Tuesday, February 9, 2010

How Streaming Video Has Changed My Life

Please welcome our guest, author Kate Carlisle

Thanks to all the Cozy Chicks for having me here today!

For the first time in my life, I can honestly say I don’t watch much TV, and it’s all due to the fact that I’m living my dream. I’m a published writer – even got to see my name on the New York Times extended list with my very first book, Homicide in Hardcover (right behind Cozy Chick Lorna Barrett!). Talk about a dream!

So of course I don’t have time for TV these days. I’m too busy partying with my jet-setting friends on the beaches of St. Tropez and down the Aspen slopes. My personal stylist does most of my shopping, of course, but I must appear at the spa in person to get plucked and waxed and otherwise de-follicled. (Beauty is hard when you’re world-famous -- and de-follicling is tricky, as you can see.)

Oh, okay. That’s not why I haven’t had time to watch much TV lately. The truth is, I have a new book out now (If Books Could Kill, the second of my Bibliophile Mysteries series), and two – count ‘em, two – deadlines looming. Between helping to get the word out about my latest release and writing my heart out on books three and four, I simply can’t get my schedule aligned with the networks’.Thank goodness for online video streaming!

Seriously.

I could live without TV if I had to … but why? Reading is fabulous. As you might guess, I adore reading. But reading is a participatory activity. After a long day of wringing every ounce of intelligence and creativity from my spongey brain, sometimes I simply don’t want to think anymore. I want to kick back and be passively entertained. I want to be the boob in front of the boob tube.

Many of my favorite shows are lighthearted mysteries, much like my books. And many of these shows are available online 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. In today’s world, we can catch our favorites on our schedule, no matter when the network muckety-mucks decide to put them on the air. Remember “appointment TV,” where you had to be home at 9 p.m. every Tuesday night for Veronica Mars? Thing of the past, baby! That’s so 20th Century! Now the world revolves around me.

As it should. (Snort!)

So no, I don’t watch much TV these days … but I watch a lot of computer! Some of my favorite shows available for free online:
  • Castle – I’m in love with Nathan Fillion, but then, who isn’t? This show is witty and fast-paced. Kind of reminds me of Moonlighting, but a little less frantic. And oh, mystery writer Richard Castle really does live the glamorous life I described above, so while I watch, I can also daydream that I’ve risen to his stratosphere. (If you can’t get the ABC video player to work with Internet Explorer, try using Firefox, which you can download for free. I don’t know why it works, but it does!)
  • Psych – This show is completely implausible, but it knows it, and it lets us know that it’s in on the fun. And that just makes it more fun and mindless to watch, so it’s all good!
  • The Closer – Kyra Sedgwick is fantastic as Deputy Police Chief Brenda Leigh Johnson. She’s my favorite kind of heroine. Professional, intelligent, really good at what she does… but not so good at other parts in her life. I can relate to Brenda’s weakness for chocolate and her weakness for the even more delectable Fritz.
  • Ghost Whisperer – Have you noticed a theme here? Every one of my favorite shows has a cute man in it! (My guy on Psych is DulĂ© Hill.) When I’m vegging out in front of the computer, I like a little eye candy. Jennifer Love Hewitt is fabulous, too, of course. Again, accomplished at work, with a vulnerability that allows me to connect with her.
Are you like me, too busy to watch TV? I know the Cozy Chicks can relate (especially Kate Collins and Heather Webber, who also have new books out this month! Congrats, ladies!). What is your favorite TV show? What do you like about it? Do you watch it on TV or on your computer? Have you ever tried video streaming? Has it changed your life?

60 comments:

Jessica said...

Hi Kate! Glad to have you! I've not watched a lot of shows on my computer...maybe I'll give it a shot! I'm a DVR Junkie...I record everything! One of these days I'll get to sit down and watch them lol! I love the legal/crime thriller type shows...NCIS, CSI, Law and Order, etc. :-)

Marissa said...

Mine are Castle and White Collar. I don't know if there is much else I really watch LOL

Dave Chaudoir said...

Kate, you obviously have great taste in TV shows! For some reason I missed your books, but I will correct that today and place my order. I love Lorna's Booktown series and I'm really excited to find yours! Mysteries are wonderful... I recently saw an interview online with Carolyn Hart where she talks about the social relevance of mysteries and how a murder is not really a murder.

Andrea C. said...

