appeared.

Any of you having problems posting with blogspot or wordpress could easily use Zoho Writer. And it could also be helpful for various other purposes. So go, check out this great site...... and hope this helps you all!

O. Henry - The Talented Prisoner!  

You must have heard of many renowned authors creating masterpieces written in good ambiance; but have you ever heard of a writer stirring the world with his novels while in prison? The writer in talk here is none other than the famous author, O. Henry.

The real name of renowned author, O. Henry was William Sydney Porter (September 11, 1862 – June 5, 1910). For more information on this famous author, click here. He has written around 400 plays through his lifetime which are famous for their wit, humor and characterization and the strange twist in the end.

While being talented and great at writing, O. Henry was not lucky enough for fortune to shine upon him. When he worked as a bank teller in Houston,the author was accused of stealing a few hundred dollars. This also initiated his rather sudden move to Houston.

But after a few years, O. Henry returned to visit his dying wife. But he was arrested and put into prison for 5 years. This ignited the spark in him and he took the pen name of O. Henry. His inmates at the prison provided him with perfect fodder and characters for his fiction.

Being a model inmate, Henry was released after only three years in jail. He passed away in 1910 with as many as 600 stories but only 33 cents in his name!

After releasing from jail,he was a defeated man as he lost his job, his family, his wife and everything he owned. But being in jail, the writer in him developed. During his stay in prison, Porter worked as a pharmacist and was treated more like an employee than a prisoner, and this allowed him freedom and more time to devote to his works.

He wrote at least twelve stories in jail. McClure's had already published one of his stories, "The Miracle of Lava Canyon," in 1897. After leaving prison O Henry went to New York City, where he published more than 300 stories and gained fame as America's favorite short-story writer.

Looks like every famous man goes to prison at least once in his/her lifetime, eh? What do you think? By the way, this example of O. Henry writing books in prison is also a good writing tip if anyone is willing to try. I wonder whether there are any takers ? :P

Danny The Champion Of The World - by Roald Dahl  

This is a children's novel by the famous writer, Roald Dahl.

This is a bit different from the usual books by Dahl which are mostly based on fascinating imaginations about witches, giants and other fantasy creatures. This book is a great read not only for the young souls but equally good for the older ones too. It's the story about a young boy Danny and his dad. Danny has formed a great bond with his father who has cared lovingly and perceptively all his life, after his mother died when he was only four months old.

They live a content life in the gypsy caravan behind the filling station
where his father works. They enjoy themselves together, telling tales to one another, building hot air balloons and working on cars together. But life goes haywire, at the age of nine, for little Danny.

He discovers one of the biggest secrets of his father's life. He learns that his father is a pheasant poacher! That night when he woke up, he discovered that he was all alone at home. Danny trusted his father so much; that he was hiding something from him never even crossed his mind! Thus, he was shocked when he learnt about his father's activities.

He then helps his father in poaching pheasants from the gardens of wicked
Victor Hazell, his arch rival and a wealthy land owner. The story then revolves around how Danny and his dad unfurl their plans. They have to kill many pheasants in two days in order to foil the great hunting event to be held at Hazell’s gardens. Then they become the masterminds behind a wonderfully devised plot ever hatched. Can they pull it off?

An exhilarating read more because it is very realistic than the other novels by Dahl. The story portrays a wonderful family relationship, all about love and faith. Although, poaching still means stealing, Dahl implies that everyone in small towns is attached to it!

I enjoyed reading the book and it is one of my favorites by Dahl
other than "Matilda". I enjoyed this tale much more because of the harsh reality it provided and the excellent storytelling which takes the reader to another world, altogether!

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