Green Apple is live!

Green Apple Founder – Sonya

Come and check out my new website and community forum – Green Apple

This project has been in development for many months so I am super excited to have it launch into the world!

This site combines all my life’s work and interests. With a focus on health and well-being  supporting local producers and suppliers, and providing helpful information to guide people to be more mindful of their purchases while supporting local small business – what’s not to love!

There are also several regular contributors to the site lined up.

We have Australia’s very own Eco-Mum, Personal Trainer Chris, Reiki Master and Organic Guru Gini, along with surprise posts from a range of inspiring people.

Check out the site, or visit our Facebook page here.

Feel the fear and do it anyway

I have ridden various forms of motorcycle for almost a decade now.

I have only had 1 accident and adding to the mix a part time job at a Scooter store and a full time job at a motorcycle store, my level of experience is above average.

However, there are still some elements of riding that triggers fear for me – one of which is taking my new Vespa GTV 300 on the motorway.

Vespa’s are not designed with speed in mind. Their body is about being nimble at low speeds. At high speeds on an open road the GTV can easily do the speeds required, it doesn’t hold to the road especially well. Any wind gust from passing vehicles or the weather has the GTV dancing all over the road.

Understandably, I do not find riding on motorways especially relaxing.

An opportunity arose for me to put the new GTV on the motorway for around an hour so I could visit a good friend. The night before butterflies emerged. I was fairly concerned that the windy weather was going to make the trip very challenging. This was also the first time I had hit the motorway with this particular Vespa. 

The line “Feel the fear and do it anyway” popped into my head and I tried to let the fear go while also praying to the weather gods that the wind would die down.

The weather gods came through. There was barely a breeze.

I hit the motorway tense and at times rather fearful as trucks flew past causing the Vespa to shudder.

I had set up small milestones in my mind. There was a service station about half way. As I rode past it I yelled out (in my helmet) a big WHOO HOO!

Then there was an overpass about 3/4’s of the way. Once I cleared the overpast I joyfully yelled out (again in my helmet) – I made it! Almost there!

Most of the trip I was telling myself “just relax, you are already doing it. You are fine. You are almost there” which would quell the fear bubbling away in my stomach.

Of course I made it there and back again and enjoyed a lovely afternoon sitting by the water with good coffee and great conversation.

But the experience was a reminder that sometimes you really just need to feel the fear and seriously do it anyway. Fear does not have to stop us from doing things and the sense of achievement you have afterwards is amazing!

And as a tip, try encouraging yourself, or as I did, setting up little milestones you can celebrate. For example, if you fear is time based maybe after the first day you can celebrate that time frame, then a week, a month and a year!

Or maybe you can celebrate the completion with some indulgence and pampering.

My MBA kicks off this coming weekend and as some of you know, I scheduled a trip to Bali for 1 week to celebrate the completion of my first term. No matter what happens during the first term I have Bali to look forward too at the end. It is hugely motivating!

Does something cause your stomach to go flip flop but inside you know you need to move forwards anyway?

C’mon and give it a go – Feel the fear, and do it anyway!

Image

 

Me (Sonya Madden) and a fellow scooter-chick Tish during a club ride, September 2012. Scooter chicks rule!

Overwhelm (full moon crazies!)

Ever have one of those days where you sit at your desk, one eye on your monitor, the other on the door as you secretly plot your escape?

You mind bounces from the idea of running away to putting sharp objects into a co-workers chair.

I had one of those days yesterday. It was energetically overwhelming. to say the least.

Part of me wants to chalk it up to “Full moon craziness” (full moon a few days ago in Australia), and the other part of me wanted to stand up in the middle of the office and scream very very loudly.

Of course professionally screaming may not be a wise move so I’ve put together 5 steps to get you through when presented with an equally challenging day.

1. “Now just one minute…”

Yep… just one. Take one little minute. Take one little minute to breath and let go. For me I even close my eyes, let out an exaggerated sigh, and feel a million times better. Just one minute.

2. Steer clear of the people who are triggering you.

For me that meant pretty much everyone else so I dug up some very consuming tasks, rolled up my sleeves and got on with them. Before I knew it hours had passed and I felt better because my time had been UBER productive.