Like Jessica, I am pretty much in love with my DVR. I don't think I watch anything live anymore - just record and watch at my leisure...and I love too many shows to name - of course, all this tv watching doesn't get in the way of my cozy reading! :)

Katie said...

I'm in nursing school so I miss the shows I used to watch on Wednesday nights. I spend quite a bit of Thursday morning catching up or over the weekend.

I watch (when able to): House (but behind due to Fox not loading for me!), Scrubs, Glee, Mercy, Ugly Betty, Grey's Anatomy, and Private Practice

Kate Carlisle said...

Good morning! What a nice, warm welcome! Thank you!!! I really do feel all cozy inside here with the cozy chicks. ;)

By the way, if you're on Facebook, I hope you'll become a fan of my page. Facebook.com/KateCarlisleBooks.

Jessica, Aren't DVRs amazing? It still boggles my mind that we can pause live TV. So not only did someone come up with this brilliant idea, they figured out how to make it work! People are amazing.

Kate Carlisle said...

Marissa, LOL! Great choices! Castle and White Collar are two of my favorites.

Dave, that article sounds very interesting. If you happen to remember where you saw the interview, I'd love the link. Thanks for ordering If Books Could Kill. I hope you love it!

Kate Carlisle said...

Andrea, If I had to give up TV or my cozy reading, the TV would be out the window in a heartbeat. Nothing gets in the way of reading!

Kate Carlisle said...

Katie, So I'm curious. Is nursing school having an impact in how you watch House, Grey's Anatomy, and Private Practice? (I won't even touch Scrubs! LOL) As you learn more about medicine, do you get pulled out of the shows by inaccuracies?

Katie said...

yes and no. I'm realizing a lot of it is WAY off, but I still enjoy the story lines so I watch. most of it is so I have mindless TV to watch when I'm studying. House is still fairly accurate from what I can tell. the others, not so much.

Kate Carlisle said...

Well, I hope that Scrubs isn't accurate! LOL I'd be terrified if I ever had to go to that hospital. That's interesting, that House is pretty accurate. It's a very smart show. And of all of them, it seems to be the one that is the most about actual medicine. In fact, House is at heart a mystery series. The mystery each week centers around what is wrong with the patient, and House is the surly, hard-bitten detective.

Vicki said...

Good Morning! I love watching episodes on the computer, especially if I'm trying to catch up on a series. Husband "tapes" all our regular shows on the computer so we almost never watch live tv anymore. We definitely watch shows on our own schedule.

Dave Chaudoir said...

Kate, Carolyn Hart seems to use some version of the quote in many of her interviews; here is one from an interview she did with "JoAnna Carl". Hart: "I write mysteries because we live in an unjust world. Mystery readers and writers long for a world where justice is served, goodness admired, and wrongs righted. We don‚t find that world in our everyday lives and that's why we revere mysteries, both reading and writing them." There are many other links to interviews with her, some video, on CarolynHart.com.

Best regards,

Mason Canyon said...

Congratulations on the new book. I just love the cover, it's so relaxing and intriguing at the same time. I don't watch that much TV any more either. I usually record a show or watch it later on the computer. The two main shows I keep up with are Bones and NCIS. Good luck with the book and happy writing on the upcoming deadlines.

Kate Carlisle said...

Good morning to you, too, Vicki! Thanks for coming by. The Cozy Chicks are making me feel so welcome, I love it!

Isn't it interesting how many of us don't watch regular TV much anymore? The world is changing, and the advertising industry is probably scrambling to find ways to keep up. I, for one, and glad that they find ways to monetize our shows so that we don't have to pay for them!

Deb Baker said...

That's my cat Lightening on the cover! DVR changed my life, although Mondays I'm perched in front of the TV for House, 24, and Castle (love that man).

Kate Carlisle said...

Dave, Thank you so much for the quote! Well said, Carolyn Hart! It's true in my case, at least. One of the things I love best about cozy mysteries is the guaranteed happy ending. I know I'm going to have an exciting ride and that, in the end, justice will prevail. I love that!

Sheila Connolly said...

I love Castle (and Lee Lofland's snarky remarks the day after on what parts they got wrong), and Brenda on The Closer is a great complex character. I also watch House to see how the writers try to make a rather nasty character appealing.

I have to admit that no matter what deadlines I may be facing, my brain just shuts down each day after a certain point, so like you, I need something that doesn't overtax whatever faculties I have left. And no, I couldn't watch at my computer--I spend enough time daily with my butt in that chair!

Can't wait to get my hands on the new book!

