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Liebster Award

liebster-blog-award

A few weeks ago I was nominated for the Liebster Award by the very talented and lovely jac forsyth, the author and blogger of the site Crone. This sweetheart fairly recently popped up on my blog and started gifting me with all sorts of marvelous and insightful comments. She has all sorts of fun short stories and poems on her site, so please go and give it a look!

The Liebster Award is, more or less, allowing you folks out there to learn a bit more about me and, more importantly, find new blogs.

The Rules:
1. Share 11 facts about yourself.
2. Answer 11 questions from the blogger who nominated you.
3. Nominate up to 11 bloggers and write 11 questions for them to answer.

The Facts:
1. I have a huge sweet tooth! Chocolate is one of my greatest weaknesses.

2. My other weakness is animals, particularly puppies (and, no, I don’t care how old a dog is — it will always be a puppy). I’m hoping one day I’ll be able to write full-time and, when I do, I’ll foster/adopt as many dogs as I can care for!

3. Gaming is important to me as well. The stories, art, music, characters, and the social aspect and community of gaming are all huge inspirations to me.

4. My day job is a tax collector. Sounds fun, doesn’t it? Fortunately, I have an awesome work environment and amazing coworkers in my office!

5. My Hogwarts house is Gryffindor, while my Ilvermorny house is Thunderbird.

6. I’m a bit of a hydrophobic. I hate swimming, and I refuse to go underwater. As far as I remember, there’s no real rhyme or reason for this phobia.

7. As a kid, my greatest ambition in life was to be Batman, part of the X-Men, or a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle. I’d like to think that those role models are the reason why I cannot stand any sort of prejudice or bigotry and am gifted with an open mind.

8. While I did very well in school, I was never a fan of the classroom setting. I prefer to learn hands-on and work rather than sit at a desk and take notes.

9. I love music of almost any kind (I’m not too partial to rap), and I almost always have something playing in the background when I’m working. At the moment, it’s usually video game soundtracks or instrumental artists like Lindsey Stirling and Taylor Davis.

10. I’m pretty proficient with computers and software, as well as being able to code a bit in HTML and Java. I find most electronics and programs fascinating!

11. I’m the middle of three sisters in my family. Rachel is my younger sister, while our eldest sister is Lisa. Thanks to Lisa, Rachel and I just became aunts to our first nephew this year!

My Answers:
1. Why did you decide to start blogging?
Oh, dear Lord… Technically, I think I started my blog way back in 2012, but it wasn’t something I took seriously. This year I truly started buckling down, trying to build up my blog mostly to reach out and keep in touch with fellow writers and gamers. It also helps my own writing to be talking about it to the world!

2. If you were an evil villain trying to take over the world, how would you do it?
Patiently. Although having minions and using force may be fun, I’d be more inclined to take a manipulative route. Plant seeds of doubt within allies’ minds, watch them turn on each other, usurp the power for myself, that sort of thing.

3. Which quote would you have tattooed up your arm?
“Far over the Misty Mountain cold…” A simple tribute to the Lord of the Rings and Hobbit franchises with a line of lyrics from their songs. This particular one is from Misty Mountains and it just evokes a sense of fantasy and adventure to me. Other quotes I was thinking of were either from Disney or the Legend of Zelda games.

4. What book, poem or piece of artwork are you currently working on?
Well, there are several on the back-burner at the moment. I suppose I’ll say the tentatively titled “Glory,” my planned novel for next month’s NaNoWriMo. It’s going to be a fantasy-ish adventure novel with a cast of characters exploring the lands around them. Dragons will most likely be involved.

5. Blue pill or Red pill?
Red pill all the way. The truth may be ugly, but it’s better than a beautiful lie.

6. How do you deal with self doubt?
Fake it ’til you make it. I’m a fairly self-assured individual, mostly because I try not to care about what others think of me, but if I’m struggling with self-doubt when it comes to writing or one of my other projects, I try to push through it or even take a small break.

7. What one piece of advice would you give to new bloggers?
Make your blog something you’re passionate about and let that passion roll off the page to touch your readers. If you’re having fun doing it, not only will it be contagious to your readers, it’ll never seem like a chore.

8. If you could go back in time, which period of history would you choose?
Can I go ahead in time? I’d love to see the technological advances of future! If not, then perhaps the time of the Renaissance period. The art movement alone would be amazing!