3. Insure that when you leave the office, your work stays at work!

This may not be possible everyday, but on any days where it is all getting a bit too much and you are visualising a certain someone’s head exploding… well that is probably a day where you need to just have a night to yourself…. and TURN OFF YOUR PHONE! If you can’t do all night… try for 1 hour.

4. Take your lunch break – take it I say!

Go for a wander. Enjoy eating your sambo under a tree in the park. Read a book. Listen to your ipod. Takes some chill time right in the middle of the day and enjoy. You deserve it.

5. Let it go

Come the end of the day, there will be some things you cannot change – no matter how much you recycle the thoughts in your mind – these things you just need to let go. Take a long hot bath and shift your thinking to the nice things from your day to stop the negative thought process. How was your lunch break? Was someone especially helpful today? Do you have some great plans for the weekend? Keep clear of the “If only…” thoughts – they will not serve you.

Do you have some tried and true dealing with overwhelm tips? Please add them in the comments area if you are happy to share.

Green Apple Magazine – get ready!

New site coming soon!

I am very excited to begin promoting my new project “Green Apple Magazine” which will be live very soon.

“Green Apple” will be a website and online publication focusing on Greener Living in the Modern World.  The site will also have contributions from some of Australia’s leading Eco-Friendly businesses, along with health and wellness professionals, therapists and practitioners.

The project has been brewing in the wings but I am so thrilled it is almost out in the world.

To keep up to date on progress and begin interacting with the team please follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

Stay tuned for more updates!

http://www.greenapplemagazine.com/

Patong’s tragedy

My time in Thailand was amazing but we were lightly touched by tragedy during our time abroad which has given me a mighty big lesson in gratitude.

Thursday the  16th of August was the day our group set aside for our big night out in Patong. We were a large group – large enough to warrant a mini bus for the 45min journey to the bustling night club district.

Several of us had posted on facebook that Thursday night would be a night to remember.

Our group consisted of myself, my two younger brothers, my two younger male cousins (also brothers), the newly wed couple (my sister and her husband) and one of my sisters friends – total was 7. We arrived in Patong around 7pm, grabbed some dinner then headed down the main street which is home to a massive number of booming night clubs.

I cannot do this street justice with words – anyone who has been there at night will understand why. It is a surreal scene  chock full of tourists, locals, working girls, exotic animals, blasting music, disco lights, smells and heat.

We wandered a short distance before moving into one of the bigger bars where our night begun with large bucket sized cocktails, red bull, and performances by Go-Go dancers on the bar top.

Our night ended around 1am which was the time we had asked our mini-bus driver to return to collect our group. We were all smiles and laughing after some wild dancing and drinking –  we were oblivious to the drama playing out in Patong.

We met for breakfast the next morning to regroup after our evenning. The newly wed couple recieved a messsage from a friend explaining there had been a fire in Patong the night before and were we all okay. Further information came through indicating the fire was at a place called the Tiger Bar – which we had spent time in. A little shocked that we had not known about this we all set off to find out more information.

The information I have gathered is that the bar caught on fire sometime after 2am. The fire was caused by either lightening hitting a large transformer box outside the night club, or, water dripping onto exposed wires in the nightlclubs ceiling.

Four people died in that fire. All 4 had run into the toilets to escape the blaze and became trapped.

Many others were injured. Broken legs from people jumping out windows. Burns from those also caught in the blaze.

The event was heart breaking and shocking.

We travelled back to Patong the next day to see the bar that only 12 hours prior had been full of life. The entrance was now tapped off with police going back and forth. Tourists took photos. I silently thanked the universe that we had decided to move on before the fire broke out.

The event spooked me. It so easily could have been myself and my family caught in the blaze. So easy it really rattled me. Our whole group were fairly quiet about the event. Almost realising how fortunate we were to not be there at the same moment.

I felt so close to the drama and yet untouched.

If we had been in that particular nightclub, I know for fact the first thing we would have done is made sure we were all together. Being a group of 7 this may or may not have been wise. Witnesses said that the fire ignited rapidly causing a large fire ball type blaze to engulf the top floor of the bar within seconds.

I notified people via facebook that our group were safe. Family members indicated they had heard the news in Australia and were extremely happy to hear we were not involved.

I thought of the family members of those who were involved.

