Tuesday, May 31, 2016

All Around the Circuit World 3 // Music Monday

And we're back with a third round of blogging exploration. Hang on to your hats, nab some soda, and buckle up!

Cait @ Paper Fury wrote this awesome post that I think all you writers will appreciate. How to Write the Perfect Bestselling Novel of Ever. Obviously, this is your one ticket to success, all wrapped in one post. How easy does it get?!

Erin @ Designer Blogs Studios shares How to Backup a Blogger Blog. Very good information to know.

Oh, everyone. EVERYONE! Emily @ Ink, Inc. wrote a post, God and Magic. You should read it. Read it now! And she added some beautiful photos to go with.

Also, Jenny @ The Penslayer wrote this fantastic post on the same topic, The Truth About Magic in Your Fiction. Um, yes?! Go read it.

By the way, Jenny's post was inspired by Miriam's post @ wishful thinking. She has some very important and interesting points also.

Yes, I'm very helpful in all posts on magic today.

You're welcome.

I'm also linking up with Lauren @ Always me for Music Monday. It gives me a chance to shriek because  Switchfoot, my favoritest band that I never ever always mention, is coming out with their TENTH album this summer! And I'm ecstatic beyond ecstatic. So here's a release of the music video Float. Seriously loving the bass.




Here's this post by Nellie and Co, wherein we get some pros and cons of marathoning book series. I've never actually marathoned a book series before. But I've been considering rereading a favorite series, so maybe? Have you ever marathoned before?

I'm really loving all of Adelaide's posts and photos @ down by the willows. My recent favorite is probably this one. But then. . . well, they're all my favorites! Like from your millie. Ah, yes!

Sunny @ A Splash of Ink gives us some tips on selling used books. I know, I know. Some people are a little attached to their books. But you know those books you didn't enjoy might be enjoyed by someone else?

Tracey @ Adventure Awaits delves into the mildly controversial topic of swearing in books. It's a good, open discussion. Hop on over and see what she has to say!

Tori @ Wanderer's Pen wrote a post about how we can apply the King's Quest video game concepts to writing. It's all about deep POV! One of my favorite aspects of writing.

Guess what, everyone?! I get to be a part of a review blog train! Isn't that the coolest? I always like collaborating with fellow bloggers to bring awesome posts to you guys. So Brittany @ Space Between the Spines is hosting the 2016 Review Train. Lauren @ Always Me post her review today. But the review train was actually started yesterday with Genni's @ Ready, Set, Read! review of The Unexpected Everything. Go check it out!


If you're only going to read one of these, read CARMEL's What Are Your 'And's? because aldkfa;seofjk! This philosophy, can I call it a philosophy? I shall. This philosophy is something I'm fairly sure I was born with because I have too many 'and's. Writing. Reading. Music. Clogging. Editing. Blogging. JUST READ IT! (I do believe I've said that about nearly all of these posts, but then why else would I be recommending them?)


What are your 'and's? And pray tell, what is your process for writing a bestselling novel? Don't make excuses about how you're not published and who says you'll be bestselling. I SAY, okay? That's who. So humor me and I'll humor you. What's your "magic" novel formula?

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Starting Sparks: Traitor in the Ranks





 I feel like it needs more editing, but there's not time. So apologies if it feels too choppy. It is supposed to have a mildly choppy feel for experimental reasons/ if you really want to know ask me in the comments. I tried not to over do it.


 


I strained my eyes to determine silhouette from shadow. Behind me, came the men's shouts about extinguishing the fire from gunpowder explosion. The dark woods muffled the chaos of the camp. Here it was deceptively calm. Captain Rillis was to my right somewhere in the underbrush, and solider Teny on his right.

I walked as soft as the forest dwellers on the leaf litter. Rillis had often commented on how uncanny it was. I once feared he may suspect. It used to keep me up at night, you know. If I was found out, I'd be dead. Unless I escaped, in which case Chief Moss would reject me for exposing myself.

A shadow slipped slow and silent to a tree. My gun was up, but I did not follow the shadow. I kept my direction. The shadow flitted again, in and out of trees. I prayed that no one would see it.

"There!" Rillis shouted. "Stop, Wildman!"

