The Bookworm Turns — an e-book with collected posts from the Bookworm Room

I started blogging in 2004, right before the election, and was hooked.  After years of churning out legal briefs, it was an endless pleasure to write about politics, pop culture, education, social issues, national security, the media, and whatever else caught my attention.  It was wonderful, too, to develop a new writing style, one that allowed me a type of word play and wit denied the legal writer.

My first year’s posts were not memorable.  Over the years, though, after writing about 9,000 posts, ranging from minimalist (“Hey, check this out!”) to lengthily analytical, I had polished my writing, deepened my knowledge base, and sharpened my analytical abilities.  By 2007, I really started to find my voice as a conservative writer and social observer.

As I’ve often told my readers, I will blog no matter what.  It’s a compulsion and, fortunately, a pleasure too.  However, the challenge to try something bigger and more tightly organized than daily posts (which appear in random order as the news cycle demands or as my fancy strikes me) was too strong to resist.  Last summer, I started going through my old posts, culling wheat from chaff.  There was an awful lot of chaff but, thankfully, there was a fair amount of wheat too.

Eventually, I ended up with a few dozen of my favorite posts covering a broad range of topics:  The family history that shaped me; my thoughts about Big Government (I’m against it); the intellectual dishonesty of the Left; my problems with modern American public education (something separate from the good will of most teachers); my strong support for Israel, because I am a Jew, because she is a moral, democratic country, and because she is a staunch American ally; my deep dislike for Obama; observations about pop culture and the media; my strong support and admiration for our military; and several more topics, both profound and mundane.

I ended up with a book that runs about 100,000 words.  If you had it in hard copy, it would be uncomfortable to carry around.  Since this is an e-book, though, transportation is not an issue.  Additionally, because it’s comprised of a series of essays, you can dip in and out of it at will.  In other words, you get a lot of bang for your buck (or, rather, your $4,99), with minimal inconvenience.

You can buy my e-book, The Bookworm Turns : A Secret Conservative in Liberal Land, at either Amazon or at Smashwords.  If you want to buy through Amazon, don’t worry if you don’t have a Kindle.  You can easily download Kindle apps for smart phones, iPads, PCs or Macs.  Smashwords offers even more options for e-books, so check it out.  Also, if you’re opposed to buying a pig in a poke, both Amazon and Smashwords allow you to preview about 20% of the book before you make up your mind whether to buy.

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Here’s what people have been saying about my writing:

“Bookworm has become one of my favorite bloggers. She lives in California and writes on intellectual and domestic political issues, always with a fresh angle.”  — Barry Rubin

“Reading Bookworm’s essays is like intellectual chocolate – highly addicting, except it expands your mind instead of your waistline!” —  JoshuaPundit

“I’ve been a follower of Bookworm for years and am reading the book now.  Her writing is thoughtful, smart, and always entertaining.”  — Right Truth

“One of the best blogs out there is the Bookworm Room – no question. Trust me on this one – I have seen hundreds, maybe thousands come and go since I came online in 2001. I became friends with Bookie in an online forum years ago and I have voraciously read her posts at every opportunity. Witty, intelligent, reflective and often touching, her writings are what we all aspire to accomplish – a connection with others out there and a gift that we wield to express our thoughts in a manner that encourages others to do the same.  [snip]  Bookie has just put together an e-book on her posts that have occurred over time. It is some of the best writing you will ever read. Riveting and compelling, it is absolutely addictive.”  — Noisy Room

“I’ve been reading the Bookworm’s blog almost since she started. Her work is passionate, thoughtful, principled, and (at times) funny. She is an excellent writer – no big surprise as she does it for a living.”  — E. Aagaard

“I just purchased your book. I haven’t been able to put it down since downloading it last night. *** Thank you for such thoughtful, passionate and elegant writing, and for putting it out there in book form.” — Another secret conservative living in the deep blue.

“Yes, I’m 12% in already, have highlighted several passages, and am thoroughly enjoying it.  Woo-hoo!”  — elc

“Bookie is a friend but that’s not why I am recommending this read. I am recommending it because it is an interesting look into the world of a San Francisco Liberal who found conservative values.  That is exceptional enough to deserve your attention.”  — Pierre’s Pink Flamingo Bar

“I got it and I am enjoying reading it very much!  Congratulations!”  — D Wheeler

“I am working my way through my Kindle copy and savoring every word. Very entertaining and easy read with great personal narratives. It entertains, illuminates and instructs but does not hector.  I shall put this on my Christmas list for my Lefty friends.”  — Danny Lemieux

“I am reading Bookworm’s book on my Kindle, it’s not only intellectually exciting, but relevant to today’s news!! And at only $4.99, priceless!!! Get it!!”  — Anonymous

Cross-posted at Right Wing News

Winners at the Watcher’s Council

Even though my computer crash meant reading approximately 24 articles on my iPhone (oy, my eyes!), I still managed to be very impressed by this past week’s entries at the Watcher’s Council.  Here are the winners:

Council Winners

Non-Council Winners

The Bookworm Turns : A Secret Conservative in Liberal Land,
available in e-format for $4.99 at Amazon or Smashwords.

A little blog housekeeping

I have two notices and two requests.  On the notice side:

First, I’m going to be including automatically at the end of future posts links to my book.  (This post has such a notice, although I’d be delighted if any of you can come up with something jazzier, although still short.)  It’s a logical thing to do, so I hope it won’t irritate you regular readers too much.