Perhaps they were like us. A group of tourists just out for one night of fun that turned sour.

I thanked the universe for encouraging our group to move on from that bar to another night club in the street.

Gratitude… filled to the brim with it at the moment and my heart goes out the friends and family of the 4 souls lost in the fire.

 

The work of Forgiveness

Forgiveness is something most people know they should practice – but essentially ignore.

Why we do not heed the warnings around the power of forgiveness?

I have read countless articles and books all covering the topic of forgiveness.

Examples of how dis-ease and unhappiness can follow when we do not forgive are common.

However what I have found lacking in most of the material is any sense of realism.

For me, forgiveness is not a switch I can just flick on or off. Forgiveness takes work – sometimes allot of work. Sometimes it will be instant, sometimes it will take years.

Last year was a big year of transformation for me and many around me.

Discovering the words “till death do us part” actually means “till someone new comes along”  is never easy for anyone to go through. Add to the mix girlfriends/boyfriends/children/families and you have a great concoction of emotion, resentment, blame and anger.

Some days, at any random moment, it would hit me like a boulder crushing my chest. So much anger. Resentment. Pain.

Each day I would contemplate or visualise in my mind a way to pass those emotions on to the other parties. Each day I had to work at  stopping this train of thought. Bitterness serves no one.

Sometimes acts of forgiveness are fairly easy. Perhaps enough time has past that you can forgive and move on never to think of it again. Sometimes the act was minor and you are happy to move forward.

Sometimes forgiveness requires daily effort to mentally stop, focus and think or say the words “I forgive you” to yourself or to those involved. Sometimes it may be someone you have never even met who may not be aware of what is playing out for you but you know you need to forgive.

Sometimes forgiveness never comes.

I do believe we are victims of situations of our own making.

I created what unfolded for me last year. I did not heed my instincts nor the warning signs. Once the cracks started to show, I unconsciously pried them wide open – that was the beginning of the end. Curiosity can kill the cat.

I have had to work at not only forgiving others but forgiving myself. 

Forgiving myself is something I find much much harder.

Logically I know I did what was right for me at the time. I did what my heart and soul called me to do. I do not regret my actions nor wish for a different outcome. But I have remorse for the pain caused to family and I still have anger and bitterness towards the other party.

This week I learnt that someone, who like me is in their 30s,  is beginning a battle against breast and lymphoma cancer.

We spoke of diet and lifestyle however the person was a vegan and also fairly active. I was baffled. To me, they were doing everything we are ‘told’ is the right thing to do.

This is not the first time cancer has crossed into my life in a way that defies all reasoning. When I was 28 I watched a person I knew who at the age of 30, did battle with a rare form of cancer which grew from nothing to life threatening in months. He was also fit and healthy and a new father at the time.

As cancer becomes more and more prevalent in younger members of society I cannot help but ask why?

What is it we are doing so wrong?

I once read that cancer has been attributed to emotions. It has been suggested cancer can be trigger by unexpressed anger and or resentment.

We may never know what is the key to unlocking the cure, but as I watch people around me falling ill to a life threatening disease I know we are missing something bigger, more important, and more crucial then just good diet and exercise.

So I suggest we no longer disregard the power of forgiveness – forgiveness of others and of ourselves.

I suggest that forgiveness may in fact save our lives and therefore I think it is certainly worth trying for a few minutes each day.

Nia Bali – book now!

Nia Bali Retreat

Nia Bali Retreat Dec 2012

The time has come for those interested in spending a glorious week in Bali enjoying Nia, Yoga, sensational food, massages by the pool and great company, to book! Plus Illl be there *wink*

If you would like to join Anya Phelan (Australian Nia Instructor) on this fantastic trip please email her asap as the Early Bird discount rate closes today.

I feel rather indulgent at the moment. I am one week away from my trip to Thailand for my sisters wedding… and just paid for my trip to Bali with Anya in December. It is a good week!

If you would like to know more about Nia (Australia) please check out our website – http://www.niaaustralia.com.au/

Happy Dancing and see you in Bali!

Being a Step-parent is no fairy-tale.

This post has been in my drafts for months pending legal settlements. I am now free to share my story and although a little off topic from my usual career focused information, I feel is important to share. Please note that for privacy reasons, names have been omitted.

