Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Writerly Wednesday: That One Question

I am not a closet writer. I don't keep the fact that I write hidden away. I slide my notebook out of my bag whenever inspiration strikes and don't care if people are around. Even if that person is my sole companion for the night and I am supposed to be enjoying the music. This, inevitably, leads to the question
What are you writing about?
Or, what is your story about? What is that scene about?
And I wind up sitting there trying not to glare because what a stupid question.
Okay, so maybe it isn't that stupid. Maybe I understand exactly why people would ask that question.
But maybe that doesn't really matter because I have no idea how to answer that question and people get frustrated with me but really, do you want a story that can be summed up in two sentences? I don't.
Twilight, I can tell you what that's about. Edward and Bella and vamps vs werewolves. It doesn't really get more complex than that. Not a fan.
Lord of the Rings? Do you have time for a twenty minute breakdown? You see, yeah, it's about trying to destroy the One ring and everyone makes it that simple like that was the goal of the book, but whoa, hold up there, I'm not sure it was. It was the uniting purpose for the main characters. But... that's not what the books are about. The books are about friendship and perseverance and hope and courage and love - all the different sorts - and humanity, and what is good and what is evil and when to give up and when not to give up and wonder and magic and Earth and Air. They are about hatred and power and corruption and pity and compassion and healing.
Why do you think so many people love LOTR?
I'm not writing Twilight. I'm not writing LOTR either.
But I am writing stories that are as complex as Tolkien's. Okay, maybe not quite as complex, but they are about humanity they way his are.
So when people ask "What's that story about?" I never know whether to give them the two sentence summary or what it is really about. I can give you the super glossed over guy meets girl, she changes his world one that would wind up on the back of the book. Or I could tell you what it's really about. It's about someone who winds up questioning everything he formally thought of as good and winds up super depressed and messed up. To put it succinctly. Because it is also about family and friendship and spirituality and hopes and dreams and fighting for what is right when you don't know what is right and about how this world isn't black and white and that sucks and is really confusing. It is about hopelessness and learning and the evolution of self.
And that's just one story. One story that I can't answer straight because I never know what people want to hear, but they seem to not want to hear what it is actually about. They want the plotline. But that's stupid because if you read my writing, that's not what you get. Sure, that is what the action is but if I wanted the action I would be writing some weird movie screenplays.
Oh. And what is the scene about. Worst. Question. Ever.
Because there is the scene isolated and how the scene ties into the whole story. So... which do you want?? Because it could be character A and character H sitting in a room being ridiculous. So then it is just about two characters sitting in a room, being ridiculous and seeing their exchange of words. But then add the rest of the story and what leads up to that scene and maybe the scene winds up being super important. Like, this is the first time Character A has laughed in over a year and this is the scene where Character H begins to really like Character A or something is said in this exchange that winds up carrying quite a bit of weight throughout the rest of the story (or multiple stories in my case because if it seems random, it probably isn't).
I don't think less of anyone for asking, by the way. I actually like it once I am done being frustrated because it means the person is interested and cares. Well, usually. Some people have this weird form of polite where they ask but don't care and then I just want to punch them in the face or throw oranges at them. But for most people, I enjoy them asking. I want to give them stickers and then wish I had completed the story already and could hand it to them so that they could read for themselves what it's about rather than have me at a loss for words and probably making no sense.
So to anyone who has asked, thank you for being interested enough to ask. But this will be my reply from now on. This whole post.
Well, not really. As that would mean keeping a printed out copy in my pocket whenever I ran into another human being and that sounds like so much work.
Have a wonderful Wednesday
~Kiartha Qwon'um

Friday, June 27, 2014

10 Year old Me's Awesome Writing Skills

I am trying to figure out how to put everything in my room again since I finally have time to put my room back together after it didn't exist for a while (okay, it did exist, but in a not-so-great form). This means lots of organizing and going through things. This means finding lots of gems from when I was little.

Like... this!

Since you probably can't read the words (they decided they are camera shy. Or something like that):

(In my perfect 5th grade cursive)
The Apple

I see the Apple so green
it smells so fresh and sweet
Smooth and bumpy and hard it feels
The apple is juicy and sour but sweet
I hear the crunch as I chew
That is the apple

Autumn Williams

I like this one because it sounds like something I would write now. Well, if you say it slightly sarcastically and with an expressionless face. Also, this apple is full of contradictions. I think it's actually about life. It's probably a poison apple. 


Again, the writing got camera shy. 

Autumn Williams
studious, bookworm
reading, cycling, shopping
brownie-blonde hair, blue eyes
talking, listening, watching,
animal lover, kind
Autumn Williams

I have no idea where the "cycling, shopping" part came from. I mean, the cycling maybe. When I was 10 my friends and I practically lived on our bikes. But the shopping? I shopped once a year, right before school, and at consignment shops. That is, if someone hadn't been kind enough to give us a bunch of hand-me-downs from their now teenage daughter. So maybe I wanted to shop?? 

Brownie blonde hair is a color? At least that is consistent with the fact that I call my hair color drunken brunette, so I guess I never knew how to describe my hair so making up new colors is a thing for me. 

And, egads, I forgot I used to be an animal lover *shudders*.