Kate Carlisle said...

Mason, Thank you! I love the cover, too. I bow before the cover artist! Book reviewer Lesa Holstine says that Penguin has some of the best cover artists around, and I agree! (Lesa's review of If Books Could Kill) Last week, I got a sneak peek at the cover of the next Bibliophile Mystery, due out in November, and it's just as yummy. Its primary color is a very rich gold. The three books look great together!

Kate Carlisle said...

Deb, How fun that Lightening is a cover model! :) Maybe he can become a model/actor, and you can get him a role on Castle so you can meet Nathan Fillion in person. You can be the official cat wrangler!

Kate Carlisle said...

Sheila, It is interesting to watch The Closer and House episodes multiple times, to dig down into the writing. House is not likable in the traditional sense, but I love him! He's fun to watch, and despite his all-around nastiness, he has enough redeeming qualities to keep me from hating him. He's cutting and sarcastic, but his primary goal is to save lives, which makes him admirable. Of course, his reason for wanting to save lives is more about solving the mystery than about altruistic feelings toward mankind.

And Brenda on The Closer is just a kook. "Thank yewwwww."

Dru said...

I don't know how I do it but I reading and TV watching goes hand in hand.

If I'm not reading (well, okay between commercials), I'm watching The Closer, Burn Notice, Leverage, Castle (Have you read the book?),
NCIS, The Good Wife, Criminal Minds, CSI: NY, NCIS: Los Angeles, Cold Case, White Collar.

Do you notice the trend? They are all mysteries where we have to solve the clues, just like in the books that I enjoy so much.

I look forward to reading "If Books Can Kill" and congrats on your release.

Kate Carlisle said...

Dru, I haven't read the Castle book. Is it good? I would think that would be a very fun series to read, as well as to watch.

I'm curious about NCIS: Los Angeles. Is that the one with Chris O'Donnell? It looks good, but I haven't caught it yet. Do you like it?

Heather Webber said...

Thanks for being here, Kate. I really enjoyed Homicide in Hardcover and can see why it made the NYT list.

I used to be a HUGE TV watcher but not so much these days. Busy, busy! I don't watch many dramas but will tune in to Glee and my fave reality shows--Amazing Race and American Idol (somehow I get sucked in every year) and I love the house shows on HGTV...

Kate Carlisle said...

Heather, Thank you! I'm flattered that you enjoyed Homicide in Hardcover! I wish you the best with Truly, Madly, too. Fabulous title, and the cover art is just as adorable!

Ooooh, yes. The house shows on HGTV are wonderful. They can't make them fast enough for me. I especially love House Hunters International because it gets me dreaming about travel.

Anna Sugden said...

Hi Kate! Hi Cozies! Swinging over from the Romance Bandits to see what our fab Kate is up to.

For those of you who haven't yet tried her books - they are awesome! (In my humble unbiased opinion *g*)

My problem is like yours, Kate, in that I need something to watch where I can just chill out. But, I also have the problem of being in the UK, so a lot of the shows aren't on here. That's where iTunes comes in handy! I download them to my iPod. I'm a fan of The Closer, Saving Grace and Castle. Also loved The Beast - so sad there won't be any more.

My other love, as Kate knows, is hockey. That's when the DVR comes in handy as the NJ games are shown over here, but in real time - so they start at midnight or later! The benefit of the DVR is I can delete the losses and pretend they weren't on LOL.

Jen Lyon said...

Kate, I'm so excited about IF BOOKS COULD KILL! I'm getting my copy this weekend!

I think I'm the only person int eh known universe who does not have a DVR so I miss out on a lot of TV shows. I really must get a DVR.

Kate Carlisle said...

Miss Anna!!! Thanks for popping over. You know I always love to see your face!

Do any of the UK TV stations have streaming video online, or is that just an American thing?

Kate Carlisle said...

Jen, no, no! You don't need a DVR. Just click on the links in this blog post, and you'll be able to watch the shows on your computer. It's AMAZING!

Dru said...

Kate, the Castle book is enjoyable, a little different from the TV show.

Chris O'Donnell is on NCIS: Los Angeles and I like the show.

Shel said...

I haven't watched a lot of TV in years. We cut the cable a couple of years ago. We recently got DirecTV; but I find my schedule isn't conducive to prime time TV watching, so I Hulu most things. Actually, there's only two programs I'm really interested in, and those are Glee and Heroes.
Kate, it's good to see you here, and by some strange coincidence, I just started "If Books Could Kill" last night. I can already see I'm going to enjoy it as much or more than I did "Homicide in Hardcover". Congrats on a job well done, and already I can't wait for the next book in the series.