We met on a blind date at the Italian Forum in Leichardt, Sydney. A water feature created some ambient noise as we dined at a small restaurant known to his family. He did all the talking which was fine with me.  Towards the end of the evening the words “I have a daughter” hung in the air before I responded with “Really? How old?” and the rest is history.

Yeah right!

For me, adjusting to the label “step-mother” did take some serious work. In fact I fought the label till the last day insisting I just be referred to by name.

Images from classic fairy-tales like ‘Cinderella’ flashed through my mind. Fear of warts suddenly appearing on my face along with a hunch and cruel sneer haunted me. The reality was less dramatic of course but I still smile when I think back to all the stereotypes I worked through as his five year old daughter entered my life.

The challenge was of course not entirely my own. The child had some serious adjusting of her own to contend with and at such a young age, her challenges were far more open for the world to see.

I was told I was her father’s first serious relationships since the child’s mother and as a result I received the full brunt of the child’s insecurities.

I was faced with frequent interruptions during moments of intimacy with her father. Sitting next to her father on the couch would prompt her to dive between us, nestling into his chest while simultaneously smirking my way. I come from divorced parents myself so this allowed me probably more patience than most but to say it was easy would be untrue.

This was during the early days and things soon moved into more of a harmonious rhythm.  I began to develop a mountain more understanding around the challenges of being a parent. I had no children of my own and to land a 5-year-old instantly was unexpected to say the least, and exhausting. However I was determined to persist. I had always been told I had a kind heart and compassionate nature plus I held a volume of sympathy for this little blonde firecracker. She had not had her father in her life as much as I had at the same age and this was evident in her need for constant attention and validation. She was resilient but she had been given a hard lot in life.

During 2008 the child witnessed both her biological parents marry – confirmation that her parents would not be getting back together – ever. Comments such as “Why don’t you go back to living with mummy?” often came up in her conversations until that point then it suddenly stopped.  Neither of my parents has remarried but I suspect at such a young age her parent’s weddings left their mark on the child.

Unfortunately my marriage to her father did not last. Four and a half years we were together, two and half of which we were married.

During the few years our relationship endured we included the child in all family events for my side of the family which usually involved my siblings and my parents. The child instantly inherited a new family and seemed to enjoy the attention of being the only grandchild. My father in particular, a master at shunning labels, announced from the outset that there was no such thing as “step-children” in his home, only children.  To him, that was that. She was family.

Christmas soon became focused around my step-daughter. We all looked forward to our portion of her heavily scheduled Christmas day to watch her unwrap each gift and exclaim “Just what I always wanted!” before pushing it aside and moving onto the next gift. The child wanted for nothing. Existing between four sets of extended families now that both parents were married, her Christmas wish lists were always fulfilled.

Her life was carefully scheduled by an attentive mother to insure all grandparents, parents and relatives received equal time with the blonde beauty. We fell at the end of the priority list however we accepted our status and enjoyed the time regardless.

As the ashes of my marriage scattered to the wind the child remained forefront in my mind. Her father, not one for maturity, utilised threats to push me from her life. While telling me we would have an opportunity to re-define my relationship with his child at a later date, he had gone and told the child she would never see me again. Upon hearing this sometime later my heart broke into a 1000 angry pieces. The blonde princess, who curled into my chest and came to love me and was apparently asking to see me, had been told I would remain a memory of her past and that would never change. We had not even been given an opportunity to say our goodbyes – not that a goodbye would have been easy.

Legally step-parents have minimal rights in this situation. Although a step-parent does have the option of perusing visitation it is a lengthy and costly process through the courts. I did consider the option – considered it very seriously. However I was fuelled by anger and resentment rather than the best of intentions for the child. Once I had taken time to consider my actions fully I realised walking away is the best option for the child – burying her father in expensive legal paperwork does not benefit her much in the long run. The child’s father prides himself on being seen as the ‘victor’ in most situations so the choice to stay compliant was a hard one to make. I still have moments where I hover over the words “proceed” in response to my lawyers request to commence legalities. I am only human after all plus what I perceive to be injustice and manipulation of a child are two things I really struggle to stand by and watch unfolding.