Rillis and Teny closed in and I pretended not to fall behind. When I emerged into the clearing, they had already trained their guns on-- I kept my face as natural as possible.

No. Not you. Anyone but you. I should've gotten there first. I could've let you go. Let you wound me and pretended you had escaped. But it was you and I had failed.

Why'd you have to set the powder supply blazing? It could've been any of Moss' errand rebels. Any little snot kid's life he'd happily throw away. But he didn't even send someone worth throwing away. He sent you, the fool. I had told you to stay away from him.

You stared at me as Rillis shoved the end of his rifle in your shoulder. You turned and spat at him. You idiot! You'd no idea how much I wished to scream at you. Your defiance only made him shove harder.

"Shall we shoot him here?" Teny said.

"Ought we not bring him back to camp?" I said before Rillis could answer. "Perhaps we could get information out of him."

You shot me another glance. You should've made it a glare, you dunce. The wonder and curiosity of your open blue eyes shone through. You never grew up. Off you went to join Moss' cause and you still couldn't hide a thing.

"Excellent thinking, Burns," Rillis said. "Lead the way."

So I led the way back to camp. All that remained of your fire was wet, black ground and rising smoke. I wasn't sure where to go exactly. We had no prisoners. But when I seemed to falter, Rillis said, "We'll take him to the general."

I stepped into General Isen's tent. She looked up from a table. Both her hands propped on it in a downward V as she studied a map of the area.

"General, ma'am." I saluted.

"Lieutenant." She nodded.

"We have found the troublemaker." At least my voice sounded as bored as normal. Inside though, I tell you, my heart had dropped into a pit. When they brought you in, I wanted to shoot everyone of them. I wanted to beg to take your place. I wanted to snatch you away and run for it.

I just wanted it to not be you. Why was it you?

Perhaps you wouldn't believe me. For truth, we did fight often. But brothers fight. It doesn't mean they do not care. Because I care I told you never to go near Moss. He is a heartless chief. He holds no value for your life. He is not worth dying for.

But of course, you didn't listen. You had never listened. Why, why?

General Isen looked you over. I melted into the background. This was bad. So very bad. How could I save you? Could I save you? They would surely find out. Especially if Rillis suspected. He would smoke us both out.

I was already a Lieutenant and gathering important intel for Moss. General Isen had been taking more notice of me recently. She hinted at making me a captain, which would better Moss' cause. But if I was found out, Moss would not take me back. He would throw me out into the cold, leave me for the Arderwains, or kill me himself for jeopardizing such a valuable position to him.

I cared nothing for Moss. I cared nothing for the King of Arderway; he was just as rotten. All of them. The whole world. I would be a traitor to the world if I saved you. There would be no place left but death.

But to be a traitor to blood?

I was kept out of the matter though. The General ordered Rillis and Teny to direct you to a tent to be watched, starved, and questioned. I wanted to see you in the night, but one can never leave the sleeping quarters without notice. All day the next, I had to attend to my men otherwise something would be suspected. Even after, Rillis kept me busy. I did not even eat.

At the end of the day, I determined to inquire of you, as odd as it may seem. Perhaps I could pretend to hate you, all forest dwellers, so as to justify my inquiry. Before I could, General Isen required my presence. I could do nothing but oblige.

She stood in her tent with a little pistol. She held it loosely, aimlessly. But I knew in a snap second she could kill with a purpose.

"Lieutenant Burns," her voice like iron as normal. "I have considered promoting you to captain for sometime. Since the death of Lak, troop 59 has been sorely in want of a captain."

"How ever I can best serve his Majesty." I bowed. It was always such a game. Feign loyalty to Moss when he calls or he'll kill your family. Feign loyalty to his majesty of Arderway in order to feign loyalty to Moss. Feign loyalty to Isen in order to feign loyalty to all.

There was never an honest person who lived to old age.

"I had wanted to do this sooner." Isen fingered the gun. "But you see, someone had, hinted at your loyalties. I've investigated and found the suspicion lacking in real proof."

I bowed again. What was there to say?

"Then you are a captain," Isen straightened. "You begin drilling troop 59 in the morning. But at present," she stepped closer, "as your first act as Captain, it is your privilege to rid the earth of this filth."

