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Below are the 12 most recent journal entries recorded in The brain that doesn't feed itself, eats itself's LiveJournal:

Thursday, September 28th, 2006
12:12 am
Child/teen/ya books
Poll #831626 Series

Did you ever read?

Just William
Paul Jennings
Famous Five
Secret Seven
Point Horror
Drina Ballerina
Jennings and Derbyshire
The Magic Faraway Tree
What Katy Did
The Magic Key
Puffin adventure, choose your own ending thingies
Harry Potter
Some other series...

Which would be...

That should be Darbishire not Derbyshire.
I'm tired after a 13 hr shift. Leave me alone.

I forgot The Red Shoes and White Boots series, and there was some series about horses that people loved too. Oh and Judy Blume and some other insufferable girly ones.
There are other Enid Blytons I forgot.
I don't count Philip Pullman as anything other than adult fiction.

Maybe my recent book-void-induced depression is a result of the lack of adult series. I don't like letting books go.

Any reccomendations?

Don't say Jack Reacher.
Monday, September 25th, 2006
12:30 pm
I started reading Ulysses by James Joyce a while ago, because people I look up to keep mentioning that it's good. So far I've read about two hundred and six pages, out of about nine hundred and thirty-something, and frankly it's pissing me off. I already knew it was written a long time ago - and therefore contains a lot of unfamiliar terms and phrases - and has no plot, but so far it's just been a load of completely random thoughts strung together and very difficult to follow. I hate to be a quitter with things like this, but...

Have you read Ulysses?

I found it somewhat heavy-going, but it's ultimately worth it.
I didn't finish it.
I had no problem with it.
How dare you ask this question, you uncultured oaf!
I thought Ulysses was a cartoon..?

Current Mood: curious
Wednesday, August 2nd, 2006
10:22 pm
Living Space
Am I allowed to post stuff in here about my own fiction? Well, if not, I suppose it can just be deleted. Anyway, my latest short story (not that short actually, at about eleven thousand words, but certainly no novel) is finished. It's a surrealistic mystery/fantasy.

Click here to read - unfortunately, due to it's length, it would be somewhat tricky to paste directly into Livejournal.

I hope you enjoy it - and if not, constructive criticism is always appreciated!

Current Mood: accomplished
Saturday, June 17th, 2006
2:12 pm
Julian Jaynes - The origin of consciousness in the breakdown of the bicameral mind
O, what a world of unseen visions ad heard silences, this insubstantial country of the mind! What ineffable essences, these touchless rememberings and unshowable reveries! And the privacy of it all! A secret theatre of speechless monologue and prevenient counsel, an invisible mansion of all moods, musings, and mysteries, an infinite resort of disappointments and discoveries. A whole kingdom where each of us reigns reclusively alone, questioning what we will, comanding what we can. A hidde hermitage where we may study out the troubled book of what we have done and yet may do. An introcosm that is more myself than anything I can find in a mirror. this consciousness that is myself of selves, that is everything, and yet nothing at all - what is it? and where did it come from? And why?

Few questions have endured longer or traversed a more perplexing history than this, the problem of consciousness and its place in nature. Despite centuries of pondering and experiment, of trying to get together two supposed entities called mind and matter in one age, subject and object in another, or soul and body in still others, despite endless discoursing on the streams, states or contents of consciousness, of distinguishing terms like intuitions, sense data, the given, raw feels, the sensa, presentations and representations, the sensations, images and affections of structuralist introspections, the evidential data of the scientific positivist, phenomenolgical fields, the apparitios of Hobbes, the phenomena of Kant, the appearances of the idealist, the elements of Mach, the phanera of Peirce, or the category errors of Ryle, in spite of all of these, the problem of consciousness is still with us. Something about it keeps returning, not taking a solution.