But sometimes you have to stop thinking about yourself and think of others. Maybe I will change my mind, but for now I am doing my best to hold my head high.

Being a step-parent, and now ex-step-parent, was by far the most challenging and rewarding thing I have done in my life. As a step-parent you always fall second to the biological parent which does take some serious getting used too. After the initial transition period I found my niche by behaving more like the fun-Aunt. The child did not need any more authority figures so I moved into the “let’s have some fun” space. This saw the child transition from seeing me as competition for her father’s attention, to the person who she would happily play hairdresser and dress-ups with for hours. I enjoyed watching her practice new dance moves while dressed in her latest pink tutu more than I ever thought I would. Assisting her with the choice of clothes for the day and braiding her long blonde hair were highlights for me during those few years and each time I reflect back on those moments my heart clenches.

I am told being a parent is the most rewarding thing a person can do during their lifetime. The glimpse I had of it while being a step parent certainly confirmed this statement.

Of course just like parents, not all step-parents are equal, but most have the best of intentions. I share my story to shed some light on the role of a step-parent in the hope the future will hold more sensitivity to the position and its challenges.

The step-parenting role is challenging from all sides. Blended families are becoming more and more frequent in society as marriages and relationships fail. Sad facts I for one have lived through.

If you happen to be new to the role of step-parent I offer you the most important piece of advice once given to me – be patient!

Yes you will always fall second or third to the child’s parents (as we should) but that does not mean you are less of a person. Find your niche, carve your own path and remember to enjoy the small moments for as I discovered, they may not be around tomorrow.

Rory Gilmore Reading list

Inspired by http://bookreviews.me.uk/rory-gilmore-reading-challenge/

I have been a bit of a ‘classic book’ fan ever since my teens years. I remember finding “For whom the bell tolls” when I was a teenager and loving it! Surprise considering the language is old English. I do find myself often overwhelmed by the sheer volume of classic novels available and unsure as to how to navigate their vastness. I came across and idea on twitter which is a reading list based on the show “Gilmore Girls” – every book below has feature in an episode. Considering the volume of books in the list, that is impressive!

Some I have already read – and I started the 1000+ pages of “Little Dorrit” on the weekend which will probably take me a few weeks to get through. If anyone would like to join my quest to read all the books on this list, leave your details in the comments below.

I will also continue adding my little book reviews as per usual for anyone who is keen on some insider information.