Finally I noticed, in the corner, by the entrance, near hidden by the tent flap, you sat tied to a chair. Blood ran down your face. Your clothes were tatters.

She pressed the gun into my hand. "He answered to nothing. The Wildmen never do. He is only stealing oxygen now."

The gun was cold and slick in my hand.  Or perhaps it was my hand?

At first your gaze seemed lazy. A defiant indifference. Was it my imagination, or did you nod? Ever so slightly? You knew my intel was too important to Moss. If you'd had met Moss, you'd not care a twig about his intel.

I thought you'd not understand. Not when I feared that you believed I hated you. I do not hate you. I've never hated you

You almost seemed to forgive me.

I wish I could forgive me.

Dear brother, I am so sorry. I am a traitor. I thought life was empty before, but I did not know emptiness then. I wonder sometimes why, but I know the answer. I was scared. I'm a coward. I thought I had everything to lose when in truth, I had nothing to lose. Nothing but you. And now I've nothing.

_____________________________

So hope you all enjoyed that. . .  Originally, Burns was going to "do the right thing." But then I let myself wonder, what if he didn't? What if he made the wrong choice? I nearly wrote an alternate ending though just because I really, really wanted him to save his brother. D:


Have you done Starting Sparks yet?

Saturday, May 21, 2016

a character named willy-nilly // First Impressions

I can't stand introductions. I can't stand swapping names. It's a strange mixture of awkward and ordinary. It's so commonplace to ask someone their name and tell them your own. Yet it feels so unnatural. 


Lilo and Stitch


Besides, I end up forgetting their name in like seven seconds.

So when I introduce myself to my characters, I try to take a more time with their names.

Well, unless they are an unforeseen side character. Like the guard who gets a few more lines than:

"After them! They're getting away!"

If he starts getting over important, he thinks he deserves his name in the credits.

BUT let's talk about more major characters. Characters we name intentionally. The main character. The main character's bestie. The main characters crush or love/hater. The main character's brother, mother, first dog, and car.


Dory from Disney movie Finding Nemo


Basically, this is a post in which I tell you stories about how I've named some characters and then I really hope you tell me stories about your characters' names, because I'm curious/nosy and I love stories. Obviously. Stories is my game, people.

 Exhibit A

How Oddball got his name

Oddball's name is actually how Oddball came into existence. Nothing monumental. The best way to get a story idea is to do something mundane so your bored brain thinks up something weird for amusement.

I was hanging up clothes when I thought up a kid who lives on the border of Od and Bal and his name is Oddball, because he's a half breed. (Note: I didn't realize the term "half-breed" was derogatory until. . . recently. *hides face* Apparently, I am oblivious to the world. But I still intend to use the term in my book for reasons.)

So yeah. That was the beginning of Oddball. And he thanks me very much for that.*cough*


 greg? // he didn't even know Lestrade's first name...yet he still jumped off the roof to save him, too. I think Sherlock went from being not only great, but good, in that exact moment.- other pinner


Even characters like Shocky, Hawk's Wing, and Ratchet have reasons for their names. Oh, and Esin Trik. Say it like it's one word.

 Then there's Dauntayus. . .

I slapped a name on Dauntayus. All I could think of was the Dauntless (you know, from Divergent). I have no clue why because the Dauntless have nothing to do with this character or the book, or. . . 

Clearly, my mind was wandering and had decided that Dauntless = name. Just tweak it to turn it fantasy. (I haves a weird brain.) And ta-da, Dauntayus! 


Exhibit B

How I swapped characters' names and discombobulated my brain for half a lifetime

Say hi to the weird idea. I wanted the characters in this book series to have different names. Real names, but not normal ones. Does this make sense? For instance, there's a Savannah. I've never met anyone with that name. The MC is Rayne.

Why Rayne?

Because. . .

I like that name. Is that reason enough? Although later there is this concept with water that I added much later. But it's very minimal. Her eyes are liquid gray, like water. That's the lowdown in all it's anticlimactic glory. Rayne is Rayne just because.