9. Which book or film do you wish you’d thought of writing first?
Uh, Harry Potter? The Lord of the Rings? The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern? Anything really that evokes a sense of magic. I also wish I could have been part of the superhero movement, such as the X-Men or Batman comic books. Those kinds of writings, about justice and overcoming intolerance, are fantastic to me.

10. What is your zombie apocalypse strategy?
Similar to my “take over the world” strategy, patience would be key. Stay low, go fast, keep quiet, hit the zombies hard enough to one-shot ’em. I’d probably try to make my way toward a mountainous region, somewhere that had a small neighborhood or not too many people/zombies around, and attempt to live off the land there.

11. Which character from any novel, poem or piece of artwork that you have produced, would you most like to meet?
Alexander Baker, also known as Tech. A character from my superhero series, he’s an adorable, geeky genius, the type of guy who has an unending passion for his projects, but can definitely be a bit flighty with other things. Nevertheless, if you needed someone to talk to or a date to a wedding or something, he’d be there in a heartbeat.

My Questions:
1. If your blog was categorized as a book genre, what genre would it be?

2. Congratulations, you just adopted a mythical creature as a pet! What kind of creature is it?

3. What is your ideal weather like on a writing and/or reading day?

4. What’s your element (fire, water, light, earth, etc.)?

5. Who is your favorite original character? Or, if you’re not that kind of writer/blogger, who is your favorite fictional character?

6. Virtual Reality gaming systems are on the market now. What fictional world (book, film, video game, etc.) would like you to visit if you could through a VR system?

7. QUICK — what song are you listening to right now?

8. What is the last movie that you have watched that you would recommend to your best friend?

9. If writing wasn’t an option for you, what would you be doing instead?

10. Would you rather be a wizard in a humans’ world or a human in a wizards’ world?

11. Which is easiest to write: the beginning, the middle, or the end?

Now, here are the 11 blogs I nominate for the Liebster Award. You guys are under no obligation to do this if it’s not your thing, but know that more of the world deserves to know about you!

1. Rachel Poli
2. The Huffman Post
3. Hencheman-4-Hire
4. Nintendobound
5. I Read Encyclopedias for Fun
6. An Adventure in NaNoWriMo
7. Richard’s Blog
8. Inklings
9. A-Scribe to Describe
10. My Little Book Blog
11. Tiffany Crystal

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Posted by on October 17, 2016 in Home

 

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The Unique Blogger Award

Over at his blog, Richard was kind enough to nominate me for the Unique Blogger Award a couple of weeks back. Thanks very much, Richard! It was sweet of you to nominate me for such an award!

Without further ado…

The Rules:
1. Thank the blogger who nominated you and include a link to their blog.
2. Answer their 3 questions.
3. Include one meme and one quote you really like.
4. Nominate 8-13 bloggers to receive this award.
5. Ask your nominees 3 UNIQUE questions.
6. Add a link to the awards creator: Tara at Flower in Rainy Day.

The Questions:
1. If you could direct a film adaptation of any book, which would it be?

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern. I would dearly love to see this adapted into a film, with the best special effects team there is!

2. Where in the world would you most like to visit that you haven’t been to yet?

Considering how much of a Lord of the Rings fan I am, I’m thinking New Zealand. I haven’t traveled very far at all in my life, and the chance at seeing the gorgeous land where the movies were filmed sounds amazing.

3. Is there a particular animal you would like to see in the wild?

I would love to observe the majesty of a wolf pack or a herd of wild horses loping through their territory.

The Meme:

(I don’t really have a favorite meme? I’m going to cheat and skip this section… Sorry!)

The Quote:

“It’s a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no knowing where you might be swept off to.” – Bilbo Baggins in The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien

The Nominees:
(Obviously you guys are under no obligation to do this if it’s not your thing, but know that I love you all!)

1. Rachel Poli
2. Mr. Panda
3. Herminia Chow
4. Skye Hegyes
5. Jac Forsyth
6. Combustible Reviews
7. Miketendo64
8. Nthato Morakabi

My Questions:
1. How well equipped — both physically and mentally — are you to survive in the world of the last book you read?
2. If you were in an RPG-style game, what character class would you be?
3. If your favorite fictional character or world were a genre of music, what genre would they be?

 
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Posted by on September 26, 2016 in Home

 

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Blog Appreciation Post

Hello everyone! Today I thought I would dedicate my blog post to some of the other blogs I read on this wonderful corner of the Internet. While I’ve given a shout out to Rachel, Skye, and Herminia a few times before, I thought I would put a few other blogs in the spotlight. I randomly picked out just a measly few of the many blogs that I follow, and I’ll probably do another post like this down the road at some point. Enjoy!

The Writer’s Corner

A blog created by A.J. Palm, The Writer’s Corner boasts posts about writing, literature, and journalism. She posts every Sunday and Wednesday, and has plenty to find if you’re interesting in writing and reading.

Henchman-4-Hire

Penned by Mr. Sean Ian Mills, Henchman-4-Hire is a wonderful blog dedicated to all things geeky, such as superhero comics and video games. If you’re part nerd, go and check out Henchman-4-Hire!

Book in the Bag

Book in the Bag is a blog run by a team of nine reviewers. They dedicate their time to reading and reviewing as many books as they can, and they also take recommendations. If you’re looking for a new book or two, try scrolling through their posts for some suggestions.

I Read Encyclopedias for Fun

Jay Dee Archer is the author of this particular blog. Not only does he explore writing and reviewing, he also enjoys sharing his random store of knowledge regarding science and history and his photography.

Double Jump

Double Jump is a brand new blog centered around video games and is run by Rachel and myself! (Yes, this is a bit of shameless self-advertising.) Rachel and I have a plethora of ideas for this blog, including reviews, debates, top lists, and more. We’ll be doing joint posts on Wednesdays while she posts on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and I’ll post on Mondays and Fridays. Today, for instance, I have posted a book review for “Ready Player One,” a novel set in the future that revolves around a contest for the control of a coveted virtual reality. Go check it out if you’re interested!

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What are some of your favorite blogs on WordPress?

 
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Posted by on February 8, 2016 in Home

 

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Time to Write

Rachel: “Why the hell am I putting myself through all of this?!”

Rachel and I were having a discussion about why writers write after she finished revising the latest draft of one of her novels. Honestly, unless we’re Stephen King or J.K. Rowling, we’re not making much writing, especially when we just start out. Rachel and I both have day jobs we love and enjoy, and we make decent money. So, why write?

Rachel has completed at least three or four novels, as well as a children’s picture book or two. None of them are published (yet!), but she has submitted and queried a few of her finished works. Her latest novel that she has finished revising is in its fifth draft (hence the quote at the top of this post). After finishing that up, she had sent me a, “Tag, you’re it!” text message to let me know that it’s my turn to critique and edit. I’m very proud of her tenacity regarding her writing, even if we do have “What are we doing?!” moments.

As for me, I have quite a few strong beginnings of novels in the works, some a couple of years old. My problem is ending the things. It’s difficult finding the time, the creativity, the whatever-other-excuse I can find. Within these past couple of days, I’ve been reading Chicken Soup for the Soul: Inspiration for Writers. It’s a brilliant read so far; I recommend it to anyone and everyone who enjoys reading and writing! Rachel and I found it among the writing books in Barnes and Noble during our last visit, and I’m in the middle of the chapter about finding time to write.

Reading some of these stories about people resolving to stop procrastinating and write even when they just have 20 minutes to spare was fantastic. Why can’t I do that? Even if it’s just a bit before going to work, to sleep, waiting for the kids to come home… I already bring a little notebook and a pen with me everywhere, and I can definitely write more during my lunch breaks at work.

It may not be New Year’s, but I can certainly make this as a resolution, right?

Happy blogging, everyone!

 
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Posted by on May 31, 2013 in Home

 

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Scribble: Crown 2

A continuation of “Crown.” Hope you like it!

Rosalie smiled to the little freshman whom had asked for directions. “Of course I can help,” she said, placing an arm around the girl’s shoulders and steering her toward the northern stairwell. “The art department is right down these stairs, all the way to the ground floor, and to the left. You can’t miss it.”

The girl thanked Rosalie and followed her instructions. Rosalie’s smile dissipated into a smirk as the girl disappeared down the stairwell. The girl’s skirt was frayed on the side. Not too noticeable, of course. In fact, the boys of Rothwright would be more interested in its length – or lack of it – than the state of the material.