It is the difference that will not go away, the difference bewtween what others see of us and our sense of our inner selves and the deep feelings that sustain it. The difference between the you-and-me of the shared behavioural worlds and the unlocatable location of things thought about. Our reflections and dreams, and the imaginary conversations we have with others, in which never-to-be-known-by-anyone we excuse, pardon, defend, proclaim our hopes and regrets, our futures and our pasts, all this thick fabric of fancy is so absolutely different from handable, standable, kickable reality with its trees, grass, tables, oceans, hands, stars - even brains! How is this possible? How do these ephemeral existences of our lonely experiece fit into the odered array of nature that somehow surrounds and engulfs this core of knowing?
Tuesday, May 2nd, 2006
12:25 am
One more: quick and easy
What's the last book you read?
Was it good or bad?

Mine? Human Traces by Sebastian Faulks.
It was fantastic, I read most of it in a fortnight and it's the size of a bible. I've only got 100 pages left and I'm making them last as long as I possibly can because I can't bear to leave the world in it's in.
Typical Faulks style; descriptive, emotive and engaging. A complex set of themes: science, madness, war, death, family, love and medicine.
It effortlessly puts you into the world of early C20th alienists. Theories about evolution being published and contested, Freud being debated, the birth of science we take for granted. I loved imagining the frustration of their mechanical limitations - weak microscopes etc. Yet delighting in ideas that would've lead to what we know today, observations of hereditary and the logical progression from it, I'm in the past with them, but able to see the glimmer of the scientific future I'm in now. It also contains a captivating, if romantic, presentation of a scizophrenic mind.

A wonderful, wonderful read. Highly reccomended.
12:23 am
Bad Mod, very bad Mod
Okay, so we fell at the first monthly hurdle.

Instead: A discussion post, shamelessly stolen from my wife apiphile

"I want to know what you like to read."

Not a list of titles of books I’ve never read. What kind of protagonists do you like? What sort of relationships? What prose styles appeal to you? Do you like circular stories? Flashbacks? Stories told backwards? Stories told in a mix of register or media? Have you ever thought that something could be improved by including a poem? Do you like reading screenplays? What sort of level of description do you enjoy? Do you prefer information delivered in description, told to you by the narrator, demonstrated by action, left for you to figure out or exposed in dialogue? How do you feel about subplots or being taken by surprise by the focus of a story? Do you like rich language or sparse language? Lots of dialogue? How about people writing in dialect? First person, second person, third person, close or omniscient? Past, present, whatever tense? Of the books that are your favourites, why are they your favourites? Are there any unifying themes between your top fives, like father-son relationships or attitudes to death or coming-of-age? Do you read from a particular genre? Do you like pastiche/parody? What are your feelings on allegorical fiction? Fairytales? Folklore? Do you like being TOLD a story in person as well as reading them? Do you tell anecdotes or like listening to anecdotes? What tone or preoccupation characterises the work of your favourite authors? Do you like people who use words to mean something different to their intended use? Do you LIKE adverbs? How frequently do you notice the rhythm of a piece of writing – when it is good, when it is out of synch with the content, or only when it’s a poem?
Tuesday, March 14th, 2006
6:56 pm
Pick! It's the 14th.
March's books:

Poll #690918 Either Or

Chose this month's set text

Running With Scissors - Augusten Burroughs
Asylum - Patrick McGrath

Majority rules, 24 hours before final decision.

I picked the two books closest to me, sorry for the lack of imagination. I picked the one I haven't read yet but I'm more than happy to re-read Running With Scissors because I loved it.