There's a Terrence, Mikel, and. . . Kiwi. Kiwi is a name, alright. It's the name of a fruit. *clears throat*

Now, here's the thing. I have these two favorite characters. No, that's a lie. All of them are my favorite (which is completely possible and rational, don't argue, just keep up).

So these two characters obviously need special names. Doesn't everyone give their *favorite* characters the *best* of the names?

My favoritest male character name in the universe is Seth. But I have a Seth in this other, older hopeless failure that will one day be resurrected WIP. I can't have two Seths. THAT WOULD REALLY MESS WITH MY BRAIN. So being a fantasy writer I settled for something that sounds like Seth.

Keth.


XD:


The other name that I picked out is Sid.

So one of the favorites gets named Keth, the other Sid. This is boring Ashley. Why are you putting us through this?

The point is that I gave them the wrong names. Does it matter? Yes. Here's why.

Character A

I want the readers to feel comfortable around Character A. I want them, like Rayne, to trust this guy. I want the readers to be charmed on their first impression. In the beginning, Character A gets named Sid.

Character B

Rayne's first impression of Character B is distrust. She doesn't like this guy, doesn't understand this guy. And he appears very intimidating. I want the readers to have similar first thoughts. In the beginning, Character B is Keth.


 .


It's just a name, Ashley. Why can't you just leave it that way?

Because I really, really want the readers to have a specific impression. And a name is another tool that will help me give that impression.

Sid is a very short name. It has that sharp 's' sound tacked to the sudden heaviness of a 'd'. It's clipped, almost harsh. If you heard someone whisper it in a dark room, it would be enough of a name that you'd be sure you heard something and yet still question if you had. Whispered in the dark, it'd nearly be a hiss.

Keth is short also. But it kind of lingers. It's a name you want to say. It has the soft 'k' twinned with an equally soft 'th'. It's pleasing to say, it's pleasing to hear. It has the essence of a feather; light weight and soft.

For a more straight forward analysis, is Keth an intimidating name? Gosh, no. Why don't I just name Character B Sue?!

So I swapped their names. It was all for the better.

Except in my head, for the longest time, I had two characters named Keth. And who in the world was Sid?


 His expressions are the best


Do you intentionally name your characters to serve your story's purposes? Do you prefer names that are realistic or funny and paradoxical? Do you have any weird stories behind your characters' names?

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

dragon answers // Cruella de Vil and toast

So hi everyone.

I thought I ought to tell you the answers to The Game of Truth and Lies. Originally, I was going to do a video.


 Moriarty.

Let's face it. I got lazy as dragons are apt to do. I feel a thousand year nap coming on. So I might as get this over with before I take a snooze on my TBR, er, treasure hoard.


1. I love the movie 101 Dalmations.

I love everything about this movie. When I was a kid one of my favorite parts was the opening credits (you know, back when the credits rolled before the movie). I loved to watch the spots and dogs run around the screen and my favorite part was the music. I still love the music in that movie. MUSIC! Do you hear me? Go watch it and give it a listen.


Music, people, music


Also, I had aspiration to be a dog. My brother wanted to be Godzilla. I wanted to be a dog. No worries though. I've come to my scaly senses and have accepted dragonhood wholeheartedly.

May I just mention the villain? If there ever was a fiendish human who would've made a good dragon, it was Cruella de Vil! She's got her own theme song. You know a villain has really "made it" when they have their own song.

Plus, her henchmen. Jasper and Horace, bumbling idiots though they be, are classic henchmen material.

The insults. Imbecile. Ninny. Idiot. Also classic.

She drives like a madwoman, people! I must admit I'm rather glad she's not in the skies.


 . . .

And who betrays their friend, by stealing said friend's puppies to make a fur coat?! If that's not wicked than I don't know what is. Who steals their friend's puppy? That's low even for a dragon.

2. I like toast. It's my favorite breakfast.

When I was a young'un who knew nothing, toast indeed was my favorite breakfast. But now, I know more.
 I can't get over the concept of toast. I don't get it.

It's crunchy bread.

. ..


Who wants crunchy bread? When bread is hard and crunchy, we say it's stale. We toss it in the furnace and kill it off. NOBODY WANTS CRUNCHY BREAD.