Anna Sugden said...

There are streaming channels, Kate, and what are called iplayers, where you can download programmes for free for a limited period of time.

Unfortunately, for the hockey coverage and other US programmes, you can't get the streaming as it's restricted to the US :(

Oh forgot to say - I'm so excited The Food Network has started airing over here - I love food programmes like Iron Chef *g*.

signlady217 said...

Here's my list for dramas: Castle CSI, CSI:New York, CSI:Miami, Lie to Me, The Forgotten, NCIS, NCIS:Los Angeles, Lost, 24, Criminal Minds, Human Target, The Mentalist, Bones, Ghost Whisperer, Medium, Numbers. Anything that's on at the same time, I just catch online later. I also like Eastwick, Smallville, Extreme Makeover:Home Edition, and the Inspector Lewis series.

I've always been a sucker for a good cop show, and these are some of the best out there right now, IMO. I must add that I always have a book right next to the couch, as I usually read during the commercials!

Looking forward to your books (they were already on my TBR list). Keep up the good work!

Maureen Child said...

Great post, Kate! And I had no idea the whole de-follicking process could be so painful!

I love love love Supernatural...

Anna Campbell said...

Hiya Kate! Hiya Cozy Chicks! Kate, what a great post. You know you're my model when it comes to living la vida loca, gorgeous! I still remember that party with the Aga Khan when he named one of his racehorses after you! And then it won the Derby and he gave you the cup! Oh, what larks!

Laughed at your TV watching habits. I'm a bit the same except that I'm doing it courtesy of my local version of Net flicks. You know, DVDs turn up in the postbox and you can watch ALL the eps in a series without ads and without cliffhangers driving you crazy (at least until the currently available eps run out). I've become stuck on a number of US shows that I wouldn't have dreamed of watching on TV. Bones (oh, David!), Mad Men (although it's kinda grim!), Criminal Minds (love Mandy P - never thought I'd go for a man named Mandy, makes me feel like Barry Manilow!), Burn Notice (love that man!). Was stuck on House but got sick of him being such a b*stard all the time.

Congratulations on IF BOOKS COULD KILL! Seriously, Aga Khan or not, you're a star, kiddo!

Kate Carlisle said...

Dru, thanks for the recommendation. I like Chris O'Donnell, so I'll give NCIS: LA a try.

Shel, How fun! Thanks for picking up If Books Could Kill. I'm thrilled that you're enjoying it!!

Kate Carlisle said...

Anna, Sorry you can't get most US programs, but I'm equally sorry we can't get British programs over here, except a few on BBC America. And, of course, through Netflix. How fun that you're getting the Food Network now. That channel always makes me hungry! I do love watching other people cook, though.

signlady, We really do have a lot of good cop shows on the air right now, don't we? Some of the writing is fantastic. I love when these shows put a twist on a current event. The Law & Order writers are masters at that, and it really keeps the shows relevant.

Anna Campbell said...

Kate, we actually DO get most US programs but by the time news has filtered through to me that something is going to be interesting, it's over. And I'm a bit obsessional about watching something from the beginning. Love the whole TV show on DVD thing!

Kate Carlisle said...

Maureen, Our compulsion to remove hair from where it naturally grows will go down in history as societal masochism.

Oooooh, Supernatural! Spooky!

Kate Carlisle said...

Anna, LOL!!! My biography will be titled "The Aga and I." (Actually, I'd probably buy that book!)

Mad Men is grim, but in a very sophisticated way. When I think of "atmosphere," that's one of the first shows that comes to mind. It's an interesting counterpoint to the shows that were popular during the time period in which Mad Men is set. Certainly shows the underside of a time that looks all glossy and fun, based on the shows of the time. Try watching an episode of Mad Men after watching a few episodes of The Dick Van Dyke Show. I know which world I'd rather live in - even if it is black and white!

jbstanley said...

Hands down, my favorite is House. I hate it when the season ends. We DVR everything and watch it later sans commercials.

Congrats on your new release! Love the cover!

Kate Carlisle said...

jbstanley, Thanks for the compliments on my cover! I love it, too. It's so exciting when you get the first look at the new cover. So far, I've had all good experiences. Knock on wood.

Beth said...

Hi Kate and Cozies!!

Kate, congrats on your new release. I can not wait to read If Books Could Kill *g*

And I adore TV. Like you, though, I've had to cut back on my TV viewing time. Now I try to watch shows while I'm on the treadmill. I'm all caught up with the first season of Chuck and have the second season in my Netflix queue. Other shows in my queue are Glee, Criminal Minds, Psyche, Leverage, White Collar and Burn Notice.

Looks as if I'm going to be spending quite a bit of time sweating on that treadmill ;-)

Maggie Sefton said...

Hi, Kate. Glad you could fill in for me. As for the TV, oh yeah. I have to tape my faves or I'd miss them when I'm out or travelling. Convenience is the name of the name, girl. And I'm about to download an app so I can catch some stuff on my smart phone.

Kate Carlisle said...

Beth, That's a great way to get in shape! I've often thought that I should get a treadmill that powers the TV so that if I slow down, the pictures dims.

Maggie, Thank you for allowing me to guest blog here today! I've had such a great time! This has been a really fun discussion.

There's an app for THAT?! How fun!

Lover of Books said...

Kate, great post! I've been eyeing those books but money is a wee bit tight. Well that is what happens when you have an almost 4 month old baby.

As for TV, our vcr died and now we have a dvr. I love House, NCIS, Bones, Extreme Makeover:Home Edition, Holmes on Homes (can't wait till my mom goes to Canada!!), Diners Drive-in's and Dives, and when it's around Dancing with the Stars and So You Think You Can Dance.

Lover of Books said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Diane P said...

Glad to see that Bones was added to a few lists. I DVR that show also so I can watch it at a different time than Grey's.
No one mentioned "Modern Family" but maybe because it isn't a mystery? It is a hoot.
Hulu is a great to get caught up on shows. Our cable co. had a dispute with ABC so it was the only way I could watch any of the ABC shows.
Love Castle by the way-definitely on my DVR list.

Kate Carlisle said...

Loverofbooks, May I call you Lover? ;)

Lover, Life does change when a baby enters it! I would imagine streaming TV is good for those late-night feedings. You know why I think Dancing with the Stars is so fun to watch? Because we suddenly see those celebrities as regular people. We're used to seeing them in the role in which they excel, but when you ask them to learn a new skill, they're just as likely to fumble as we are.

Kate Carlisle said...

Diane, I have seen a few episodes of Modern Family, and you're right. It is a hoot! I love how the young, hot Colombian wife truly loves her husband, so they're turning that stereotype on its head. And her son is my favorite character, that wise old man trapped in a ten-year-old's body.

Nancy said...

Kate, I don't watch as much TV as I used to. I love(!) Castle. It's a great show, and I can't believe we missed it last night. I also like White Collar, Burn Notice, and Smallville.

I got your book today, the last copy in the store, and can't wait to read it.

Tawny said...

Oooooh, I adore Castle. Its the only thing I actually commit time to watching :-)

Kate Carlisle said...

Nancy, Wow! Love hearing that your store sold out of If Books Could Kill. Thanks for letting me know! I hope you love it!

Tawny, Nathan Fillion is worth a commitment.

Kate Carlisle said...

Thank you, Cozy Chicks, for hosting me today! I had such a great time! And I came away with several recommendations for TV shows I haven't seen yet. :) Thank you again for being such gracious hosts.

Vickie said...

I haven't watched a lot of video streaming but I LOVE mu DVR!! It is the best invention.

Lover of Books said...

Hey Kate,
Opps my first name is Krista.I forgot to put that in there.

Yes dancing with the stars is fun to watch. I cannot wait for the new season!!

Krista (feeling a little bashful)

Anonymous said...

What a pleasant surprise to see you on Cozy Chicks today. I just ordered your new book last night. I can"t wait for it to come in and read it.
My favorite tv shows are House, The Closer, Law and Order and oh how I miss Monk.
Annette

Kate Carlisle said...

Vickie, I share your love of the DVR!

Krista, LOL!!

Annette, What a nice post! I hope you love If Books Could Kill!

Sarah MacCallum said...

That's why I love Tivo - I record everything I like to watch and don't have to worry about when it's actually on. And Castle and Psych are two of my favorites!

Sarah

Sherri said...

Hi Kate! I love "24"-I am addicted! I watch it on TV and if I miss it I watch it on hulu.com. I didn't watch it until Season 3 but then I went back and watched all the Seasons. I used to watch the CSI shows but they got to predictable for me.