Christmas Letter 2019

The decade is done. It was a quiet year for me on the writing front, mostly due to the arrival of my gorgeous little daughter in June. Two kids is insanity! But it is wonderfully rewarding, especially when my 3 year old shows such a vigorous interest in his own books; reading stories to him is one of my favourite things to do.

As always, I thought I’d like to share the best books I read during the year, with hopes that you might discover something that interests you!

  • On Being Blue (William H. Gass) – a beautiful little essay of sorts that celebrates the brilliance of words and language.
  • Diary of a Nobody (George and Weedon Grossmith) – the hilarious diary of Mr. Pooter, a optimistic yet delusional everyman.
  • The Oblique Place (Caterina Pascual Soderbaum) – this was a moving novel that focused on the horrors of World War II, specifically the Holocaust and the dramatic effect it had on humanity. A challenging but excellent book.
  • The Art of Reading (Damon Young) – similar to On Bring Blue, this was an essay about what makes for great reading. So much of literature is squared on the art of writing, this book flips that notion on its head.
  • The Other Side (Albert Kubin) – a creepy surreal story that evokes the haunting style of the author’s artworks.
  • The School of Life (Alain de Botton) – a self-help book, yes, which I’m normally a bit ‘meh’ about, but this book taught me some excellent things.
  • The Metamorphosis (Franz Kafka) – famously sad tale of a man who wakes up one day and has transformed into a giant insect.

Then there’s the big one – I spent the entire year reading the Bible on a daily, and have just recently finished reading the whole thing. It’s been wonderfully rewarding and insightful to have God’s word as part of a daily routine. I’m a bit sad that it’s all over now, but I guess I’ll just have to read some of it again!

If you’re looking for a free book to read over the holiday period, both Tenebrae Manor and The Will of the Wisp are free to download for the next few days.

My plans for 2020 are loose and a little directionless. I would like to write a bit more than I did this year, but here’s to hoping that both time permits it and that inspiration strikes. After a difficult 2019 for myself on a personal level, I’ll just be hoping 2020 holds bluer skies (literally – Sydney is choking on bushfire smoke right now!).

But anyway, Merry Christmas, merry decade. Keep reading, keep writing. Bring on the roaring ’20s.

PSC xx

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