Why would you purposely. . . Just--  I can't --Crunchy bread?!

I. . . don't like toast. It doesn't make sense.

3. I have never been out of the country. That is, the US.

Once upon a time, I was seventeen (speaking in your human years). I went on a missions trip to Canada. It was a blast! I helped out with VBS and really I can't talk much to adults, or even peers, but I know how to more or less interact with kids. (What can I say? Kids like dragons. They at least believe dragons exist *snorts*) 

But one day, I'd love to fly back to Canada. It's very beautiful and I think a few fellow dragons live there.

4. I've been thinking about changing up the blog.

The lair needs a new look. I'm rather bored with it. It'll still be blue in some shade or other.


 Bored, gif

I had thought about changing the title too. But some people actually seem to like the name. They've made me double think. And now I have to start the whole contemplating process over again.

5. I can't stand The Princess Bride.

This is a lie from the deepest depths of Mordor. I nearly feared to tell it. Although, I do rather think that the lack of dragons is astounding. The Princess Bride could use a dragon or two. It's the perfect book for a dragon and there are a grand total of zero. But that's my onlyest complaint. I love this book to pieces. It's one of my favorites.  I've even written a post on why you ought to read The Princess Bride.

6. When I was a kid, I didn't know The Great Mouse Detective was a Sherlock Holmes retelling.

An unfortunate truth. I was a very unread sooty little reptilian. I didn't even know Sherlock Holmes existed! I'm not sure when I finally obtained this knowledge, but I feel a little cheated.

If I had known, I would've read all the Holmes stories as kid. I would have been a long time, hardcore, seasoned Sherlockian. I would be a Sherlock expert by now. And I could've owed it all to The Great Mouse Detective. 

But instead I'm starting later, which is fine, just not as fantastic. The only upside is that I owe it all to BBC Smaug BBC Sherlock, and my guitar instructor.

7. Gansey is my favorite Raven Boy.

I like Gansey. And I think I will always like him. But he is not my favorite. And I think he will always not be my favorite. 

*collective fandom gasp*


the look of surprise!


I know. Everyone loves Gansey the mostest. But dragons tend to be contrary creatures. So shoot me. 

You don't have the right kind of arrow to do it anyhow. 

My favorite Raven Boy is--

You know, I have half a mind to not tell you. *evil grin* How would that be? 

Okay, I joke. That *might* be as cruel as stealing your puppy. 


dalmations


Surprisingly, my favorite hasn't changed after finishing The Dream Thieves. Adam is my favorite. I know he's really messed up. And he's got a lot of issues. But honestly, they all do. So that's not a logical reason to pick others over him. 

I could go on a paragraph long fangirl/rant right now, but I'll spare you the trouble. Besides I really feel that nap coming on soon. I'll just say that I do fear for him. Adam, that is. For later in the series. He always makes me sad. And he's even more alone now. Not to mention he's very unpredictable. I'm kinda scared to read the rest of the series. I might just go take a thousand year sleep instead. 

*yawns*

Yeah, that's what I'll do. Wake me when season 4 is out.

Might just get a thousand years in.


the fourth season is coming right?

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Beautiful People: Rocky

I'm linking up with Beautiful People hosted by the ever fabulous Cait and Sky. So today we have Rocky.

Say 'hi' Rocky.

Hey, people!

1. How often do they smile? Would they smile at a stranger?

Always. All the time. *grins*

Unless of course they make some nasty comment to Skyler.

Or Oddball.

Or Peril.

Then I feel more like punching them in the face.

But you know, diplomacy and all. Or something Sky said once.

2. What is the cruelest thing they've ever been told? What was their reaction?

It wasn't really something I was told, I guess. More like a look. A treacherous look from. . . okay, yeah. It was told to me.

He used to call me brother. And, yes, that's cruel. It's worse cause he still calls me "brother." That backstabbing, little--

I sliced his face with a piece of glass.

3.  What is the kindest thing they've ever been told? And what was their reaction?

Oh, gosh it. I don't know. It was probably Skyler. She calls me idiot sometimes, you know? 