Gilmore Girls Reading list

1984 by George Orwell
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll – read – July 2010
The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay by Michael Chabon
An American Tragedy by Theodore Dreiser
Angela’s Ashes by Frank McCourt
–> Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy – read
–> Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank – read
Archidamian War by Donald Kagan
The Art of Fiction by Henry James
The Art of War by Sun Tzu
As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner
Atonement by Ian McEwan
Autobiography of a Face by Lucy Grealy
The Awakening by Kate Chopin
Babe by Dick King-Smith
Backlash: The Undeclared War Against American Women by Susan Faludi
Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress by Dai Sijie
Bel Canto by Ann Patchett
–> The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath – read
Beloved by Toni Morrison
Beowulf: A New Verse Translation by Seamus Heaney
The Bhagava Gita
The Bielski Brothers: The True Story of Three Men Who Defied the Nazis, Built a Village in the Forest, and Saved 1,200 Jews by Peter Duffy
Bitch in Praise of Difficult Women by Elizabeth Wurtzel
A Bolt from the Blue and Other Essays by Mary McCarthy
Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
Brick Lane by Monica Ali
Bridgadoon by Alan Jay Lerner
Candide by Voltaire – read – June 2010
The Canterbury Tales by Chaucer
Carrie by Stephen King
Catch-22 by Joseph Heller
The Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger – read
–> Charlotte’s Web by E. B. White – read
The Children’s Hour by Lillian Hellman
Christine by Stephen King
A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens – read – December 2009
A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess
The Code of the Woosters by P.G. Wodehouse
The Collected Short Stories by Eudora Welty
The Collected Stories of Eudora Welty by Eudora Welty
A Comedy of Errors by William Shakespeare
Complete Novels by Dawn Powell
The Complete Poems by Anne Sexton
Complete Stories by Dorothy Parker
A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole
The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas père
Cousin Bette by Honor’e de Balzac
Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky
The Crimson Petal and the White by Michel Faber – started and not finished
— > The Crucible by Arthur Miller – Read
Cujo by Stephen King
— > The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon – read
Daughter of Fortune by Isabel Allende
David and Lisa by Dr Theodore Issac Rubin M.D
David Copperfield by Charles Dickens
The Da Vinci -Code by Dan Brown – read
Dead Souls by Nikolai Gogol
Demons by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
— > Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller – read
Deenie by Judy Blume
— > The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America by Erik Larson – read
The Dirt: Confessions of the World’s Most Notorious Rock Band by Tommy Lee, Vince Neil, Mick Mars and Nikki Sixx
The Divine Comedy by Dante
The Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood by Rebecca Wells
Don Quijote by Cervantes
Driving Miss Daisy by Alfred Uhrv
Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson – read – 2009
Edgar Allan Poe: Complete Tales & Poems by Edgar Allan Poe
Eleanor Roosevelt by Blanche Wiesen Cook
The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test by Tom Wolfe
Ella Minnow Pea: A Novel in Letters by Mark Dunn
Eloise by Kay Thompson
Emily the Strange by Roger Reger
— > Emma by Jane Austen – read
Empire Falls by Richard Russo
Encyclopedia Brown: Boy Detective by Donald J. Sobol
Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton
Ethics by Spinoza
Europe through the Back Door, 2003 by Rick Steves
Eva Luna by Isabel Allende
Everything Is Illuminated by Jonathan Safran Foer
Extravagance by Gary Krist
Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury – started and not finished
Fahrenheit 9/11 by Michael Moore
The Fall of the Athenian Empire by Donald Kagan
Fat Land: How Americans Became the Fattest People in the World by Greg Critser
Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas by Hunter S. Thompson
— > The Fellowship of the Ring: Book 1 of The Lord of the Ring by J. R. R. Tolkien (TBR) – read
Fiddler on the Roof by Joseph Stein
— > The Five People You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom – read
Finnegan’s Wake by James Joyce
Fletch by Gregory McDonald
Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes
The Fortress of Solitude by Jonathan Lethem
The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand
Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
Franny and Zooey by J. D. Salinger
Freaky Friday by Mary Rodgers
Galapagos by Kurt Vonnegut
Gender Trouble by Judith Butler
George W. Bushism: The Slate Book of the Accidental Wit and Wisdom of our 43rd President by Jacob Weisberg
Gidget by Fredrick Kohner
Girl, Interrupted by Susanna Kaysen
The Gnostic Gospels by Elaine Pagels
The Godfather: Book 1 by Mario Puzo
The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy
Goldilocks and the Three Bears by Alvin Granowsky
Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
The Good Soldier by Ford Maddox Ford
The Gospel According to Judy Bloom
The Graduate by Charles Webb
The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
Great Expectations by Charles Dickens
The Group by Mary McCarthy
Hamlet by William Shakespeare