“That’s not the way to the art department.”

“Of course not, Noelle,” Rosalie said. “Anyone who thinks she can pull off an outfit like that deserves to get lost.”

“You’re just jealous of how great her ass looks in that skirt,” Noelle said. Rosalie huffed and returned to her locker. She primmed in front of the mirror hanging on the inside of the door, checking to be sure her red hair was straight, her teeth were free of lipstick or lunch, her mascara perfect.

“My ass is going to be the only one that Flint is checking out this year,” Rosalie said, her eyes glancing at Noelle behind her.

Although Noelle’s gaze was focused on her cellphone, she scoffed. “Please, that hottie can have any girl – and probably any guy, for that matter – in this school with just a wink of those gorgeous blue eyes. The worst part is that he knows it.”

“Which is why I’m going to stand out,” Rosalie said, slamming her locker shut, the clang drowning out the school’s bell. “I’m going to stand out and make him work for my attention.”

Noelle walked beside Rosalie to their class, brushing past other students with her elbows as she returned a text message. “Come again?”

“That’s my plan.” Rosalie beamed to a few young men that she had the pleasure of knowing. She giggled at one’s smirk, but she returned to a more serious air as soon as the boys were out of earshot. “I’m going to become so irresistible that he will become the chaser rather than the chased.”

“Good luck with that,” Noelle said.

“You don’t think I’m good enough–”

“Guess what my gossip ring has just informed me?” Noelle showed Rosalie the series of text messages she had been absorbed with throughout the morning. “New student this year. A sophomore, like us, a somewhat pretty thing with dark hair, eyes, and last season’s fashion trends.”

“Are you taking bets on how long she’ll last?” Rosalie asked, chuckling to herself as she read the texts’ description of the new girl. Apparently, she seemed shy and polite. When she had bumped into one of Noelle’s more reliable ring members, the new girl had ducked her head down and apologized. “With how demure she sounds, I wonder if she’ll stick around even for the semester.”

“It depends, I suppose,” Noelle said. The pair slowed down at the end of the corridor. “Who knows if someone will guide her through Rothwright or if she’ll be left floundering all on her own. Ciao for now, Rose. I can’t keep Mr. Hunks waiting too long.”

“I’m sure Mr. Hanks,” Rosalie said, enunciating the teacher’s proper name with a smirk, “is missing you terribly right now.”

Noelle laughed and strode down the left hallway while Rosalie went to the right. She strutted into her English literature classroom, nodding to the teacher while taking her seat. Miss Lason looked exasperated, as expected, at Rosalie’s slight tardiness, but apparently did not feel the need to scold Rosalie. It would not have done any good, of course; Rosalie was never bothered by being a few minutes late to class.

“Welcome back to Rothwright, students,” the teacher said, gaining most of the students’ attentions. “If you would, please be kind enough to welcome a new student in the area.” Miss Lason beckoned to a young woman in the front row.

Rosalie quirked an eyebrow as she watched the other woman stand up beside Miss Lason, and found it a touch amusing that the new girl would be in her first period class. Sizing the new girl up, Rosalie scrutinized the simple pairing of a black sweater with snow leopard print skirt that reached her knees. White pumps completed the ensemble, and Rosalie wondered if they were to help compensate the girl’s lack of height. Even with the heels, the girl barely reached Miss Lason’s shoulders.

“This is Crystal Bowen,” Miss Lason said. “She’s from Boston, isn’t that right?”

“That was my last city, yes,” Crystal said, her accent light with a hint of a southern ring to it. “I was born in North Carolina. It’s exciting to be in in New York City.”

“We hope you enjoy living here,” Miss Lason said, directing Crystal back to her seat. “Now, class, we’re going to start the year off with To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee.

Rosalie didn’t spare the teacher passing out copies of the novel a glance. Her eyes were focused on this Crystal and the appreciative looks that a few of the boys were granting her. Not that the new girl noticed as much. Perhaps Rosalie will take Noelle’s words into consideration and teach Crystal about what goes on in Rothwright outside of the classrooms…

 
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Posted by on May 30, 2013 in Scribbles

 

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Scribble: Metamorphosis 2

A companion to this post (from a year ago!), these are more 100-word drabbles about “Downfall” sharing the metamorphosis theme. Hope you enjoy them!

Mutation

He believed that the Magics of the world were pretty much done going through revamps. Why try to improve something that already worked well? There were few mutations having to do with the Magics in this day and age, and he was fine with that. He was content with being an Air Mage; he didn’t need to try to figure out how to work the others as well. When he had just started at the School, a classmate had died trying to harness the power of all three Magics. He saw no reason to try to repeat the failed experiment.

Adaptation

“A Mage must always adapt to his or her surroundings,” was one of the first lessons he had learned while at the School. Being an Air Mage, he had reign of the most flexible form of Magic, and he was forever thankful for its ability to help him adapt to any landscape. It mattered not where the class practiced, for the winds were always present and willing to help him try to defeat his classmates in friendly sparring bouts. He did have difficulty adapting to teamwork situations, however; perhaps that was one reason why she and he were always clashing.

Revision

Revision was definitely needed. Biting the guy had only succeeding in giving her a lousy taste in her mouth when her fangs had ripped through flesh. Not only that, the bite hadn’t affected the enemy as much as she had wanted it to. Instead, he just threw some Fire Magic in her direction, and he narrowly missed her. She had rolled away from the man, snarling and growling while she mentally tried to revise her original plan. Wolves were creatures of Fire as well, so the Magic wouldn’t affect her too much, but she would rather not have singed fur.

Variation

Air Magic had the most variation among the Magics of the world. After all, Air could be a breeze to cool down the hottest day or a fierce twister ripping up everything in its path. True, it could not alter the ground like those who practiced Earth Magic nor could it destroy like a Fire Mage, but Air could certainly be inventive enough to survive in the Magic world. He was curious if the Spiriters’ connections with the Elements were similar. His companion’s Spirit partner was of Fire, but she wasn’t as stubborn as some of his Fire Mage classmates.

Shift

He had once asked her if it hurt at all to shift. Honestly, she had to pause to think of a response. She had been shifting all her life. Her older sister had liked to joke that she had been born in her wolf form; she was so used to transforming. Physically, shifting had never hurt. Mentally, however, was a different story. It hurt to lose the extra power that her wolf form granted her, but she knew it would hurt even more if she stayed so long as a wolf that she forgot how to transform back into herself.

 
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Posted by on May 30, 2013 in Scribbles

 

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(Non)Existant Social Life

Cormack: “How desperate are you for gold that you would take a prince hostage?”

Rachel and I went to our local Barnes and Noble again to write today. With Rachel’s school semester being over, it’s easier for us to go there usually about once a week. We make a pit stop at Dunkin’ Donuts for a breakfast of bagels and English muffin sandwiches, then get frappuccinos and smoothies at the Starbucks in Barnes and Noble. We go so often, a few of the baristas know Rachel (who usually gets the drinks while I guard our table and laptops) by name.

I was all set to be productive today. I had my flash drive and laptop plugged in and ready to go, I had my packet of prompts and names, even notebooks and pens in case I felt the need to write long-hand or just scribble story notes. However, a friend Rachel and I hadn’t seen in a year or two saw Rachel’s Facebook status about our “writing date,” and he showed up to see us. Don’t get me wrong, it was great seeing him again, and us three had fun conversing and catching up with each others lives. Yet, Rachel only got perhaps 400 words written (when she can usually pull off a couple of thousand, at least) and I typed out only a sentence or two (one of which is the quote at the top of this post).

Our friend was not bothering us, far from it. It was a little awkward attempting to write, though, while also talking to him. We didn’t want to ignore him while typing, and we weren’t too keen on the idea of him trying to peek over our shoulders at what we were writing. In the middle of the conversation, Rachel and I just quietly shut down our laptops in order to continue being social.

I wonder how other writers feel about these types of situations. Is it annoying when friends show up and interrupt your writing time? Or does it signify that maybe you should have more of a social life? What about when others ask about what you’re writing when you’re trying to type away? Is it bothersome when someone attempts to read along as you write?

As a writer, I will work around, over, and underneath these types of obstacles, despite how awkward those situations can be, and I hope everyone else can do the same.

Happy blogging, everyone!

 
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Posted by on May 29, 2013 in Home

 

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