Skyler: *punches his arm*

Affectionately, of course. *grins*


4. What is a strong memory that has stuck with your character? Why is it so powerful and lasting?

Well, I kinda already talked about one. Sort of. Um, I'm sure there's something else.

There was that time I met Sky. Not sure why I'd remember that.

Skyler: Yeah, that's slipped my mind too.

5. What book (a real actual published book!) do you think that your character would benefit from reading?

Me: *laughs* I don't know. Perhaps a dictionary? 

Skyler: *nods* Yes, please. Get the man a dictionary!

6. Have they ever been seriously injured? How severely? How did they react?

Oh, yeah. Plenty of times. Like there was that one time I fell off a cliff. I wasn't too high up though. Just broke my collar bone. Lots of bruises. And I got poisoned once. In the Labyrinth. I was very unconscious after that. Uh, and then that one time I got shot because, well. . .

Skyler: Because he wouldn't listen to the person aiming a gun at him. 

So maybe that was dumb.

Skyler: Idiot.

7. Do they like and get along with their neighbors?

Uh, I don't really have neighbors. There was once when I did have some and they were all rotten.

8. On a scale of 1 to 10 (1 being easy and 10 being difficult) how easy are they to get along with?

I would say a 1. I don't cause a lot of trouble--

Skyler: Unless someone makes you angry then you're more like an 8.

Oh, an 8? Not a 10?

Skyler: I'm being nice. And if you're injured your absolutely incorrigible. 

Someone get me that dictionary.

9. If they could travel anywhere in the world, where would they go?

Don't really know. I've been to a lot of places. I guess it doesn't matter as long as my friends are with me and we're all safe, and we're on the top of a mountain or rock climbing. You know, some place high. Give me friends and something to climb and I'll be happy.

10. Who is the last person they held hands with? 

Why is this a question? Skyler, duh. 

Me: Eh, yeah. We'll go with that.

 So thanks for stopping by! I hope you enjoyed a Rocky post. Have you done BP?

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Popcorn Reviews: Winter // The Lunar Chronicles


popcorn and cat?


Do you  know how difficult it is to find popcorn gifs on pinterest? This one is hilarious. I mean, it's a cat. What's not funny about felines? I have half a mind to use it all the time.

I gave an official review on Goodreads so here I'll sum up what I think is most important. Oh, and I'll probably throw quotes at you.

Mostly, throw quotes at you.


"You are the capital U of Unhelpful."


Winter, as the final book in the Lunar Chronicles, was a really good way to end the series.  The Lunar Chronicles is a retelling of intertwining fairytales with a sci-fi, dystopian spin. The main story is Cinderella, but it also involves Little Red Riding Hood, Rapunzel, and Snow White. Also, I've always felt some Beauty and the Beast undertones from a certain OTP. *cough* 





Anyhow, Winter is the last book in the series therefore we have THE EPIC BATTLE. Because that's how book series work. That's all I'm going to say about the single book, because if you've not read the rest of the series I don't want to spoil anything.

So, you really ought to read The Lunar Chronicles (*hint* the first book is Cinder). It's fantastic and hilarious! 

 You will now head to library and borrow Cinder.


Anakin and Obi-Wan mocking the battle droids they’ve just killed. RotS deleted scenes.


If, on the other hand, you have read the series but have doubts because this is the last book. I had my doubts too, but have no fear. You will love it.


"I can't believe nothing went wrong."
"I would wait until you're sitting on a throne before making statements like that."


The Lunar Chronicles has so many characters. Meyer juggles various POV characters and yet it's never confusing. What's even better is that they're each complex individuals. They have their own character arcs and personalities. I don't know how she does it. They all are so real.

Can I mention funny? They are hilarious! The sarcasm. The downright funny. The comebacks. These characters just have such a dynamic. The friendships are strong with this one.

"Your mouth uses up a lot of energy."


Meyer also has a handful of couples and none of the couples are similar. How can you have such a huge cast and not have one character skeleton? JUST SOMEBODY TELL ME HER SECRET, OKAY?! I admire how real and yet individually diverse her characters are.

The retelling parts are just superb, okay? It's this dystopian, sci-fi, loads of action kind of twist that just works.




She was no expert, but it seemed problematic to carry on a relationship on two different planets--
Er, a planet and a moon.
Or whatever.