Scar Tissue by Anthony Kiedis

Any suggestions for next month's?
6:52 pm
Name: Howard

Currently reading: The Art of War by Sun Tzu (translated by Thomas Cleary)

Favourite book: Really difficult to pick just one... I just finished The Algebraist by Iain M Banks, which was fantastic (as are most of his fic/sci-fi works in my opinion). Other favourites are: Nineteen Eighty-Four, The Hitch-Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy, most of the Discworld series by Terry Pratchett (and Good Omens with Neil Gaiman), A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson, Peoplewatching (formerly "Manwatching") by Desmond Morris, How the Dead Live and My Idea of Fun by Will Self, miscellanious 'novellas' and short fics by H P Lovecraft and A Scanner Darkly by Philip K Dick. Am I allowed to pick graphic novels as well? If so, then I'll also have The Preacher by Garth Ennis/Steve Dillon, The Crow by J O Barr and Like A velvet Glove Cast In Iron and Ghostworld by Daniel Clowes.
Thursday, March 9th, 2006
1:58 pm
Name: James

Favourite book: Just one? One favourite book? Is not possible! It was bad enough narrowing it down to 10 when I was off to China. Eeek! I don't know.
Here's a small selection of the books that I like, instead: The Hithchhikers Guide to the Galaxy Trilogy, Good Omens, Neverwhere, all the Discworld series, The Mars Trilogy by Kim Stanley Robinson (a fucking epic "future history" with huge amounts of excellent science and politics in, recommended to me by two different tutors at uni), The Illuminatus Trilogy (made all the better by reading the Principia Discordia a few years before and Cosmic Trigger straight after), His Dark Materials (I love the religion, the science, and the Oxford), Harry Potter (so sue me, it's fun), a lot of things by Phillip K Dick but especially VALIS (it's the religion again, gets me every time), Lord of the Rings (geek), and lots and lots and lots more. Non-fiction tends to be history (anything pre-1500), philosophy (pre-Socratic generally), politics (liberalism, anarchism) and religion (Graeco-Roman, Gnostic, Buddhist).

Currently reading: I read lots of books at the same time. Currently a huge pile of Phillip K Dick novels are providing my fiction-before-bed fix, whilst Heraclitus and Krotopkin are daytime reading on the tube and at lunch and so on. Heraclitus is especially good for bus journeys, as you can just about fit a single fragment into each journey (today's was "every animal is driven to pasture with a blow").
1:17 pm
Name: Ara Maye
Favourite book: Can't pick just one - books that I utterly love include Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett, Wasp Factory by Iain Banks, and The Private Life Of The Brain by Susan Greenfield. Oh, and One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest by Ken Kesey.
Currently reading: I'm between books, either going for Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad, Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy or American Psycho by Brett Easton Ellis next I reckon. Feel free to nudge me in the direction of one or another of these.
1:01 pm
Name: : Charlie Waldren

Favourite Book: tough one, at the moment I'd still have to say NeverWhere by Neil Gaiman, or possibly Only Forward by Michael Marshall Smith.

Actually, to add to that list, one of my favourite books from when I was younger was Junk by Melvin Burgess. There's something beautiful about the bleakness of it that I fell in love with, and still re-read every now and then.

Currently reading: : The Illuminatis Trilogy (although it's going slowly)
12:54 pm
Example introduction
Name: Matilda
Favourite book: Tough question, maybe Birdsong, by Sebastian Faulks? Faulks and Alice Sebold personify my favourite kind of writing style. I'm a Big big big fan of autobiographies. Huge fan of historical and political biographies too (Wild Swans, Long Walk To Freedom). I love R.D.Laing, and Jung; Most of the beatnicks (Sallinger, Wilson, Normon O Brown, Kerouac) and Philip Pullman.
Currently reading: Sidhartha, by Herman Hesse, just finished Running With Scissors by Burroughs - a brilliant book.
Recently finished favourite reads; The Time Traveller's Wife, Lucky, Wasted, Solzenitsyn's Cancer Ward and The Lovely Bones.

Mod stuff

Please post as often as you can, about any books, not just the monthly ones.
Please send me ideas for this month's set texts.
Let me know if you want to help moderate or maintain this community. (This will entail things like organising memories, accepting members and posts and tagging entries)

Members please title and tag your posts:
eg. Introduction, My favourite book
Tags; intros, favourite books
Entries about the monthly book should be tagged and titled with the book's name
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