Second, tomorrow I’ll be publishing a post touting my book, because I’ve been promised a very good link picking up such a post.  I know that for you it will be redundant, but I’m hoping to inspire some new customers who aren’t familiar either with my writing or the fact that I’ve collected my posts into a book.

On the request side:

First, always feel free to click the “retweet” button included in each of my blog post.  I’ve been told that this increases traffic, which is always a nice thing.

Second, if you’ve read my book and liked it, please feel free to leave a glowing, completely over-the-top, rave review at either Amazon or Smashwords.

Thanks so much.

The Bookworm Turns : A Secret Conservative in Liberal Land,
available in e-format for $4.99 at Amazon or Smashwords.

Starting to raise funds now to beat Obama

Obama has already thrown his hat in the ring.  Democrats therefore have a “payee” for their political donations.  The money can start rolling in instantly.

Republicans, however, don’t know yet who is going to be opposing Obama.  Pawlenty?  Trump?  Palin?  Bachmann?  Paul?  Cain?  An as yet unknown candidate?

The fact that we’ll only have a candidate when the primaries wrap up puts a terrible squeeze on fundraising.  There’s always the RNC as a repository but, with an unbelievably important Presidential election coming up, it would be nice to start filling the candidate’s coffers, rather than just contributing to generic Republicans

Showing that conservatives are starting to think outside of the box, there’s a new way to keep Obama from having the only pre-primary fundraising advantage.  Raising Red has come up with a fantastic idea for allowing conservatives to start fundraising now, despite the as-yet-unidentified candidate:

Obama has to go. We can’t wait until August of 2012 to build the war chest to defeat him. Make a donation now, and we’ll put it in escrow so that whoever emerges from the Republican Primary will have a running to start to beat Obama and save America.

That is pro-active thinking.  For that reason alone, Raising Red should be rewarded with some cash.

Were Obama and NATO engaged in Machiavellian brilliance?

Looking back over the past few weeks, one can see a little history play out:

People rose up against Gaddafi.  The West dithered.

The tide was in favor of the Libya rebels.  The West dithered.

The tide turned in Gaddafi’s favor.  The West — i.e., a few NATO states plus Obama — intervened.

Obama was utterly unable to give a coherent explanation for why the U.S. intervened.

A short time after the U.S. committed to Libya (air strikes now, the increased possibility of ground troops later), we learned that the rebels our military is supporting in Libya are al Qaeda members, the same people our military fighting against in Afghanistan and Iraq.

So far so clear.  Here’s where the Machiavellian stuff comes in:

We’re doing a lousy job helping the rebels.  We keep killing them in “accidental” air strikes.  Also, Gaddafi is winning.  Ordinary ineptitude because of a war that has no discernible mission and a lousy NATO command structure?  I don’t think so.  (Cue impressive introductory music.)

I’ve decided that Obama and the NATO states knew all along what was going on.  In the very first instance, when the rebels appeared, they knew that they were al Qaeda.  Obama’s/NATO’s first instinct was to sit on the sidelines, and let Gaddafi and al Qaeda fight it out.  However, when Gaddafi was already winning, Obama and NATO had their brilliant idea:  take advantage of the fact that al Qaeda fighters were being drawn out into the open, pretend to befriend them, and then “accidentally” kill them, all the while making sure that Gaddafi and his troops lead the slaughter on the ground.

It’s this Machivellian motive that explains Obama’s incoherence when he tried to tell the American people why it benefits us to spend millions a day fighting a war in which we have no clearly articulated national interest, even as we’re fighting a war on two other fronts.  It also prevented him from telling us why it’s perfectly reasonable to ally ourselves in Libya with the same people we’re trying to kill in Afghanistan.  If he’d told the truth, his beautiful scheme would have been destroyed.

When you have a president as brilliant as Obama, you just need to understand that everything he does is for the best in this best of all possible worlds.  (And if you don’t know that I’m being sarcastic here, you don’t know me very well.)

S & M Goes Mainstream

DQ again.  Sometime, I’m going to do a post on pop lyrics, on how the young men pine for the love of a young lady while the young ladies are sluts.  But one song so stands out as downright scary that it can’t wait.   

We all know that rap lyrics are filthy and misogynistic.  But I’m talking about a mainstream pop song, number two on Billboard’s Hot 100 chart this week — S & M by Rihanna.  Sample lyrics from the chorus — “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but chains and whips excite me.”  “Come on, come on, come on, I like it-like it.” Take the link and read the whole dreadful thing for yourself.

I suppose we could call this the free market at work.  Such filth sells; that’s why it’s number 2 on the charts.  But the truth is that any song with a strong beat, a catchy hook and Rihanna on vocal will sell.  The message is (at least I hope it is) completely unrelated to the song’s success. 

Why this message?  How many teenage girls will be physically harmed because of this song?  How many sick perverts will be heard to say, “You should like this.  Rihanna does.  It’s fun, baby”?  How many writers, producers, executives, DJs, etc. will have this blood on their hands?

Please, hide your daughters.  Or at least talk to them.  Tell them that chains and whips are not exciting, they are painful.  Tell them that S & M is not cool, it’s sick.  What a bizarre world we live in that such a conversation would ever even be needed.  I’m glad I have sons.  In their late 20s.  Who know better than this.