I'm  not that big into romance. Most of the time I'm thinking, "They're shooting at you! Why the kissing now? Just because the enemy has stinky aim doesn't mean you ought to forget your brain."  There is a nice dose of romance in Meyer's books. They are fairytale retellings and those tend to involve one's true love, tra, la lala. . . you know the stories.


"It's not proper for seventeen-year-old princesses to be alone with young men who have questionable intentions."
"And what about young men who she's been best friends with since before she could walk?"
"Those are the worst."


Maybe it's how well the characters are written. Maybe it's because it's a fairytale retelling. Or maybe it's-- I don't know! This series is the only time I can get my girly girl on and full out cheer for every single romance scene. When it comes to love, not all of the characters are fluffy strawberry sponge cakes (with extra whipped topping). Having said that, some of them are (muchly so). They balance each other out. 


"Hello friend."
"Hello crazy."
(Scar and Winter's friendship in four words.)


This series is also about friendships. Especially the unlikely ones. Like Scarlet and Winter. Cinder and Thorne. Wolf and Cress. Big brother Kai, little sister Cress. Jacin and, uh. . . well, he and Scarlet have mutual respect because of Winter. 

Cinder and IKO! Iko is hilarious.




 Should I maybe give a short descript of the characters?

Cinder:
 our fearful, sarcastic leader, who also happens to be a mechanic and a cyborg, prefers socializing with androids than people, and gosh, she so selfless and empathizes with people

Kai:
 our sarcastic emperor who tries to be sensible but generally fails at logic, he has such a heart for his people, and I rather think he's brave because he's one of the few of characters who is continually face to face with Levana, his good intentions and adorableness hopefully make up for his real stupid decisions 


"You mean she doesn't intend to blow me up before the ceremony? How disappointing."


Levana:
our evil, psychotic queen, the villain you love to hate (I do at least), manipulative to the core, perhaps her own views and priorities are skewed, perhaps she's been taught that way, perhaps she paranoid to the point of insanity

Iko:
our droid with a very humane malfunction called emotions, the fangirl of fangirls (yes, the droid is the gooey shipper in this story), Cinder teaches her sarcasm, and she's not too bad at hand to hand fighting

Thorne:
our player, thief, mischief maker, the Han Solo of this fleet (he's even got his own ship, that he might have stolen on his way out of the military. . .), he's got a witty comeback for everything and charm that'll outlast the stars with an ego to match


"They're the first crew I've ever had, and most of them even call me Captain."


.:



Scarlet:
our fierce loyal friend, I really can't think of what other role Scarlet plays than friend, she's Cinder's supportive friend, she's Winter's guardian friend, she's the most distrusting and loyal person in all the galaxy and she'll gun down the French countryside to find her grandmere, she's a bit intense, a bit impulsive with determination and sass to go with


"It's just like the one Scarlet had." He flipped the gun in his palms, running his thumbs along the barrel. "She shot me in the arm once."
This confession was said with as much tenderness as if Scarlet had given him a bouquet of wildflowers rather than a bullet wound.





Wolf:
our conflicted guard dog (have you seen Elliot from Leverage?), a trained weapon, all teeth and short temper unless he decides he likes you, then he's surprisingly gentle and fast loyal, he's energy, nervous energy, excited energy, energy for the sake of energy, and he's been manipulated too many times

Jacin:
our other guard whose got major league trust issues, for good reasons, when he's not masked in a blank stare it's hard candor and sarcasm, regularly he's controlled, but around his best and only friend, he's more like a mischievous school boy

Cress:
our princess hacker, she knows the ins and outs of all things technology, low self confidence, but a sharp and active imagination, she's got fierce timidity and big dreams, and maybe a fangirl crush

Winter:
our true fairytale princess, a little crazy, completely harmless, her intentions are only good and sweet, she's butterfly wings, rainbow chases, and cotton candy fluff, and nearly EVERYBODY is her friend,
 

I do adore Cress' fierce timidity.

And Kai (harmless Kai) gets a knife and nearly stabs. . . I love that part. Mwahaha!

Scarlet is completely my new hero.