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J. K. Rowling
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J. K. Rowling
A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius by Dave Eggers
Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad (TBR)
Helter Skelter: The True Story of the Manson Murders by Vincent Bugliosi and Curt Gentry (TBR)
Henry IV, part I by William Shakespeare
Henry IV, part II by William Shakespeare
Henry V by William Shakespeare
High Fidelity by Nick Hornby
The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire by Edward Gibbon
Holidays on Ice: Stories by David Sedaris
The Holy Barbarians by Lawrence Lipton
House of Sand and Fog by Andre Dubus III (Lpr)
The House of the Spirits by Isabel Allende
How to Breathe Underwater by Julie Orringer
How the Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr. Seuss
How the Light Gets in by M. J. Hyland
Howl by Allen Gingsburg
The Hunchback of Notre Dame by Victor Hugo
The Iliad by Homer
I’m with the Band by Pamela des Barres
In Cold Blood by Truman Capote
Inferno by Dante
Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence and Robert E. Lee
Iron Weed by William J. Kennedy
It Takes a Village by Hillary Clinton
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë
The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan
Julius Caesar by William Shakespeare
The Jumping Frog by Mark Twain
The Jungle by Upton Sinclair
Just a Couple of Days by Tony Vigorito
The Kitchen Boy: A Novel of the Last Tsar by Robert Alexander
Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly by Anthony Bourdain
The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini – started and not finished
Lady Chatterleys’ Lover by D. H. Lawrence
The Last Empire: Essays 1992-2000 by Gore Vidal
Leaves of Grass by Walt Whitman
The Legend of Bagger Vance by Steven Pressfield
Less Than Zero by Bret Easton Ellis
Letters to a Young Poet by Rainer Maria Rilke
Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them by Al Franken
— > Life of Pi by Yann Martel – read
Little Dorrit by Charles Dickens – reading now!
The Little Locksmith by Katharine Butler Hathaway
The Little Match Girl by Hans Christian Andersen
Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
Living History by Hillary Rodham Clinton
Lord of the Flies by William Golding
The Lottery: And Other Stories by Shirley Jackson
The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold
The Love Story by Erich Segal
— > Macbeth by William Shakespeare – read
Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert
The Manticore by Robertson Davies
Marathon Man by William Goldman
The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov
Memoirs of a Dutiful Daughter by Simone de Beauvoir
Memoirs of General W. T. Sherman by William Tecumseh Sherman
Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris
The Meaning of Consuelo by Judith Ortiz Cofer
Mencken’s Chrestomathy by H. R. Mencken
The Merry Wives of Windsro by William Shakespeare
The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka
Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides
The Miracle Worker by William Gibson
Moby Dick by Herman Melville
The Mojo Collection: The Ultimate Music Companion by Jim Irvin
Moliere: A Biography by Hobart Chatfield Taylor
A Monetary History of the United States by Milton Friedman
Monsieur Proust by Celeste Albaret
A Month Of Sundays: Searching For The Spirit And My Sister by Julie Mars
A Moveable Feast by Ernest Hemingway
— > Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf
Mutiny on the Bounty by Charles Nordhoff and James Norman Hall
My Lai 4: A Report on the Massacre and It’s Aftermath by Seymour M. Hersh
My Life as Author and Editor by H. R. Mencken
My Life in Orange: Growing Up with the Guru by Tim Guest
Myra Waldo’s Travel and Motoring Guide to Europe, 1978 by Myra Waldo
— > My Sister’s Keeper by Jodi Picoult
The Naked and the Dead by Norman Mailer
The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco
The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri
The Nanny Diaries by Emma McLaughlin
Nervous System: Or, Losing My Mind in Literature by Jan Lars Jensen
New Poems of Emily Dickinson by Emily Dickinson
The New Way Things Work by David Macaulay
Nickel and Dimed by Barbara Ehrenreich
Night by Elie Wiesel
Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen – read
The Norton Anthology of Theory and Criticism by William E. Cain, Laurie A. Finke, Barbara E. Johnson, John P. McGowan
Novels 1930-1942: Dance Night/Come Back to Sorrento, Turn, Magic Wheel/Angels on Toast/A Time to be Born by Dawn Powell
Notes of a Dirty Old Man by Charles Bukowski
Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck
Old School by Tobias Wolff
On the Road by Jack Kerouac
One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey
One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
The Opposite of Fate: Memories of a Writing Life by Amy Tan
Oracle Night by Paul Auster
Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood
Othello by Shakespeare
Our Mutual Friend by Charles Dickens
The Outbreak of the Peloponnesian War by Donald Kagan
Out of Africa by Isac Dineson
The Outsiders by S. E. Hinton
A Passage to India by E.M. Forster
The Peace of Nicias and the Sicilian Expedition by Donald Kagan
The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
Peyton Place by Grace Metalious
The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde
Pigs at the Trough by Arianna Huffington
Pinocchio by Carlo Collodi
Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk Legs McNeil and Gillian McCain
The Polysyllabic Spree by Nick Hornby – read
The Portable Dorothy Parker by Dorothy Parker
The Portable Nietzche by Fredrich Nietzche
The Price of Loyalty: George W. Bush, the White House, and the Education of Paul O’Neill by Ron Suskind
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen – read
Property by Valerie Martin
Pushkin: A Biography by T. J. Binyon
Pygmalion by George Bernard Shaw
Quattrocento by James Mckean
A Quiet Storm by Rachel Howzell Hall
Rapunzel by Grimm Brothers – read
The Raven by Edgar Allan Poe
The Razor’s Edge by W. Somerset Maugham
Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Memoir in Books by Azar Nafisi
Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier
Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm by Kate Douglas Wiggin
–> The Red Tent by Anita Diamant – read
Rescuing Patty Hearst: Memories From a Decade Gone Mad by Virginia Holman
— > The Return of the King: The Lord of the Rings Book 3 by J. R. R. Tolkien (TBR)
R Is for Ricochet by Sue Grafton
Rita Hayworth by Stephen King
Robert’s Rules of Order by Henry Robert
Roman Holiday by Edith Wharton
— >Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare
— >A Room of One’s Own by Virginia Woolf
A Room with a View by E. M. Forster
Rosemary’s Baby by Ira Levin
The Rough Guide to Europe, 2003 Edition
Sacred Time by Ursula Hegi
Sanctuary by William Faulkner
Savage Beauty: The Life of Edna St. Vincent Millay by Nancy Milford
Say Goodbye to Daisy Miller by Henry James
The Scarecrow of Oz by Frank L. Baum
The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne – read
Seabiscuit: An American Legend by Laura Hillenbrand
The Second Sex by Simone de Beauvoir
— > The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd – started and not finished
Secrets of the Flesh: A Life of Colette by Judith Thurman
Selected Hotels of Europe
Selected Letters of Dawn Powell: 1913-1965 by Dawn Powell
Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen – read
A Separate Peace by John Knowles
Several Biographies of Winston Churchill
Sexus by Henry Miller
The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
Shane by Jack Shaefer
The Shining by Stephen King
Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse
S Is for Silence by Sue Grafton
Slaughter-house Five by Kurt Vonnegut
Small Island by Andrea Levy – on my book pile
Snows of Kilimanjaro by Ernest Hemingway
Snow White and Rose Red by Grimm Brothers – read
Social Origins of Dictatorship and Democracy: Lord and Peasant in the Making of the Modern World by Barrington Moore
The Song of Names by Norman Lebrecht
Song of the Simple Truth: The Complete Poems of Julia de Burgos by Julia de Burgos
The Song Reader by Lisa Tucker
Songbook by Nick Hornby
The Sonnets by William Shakespeare
Sonnets from the Portuegese by Elizabeth Barrett Browning
— > Sophie’s Choice by William Styron – read
The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner
Speak, Memory by Vladimir Nabokov
Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers by Mary Roach
— > The Story of My Life by Helen Keller – read
A Streetcar Named Desiree by Tennessee Williams
Stuart Little by E. B. White
Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway
Swann’s Way by Marcel Proust
Swimming with Giants: My Encounters with Whales, Dolphins and Seals by Anne Collett
Sybil by Flora Rheta Schreiber
A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens
Tender Is The Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald
Term of Endearment by Larry McMurtry
Time and Again by Jack Finney
The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger – read
To Have and Have Not by Ernest Hemingway
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee – read
The Tragedy of Richard III by William Shakespeare
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith
The Trial by Franz Kafka
The True and Outstanding Adventures of the Hunt Sisters by Elisabeth Robinson
Truth & Beauty: A Friendship by Ann Patchett
— > Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom – read
Ulysses by James Joyce
The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath 1950-1962 by Sylvia Plath
Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe – started and not finished
Unless by Carol Shields
Valley of the Dolls by Jacqueline Susann
The Vanishing Newspaper by Philip Meyers
Vanity Fair by William Makepeace Thackeray – read
Velvet Underground’s The Velvet Underground and Nico (Thirty Three and a Third series) by Joe Harvard
The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides
Waiting for Godot by Samuel Beckett
Walden by Henry David Thoreau
Walt Disney’s Bambi by Felix Salten
War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy
We Owe You Nothing – Punk Planet: The Collected Interviews edited by Daniel Sinker
What Colour is Your Parachute? 2005 by Richard Nelson Bolles
What Happened to Baby Jane by Henry Farrell
When the Emperor Was Divine by Julie Otsuka
–> Who Moved My Cheese? Spencer Johnson – read
Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf by Edward Albee
— > Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West by Gregory Maguire – read
The Wizard of Oz by Frank L. Baum
Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë
The Yearling by Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings
The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion
A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole