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Escapism Via Books

kawaiidaigakusei at 12:00AM, Sept. 14, 2015

You know that idea about a frog in a pot of water getting cooked before realising that the water had been gradually increasing in temperature until it was rapidly boiling? Well last week, I was the frog and my room was that pot of water.

September has been the hottest month in Southern California this year. I can not really complain because I am not dealing with the forest fires of Northern California and I did not even feel a jolt from the earthquake that happened in Baja California over the weekend. I guess my real problem is that heat halts my productivity that I end up searching for the nearest cool zone so I can grab an ice cold drink and sit down in an air conditioned room with a great book for hours.

It was during a marathon book reading session that I began to feel like Bastian from the NeverEnding Story because the adventure would keep unraveling each time I would open the book and I did not want to put it down. I have managed to plow through the first three parts of the book I am reading and I have saved the epilogue for bedtime right before I fall asleep.

I think there are so many things going on in the world to distract our attention. The current news cycle is like a master puppeteer that manipulates and plays with the highs and lows of our emotions. I have found that the best way to negate all anxiety from the media is to distance myself from most forms of technology. Reading for pleasure is one of the best gifts you can give to yourself.

So, what are you currently reading?


Drawing your world! - world drawing cast

ozoneocean wants to know:

OK, we had a Quackcast about creating your world a while ago, but that was mainly in terms of writing. Some people touched on the visual aspects, fallopiancrusader among them, and Usedbooks showed us her city map…

-For this Quackcast we're going to talk about creating the LOOK of the world your story takes place in. Whether that's just the flat scenes with a few props you get in a comic strip or the whole city you get in Tantz Aerine's Without Moonlight (

Do you do research? Just base it all on imagination? Draw what you know? Do you do designs for buildings, floor plans, interiors, the objects within the room?
What about the colour choices of your environments- Do you go for a unified scheme or just do whatever?

Do you attempt perspective? Base your stuff on a real city? Use photos? 3D design?


What's Quacking?
Do you have any original art to contribute to our stock image database, announcements, community projects, ideas, news, or milestones to report? Please leave general comments below or send a PQ to kawaiidaigakusei. Email me at kawaiidaigakusei(at)gmail(dot)com.



kawaiidaigakusei at 10:43PM, Sept. 14, 2015

I know the exact type of book that fits under the "bathroom book" category that KimLuster mentioned. The toilet is the perfect shelf for those Twilight books when I do not want them taking up room on my headboard shelf.

ozoneocean at 9:56PM, Sept. 14, 2015

When I want escapisim I'm like Gunwallace - I want to read something formulaic, simple, straightforward: you know what to expect and you love it. To that end The Jeeves books by PG Wodehouse are marvellous, I can't stress that enough. Also that hack and slash fantasy he talks about, but not D&D, maybe "lone wolf"? Was that the series? I dunno. ANyway, simple "low" fantasy fits the purpose, also cheap crappy SciFi from the 1970s for a second hand bookshop, I bought a pile of that once expressly for the purpose and found some real gems! :D

Gunwallace at 12:36PM, Sept. 14, 2015

I've been recovering from illness for a while now, so reading has been a big part of my days. I've been working through a pile of D&D books, the R.A. Salvatore Drizzt series and related titles. Some are terrible, but most have enough plot and hack-and-slash action to keep me entertained. Normally I read non-fiction more than escapism, but lately I've really needed to let my mind wander in a book.

usedbooks at 12:18PM, Sept. 14, 2015

@kawaii: Pratchett. I don't know if it's escapism, but it's definitely stress relief. I find a laugh on each page. When I was a teen, I read Agatha Christie and dabbled in writing murder mysteries to both fight the boredom of school and avoid having to socialize with people. Working minimum wage in a grocery store, I read Sherlock Holmes during my breaks. That was true escapism because that job sucked so bad. I wanted to be anywhere else. But the job stressed me out and stifled my mind so badly that I couldn't write.

KimLuster at 8:11AM, Sept. 14, 2015

I'm more like Usedbooks - writing and art is my escapism. I do read ALOT but it's more interest-driven than escapism. What I read these days tends to be science and philosophy, preferable books that combine them. For example, I'm reading a book called 'Biocentrism' by Robert Lanza, which asserts that you can't study physics and reality, or create theories thereof, without including the living observer ('yourself')... ie. Life/biology is an intrinsic part of reality. Also reading 'Quautum Enigma' which also touches on the power of the observer concerting reality (these interest show up in my story a bit... ;)). But... I do have my escapist books too. Currently also reading a watercolor graphic novel called 'MoonShadow'! It's not really escapism though; it's a 'bathroom book' - meaning I read a couple pages of it here and there when nature calls ;)

kawaiidaigakusei at 5:23AM, Sept. 14, 2015

@usedbooks- That is a remarkable coincidence! I finished reading Good Omens two weeks ago. Are you a Gaiman or a Pratchett?

usedbooks at 5:04AM, Sept. 14, 2015

Writing is my form of escapism. It's like reading, but I can change the ending. (I like reading too, and certain TV shows in my DVD collection.) I start writing when a series ends, and need more plot. When I was (much) younger, I wrote fan fiction of everything. I have my own worlds now, of course. That said, my friend gave me a copy of Good Omens for my birthday. We rarely read the same things, but her favorite author teamed up with mine, and she thought I'd enjoy it. I haven't opened the book yet.

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