I applaud Meyer so much. She's my favorite author (if you've not figured that out).

Oh, and not to be depressing but:


Finally, finally, the small globe in the corner stopped turning and the netscreen brightened, revealing Levana in her sheer white veil.


The future has bad internet connections too.





(PS- I've been sourcing my gifs differently, so if you like any of them, just click on it and it *should* open a new tab into pinterest for you.)

Have you read Winter or any of the Lunar Chronicles? Who's your favorite character/OTP? AND if you've not read it yet, do you have any other favorite fairytale retellings?

Monday, May 2, 2016

All Around the Circuit World the Second // Music Monday

Yep, back again with my internet wanderings. 

I really like this Penslayer post about Masculinity & Femininity| Where They Overlap. This is some thought-provoking stuff and I love how she puts it. Hey, AND she also wrote this fabulous post about Strong Female Characters. Obviously, I think you should read it and it ought to be the first and last word on SFC okay? Okay. She also wrote this other post about encouraging bloggers, and if you haven't caught the drift yet, I'll say it outright. You SHOULD GO FOLLOW HER!

 By of way, my post is titled after this song. I've only heard Anthem Lights version though. I can't remember who originally sang it. . .





Kristen @ Metaphors and Moonlight talks about reposting/revamping old book review posts. I've actually never considered that.

Candice @ O Ye Scribes writes about some of the problems she recognizes in Christian fiction and points out that we still have to be careful of generalizing our judgments on them.

Aine from Writing on a Vintage Typewriter tells us how to get our friends to read that book we've been begging them to read. It's hilarious people! Just leave the book in the fridge, okay? Books aren't susceptible to freezer burn, right?

Last year, I got Needtobreathe's Rivers in the Wasteland album and am obsessed with it. (I do that. Collect copious small obsessions.) 






Gemma @ Chasing Daisies talks about the different types of punk. Just read it. You can thank me later.

Brent King has a different take Tolkien's orcs. This really fascinates me. As a Christian, I find a lot of parallels in fantasy but I never thought of this.

Victoria over @ Wanderer's Pen uses Iron Man to point out some awesome writing techniques and story concepts. Seriously digging these villain concepts!

This post here about Post-Feminist Fairy Tales is really interesting. It also makes the good point that sometimes these feminist stories go too far and end up committing sexism in reversed roles.  

 On that note, Cait @ Paper Fury wrote Do We Need Books That Don't Involve Discrimination? This post really made me think a lot. Especially since the topic of diversity is currently so popular. Oh, and she also wrote 10 Most Splendiferous Bookworm Moments. I love this post! May I just say that I agree that we ought to called book dragons instead of bookworms.

Let me make my case.

Dragons horde treasure. We book lovers horde/collect books/our treasure.

Dragons often sleep on their treasure. We fall asleep while reading a book or read before bed.

Dragons are sometimes buried in their treasure (think Smaug). How often do we whine that our TBR will crush us one day?


Hobbit Desolation of Smaug GIF Dragon


And as Cait also pointed out to me, dragons like shiny things. Who doesn't like a shiny book cover?!

Thank you.


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source

While I love Rivers in the Wasteland, I have yet to listen to any of Needtobreathe's older albums. Do you listen to them? (Yes, I'm asking which is your favorite song/album.) All the same, I'm majorly excited for their new album. Here's one of the songs released from it.





Now try to tell me that isn't catchy. Just try. 

OH! And Cait also finished her Wattpad story, The Dead Boy and the Paper Cut. Obviously, I think you should go read it, before she takes it down. It's hilarious! It's sad. It's just awesome, okay? Hands down awesome.

I just recently started following this one blog called down by the willows. You should check it out. Very beautiful!

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Starting Sparks: May Edition

Hello, hello. So Emily @ Ink, Inc. are once again here to bring you another writing prompt link up!

Please tell me you're excited? I mean, really. It's nearly summer, people! That means more time to read. More time for writing. (Writing a Starting Sparks post, yes?) For more information there's this page here.

So here's your button:






Here's your prompt:





Now go out and write! Write like a fiend!

 Anybody been reading anything awesome? Or writing? Have you been writing? What you think about this prompt here?