Summer is here, which means it’s time to put a summer reading list together for your Sea Ranch vacation! We’ve made four suggestions for yours. And have an announcement about a writers conference in the area.
What’s summer without a Summer Reading List?
Remember trying to make a break for the classroom door at the final bell of the school year? You never could make it out without the teacher stuffing that famous summer reading list into your hand.
Somewhere, during your carefree summer, you were expected to have read. Even while on the family vacation, you’d have to pack what seemed like a book of a million pages.
Then, before the summer’s calendar pages were torn to show September the dreaded parental question would be asked:
“Did you read your books on the summer reading list?”
Hopefully, you did. Failing that…
There was always Cliff Notes!
Who Needs the Book When You Have the Movie?
Or better yet, you could always wait for the movie to come out!
Big and Fat or A Sexy Little Romp?
Being the voracious reader I never had the problem of finishing my assigned summer reading list. Actually, my challenge was to find more books to keep me going during the summer months.
I loved historical fiction. Even more, I loved books whose plot would span over many generations of a family. They were my equivalent of the all-day sucker but in literary form.
It would be those big thick books, that would take me well into the middle of summer. My favorites were by James Michener.
Then I’d finish up the summer with a good silly, totally non-intellectual, little summer beach romp of a love story. The kind that Jimmy Buffet wrote. They would be my after reading mint.
Hardback, Paperback, on Tape or Electronic?
It was all so easy back “in the olden times” when the hardest choice was hardback or paperback. Now we have books on tape for on the go “reading,” and books on the internet that are read on iPads, Kindles or even cell phones!
As I face the tantalizing task of selecting this year’s list of summer’s reading…
I must decide not only the author and the title but also the medium.
Marshal McLuhan, in his 1964 work, Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man, asserted that “the medium is the message.”
That is to say, the form with which we use to absorb information has a direct effect on how we perceive the meaning of the text. He goes on to say we develop a symbiotic relationship with the medium we choose to access that message.
Here’s a little video that sums the concepts up nicely:
I think in the end… as I am on the internet so frequently…I’ll be reading my books as books…
The kind with two covers and paper in between.
The other reason is I just hate getting to the good part and having my battery die on me!
What will you choose?
Top 4 Books on Our Sea Ranch Summer Reading List
So with that all settled, on to our Sea Ranch Vacation Summer Reading List!
This summer our goal is to give you a sense of place. As you enjoy great storytelling we hope to connect you to our wonderful Mendonoma area.
Let us know if we were successful.
So with no further adieu…
Sea Ranch Abalone Bay’s Top 4 on the Summer Reading List
1. Sonoma Rose
Set in Sonoma, New York Times bestselling author Jennifer Chiaverini, authored a Prohibition-era novel about one woman’s journey to save her family—and herself. Sonoma Rose tells of grape growers struggling economically against a menacing background of government corruption, suspicion, bootlegging and raids.
Series: Elm Creek Quilts (Book 19)
Paperback: 405 pages
Publisher: Dutton; Reprint edition (January 29, 2013)
Seré Prince Halverson’s uses Northern California’s Russian River as his model of Elbow. This endearing place is filled with happiness for Ella Beene who lives there with her husband Joe and his two young children. But one summer day Joe drowns, leaving Ella alone with Annie and Zach—until his ex-wife, Paige, shows up at the funeral. For three years, Ella believed that Paige had selfishly abandoned her family. Yet—as the custody fight between mother and stepmother ensues—Ella realizes there may be more to the story than Joe ever revealed.
Paperback: 320 pages
Publisher: Plume; Reprint edition (November 27, 2012)
As the book suggests, this mystery is set against the quirky backwoods of Western Sonoma County, from Graton to Guerneville. “Rather than hackneyed drug humor, Schneider focuses on showing a community that . . . has fallen in love with poetry. His charming and original characters should ensure returning readers for any future Augie Boyer outings.” (Publishers Weekly).
Paperback: 304 pages
Publisher: Soft Skull Press; Original edition (February 21, 2012)
Author Elizabeth Tallent, a Pen Faulkner Finalist returns to the writing scene with Mendocino Fire. The book explores moments of fracture and fragmentation; it limns the wilderness of our inner psyche and brilliantly evokes the electric tension of deep emotion. In these pages, Tallent explores expectations met and thwarted, and our never-ending quest to avoid being alone.
Paperback: 272 pages
Publisher: Harper Perennial; Reprint edition (June 21, 2016)
Will You Pen the Next Book set in Mendonoma?
Perhaps when you next visit Sea Ranch and the Mendonoma area, you’ll find it will become your muse to pen the next book for our summer reading list.
We recommend Sea Ranch Abalone Bay as a great writers retreat. You’ll be inspired by the quite, the views, the environment.
Or may want to check out the 27th Annual Mendocino Coast Writers Conference on August 4-6, 2016.
Mendocino Coast Writers Conference
The Mendocino Coast Writers Conference began as a one-day event in 1990 at what was then the Fort Bragg Center for the Arts in the old Daly department store on Main Street. The brainchild of College of the Redwoods English teacher, Marlis Broadhead, the event was conceived as a broadening experience for her creative writing students. The following year, 1991, the conference grew from one day to Friday afternoon, all day Saturday, and even a Sunday morning session. Friday night even featured scenes from an opera in progress written by one of the conference participants.
The 27th Annual Mendocino Coast Writers Conference will be followed by an optional, all-day Publishing Boot Camp hosted at the Mendocino College/Mendocino Coastal campus in Fort Bragg, California.
Participants at the main conference select a morning intensive writing workshop where small groups work closely with the same author for 3 mornings. Choose from poetry, creative nonfiction/memoir, novel, short fiction, emerging writers, or the master class with Les Standiford.
Admission to the Master Class requires jurying is based on manuscript submission. Enrollment is limited to 12 writers.
Features of the Conference
All other writing workshops are open to “first-come, first-served” when registration opens March 15.
They will feature nationally-recognized authors and publishing professionals who are outstanding teachers. The conference is limited to 100 participants who will discover:
|How to develop their literary craft in a supportive community, surrounded by the spectacular scenery and temperate climate of California’s North Coast.|
|A place to exchange ideas with authors, editors, literary agents, and other writers of many talents, ages and backgrounds. Learning happens in workshops, seminars, panels, and during informal social gatherings.|
|Inspiration to explore how writing can shape the world. Whatever the genre, whether fiction, nonfiction, or poetry, words are a powerful instrument of change.|
|A place where you can take creative risks, whether on the page or on the stage, and where you will be inspired to explore new ways to shape your writing.|
|An opportunity for teachers to earn Continuing Education Units (CEUs) through Dominican University.|
What’s on Your Summer Reading List?
Let us know what you thought of our suggested summer reading list. And tell us by what means you read the books- paper or electronic, or while on the run in you ipod or car!
Who knows maybe after booking Sea Ranch Abalone Bay as your writer’s retreat, you’ll have the next great book about Sea Ranch and the Mendonoma area to include in our next summer reading list!