And the final one, with a fun (creepy, inaccurate) drawing to go along with it:

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So, my hair was basically a chocolate cat. Cool. 

Also, that outfit is an outfit I loved when I was ten. And I mean loved. I wore it all the time. 

I promise you all, my handwriting has improved and, for the most part, so has my drawing skills. 

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Things That Annoy Me

Ah. Life. In all its glory! And all the little things that bug the crap out of me.

Here's a list of those little things:

1. When I wake up on a Saturday morning and my family is home so I have to put on pants if I want to get food.

2. The days when I wake up only to realize I fell asleep as soon as I got home and thus there are pants on my body because this is how I usually am:

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3. When I mention Kali in a conversation and people think I am referring to Cali, as in California. People, Kali is an awesome Hindu goddess who likes eating food and doesn't diet until she looks like death. Partially because some days she purposely looks like death anyway.

4. When bugs crawl into my book while I am reading outside and whoops, I became a murderer.

5. People's obsession with having a gap between their thighs. Only super slim-hipped people can pull this off without me wanting to to start poking their legs.

sexy gap between your thighs

6. The random bruises and cuts that appear all over my body for no reason I can think of.
You know what I mean. That time you went to sleep then woke up with Texas on your thigh but the only thing you could have hit was your stuffed teddy bear.

7. Little tiny children having girlfriends and boyfriends. Okay, not little tiny children. When they are 3 it is adorable. But any time between 7 and 17 I want to whack them. I mean, really, little bitty 14 year olds are babies. What are they doing??

8. Tiny dogs (so anything below my knee).

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Me whenever I hear the sound of those little tiny painful claws or the sound of their godawful yapping
9. Especially tiny dogs in clothes. *shudder*

10. Having to take showers. I mean, seriously, if I didn't play in the mud why is there a need to get clean? Stupid hair. (Yeah, I am still the four year old girl who would run half-naked into a Vermont winter to avoid baths)

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Writerly Wednesday: Schedules

If you can't tell, I am terrible at schedules. Mostly because Life is not a scheduled thing. There isn't a heavenly messenger who comes down every morning and lets me know what unplanned events (by me) the heavens have in store for me. So I am often left with very little time or accidentally used up too much time. That happens, too.

Because of all that, I usually don't make schedules for myself.

But I want to.

I want to workout for an hour every morning. Not so much to lose weight (although, I wouldn't mind a little less jiggle on the thigh), but because my body loves the way it feels when I move and I love the way that I can stretch and the endurance I get.

I want to have ten minutes every day, at the very least, devoted to reading.

I want to sit down and write at least 3 times a week.

I want to keep up my blog posts consistently rather than have random weeks where nothing really happens.

Part of me believes this is all impossible because that just isn't how my life works. But part of me believes that if I start to actively fight for these things, I will begin to fight for some other things, some important things.

And I know that's not really about writing, but it also is all about writing. It's about making myself write, no matter what, and keeping track of what I am writing. In the long run, this is about actually finishing one of my many projects because I want to read through it, start to finish, and begin that treacherous thing called editing.

I want to give myself the time to spend with my characters and shaping their worlds. I want to pursue my dreams actively.

Even if it means giving myself a schedule when I hate schedules.

How about you? Do you find schedules useful or useless?

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Style Sunday:

For S.S. I have come to realize I have yet to master two things. 1. How to take a selfie. Especially selfies in mirrors. 2. Because of this unmastered skill, I prefer to ask other people to take pictures of what I am wearing for me. But I usually forget to because I really don't like asking favors of people. Especially favors that involve taking pictures of me because it makes me feel super vain. Even though it is for a blog and is about the random clothing I wear, not how I look or anything like that.

I also realized that it's super hard to keep up a blog when grounded from a computer. Because I still manage to get grounded. My family is weird.

So, these outfits are from random days for the past 2, maybe 3, weeks. A lot of outfits I loved are missing, but there are pictures! Without further ado, here you go!

Outfit 1:

Nothing too special here. I wanted to wear a skirt and then paired it with a brown shirt. That skirt, by the way, did scary things to my hips. You can't really tell in the picture, but I went from pretty decent hips and butt (as in, I have them, you can tell) to, holy crap, I think Texas came to hang around my pelvis today. Also, yes, that is a screwdriver. I'm pretty sure this happened right after half my room ended up in the bathroom because of installing a new carpet.

Outfit 2:

Outside of my creepy demon eyes here... i like this outfit, despite those being my mom jeans because half the time they fit like mom jeans. Nothing against mom jeans, I find them super comfy and like to art in them. That hat (the one that isn't a fedora but I don't know the real name) has been with me since I was 13. It is somehow still alive and it makes me love it all the more. Also, I love putting long sleeves with shorts whenever possible. My legs don't like being confined but my arms find sleeves comfy. It's part of why I like wearing dresses.

Outfit 3:

This was for hiking. So, ya know. Tank top with a sweater thing that can come off if I got too hot (and then get tied in really weird ways around me because I can't be a normal person. I'm pretty sure it became something similar to a toga at some point) and, of course, shorts. Super comfy shorts that don't give random pains and are flexible so that I can streeeetchhh and run around like a crazy person. Nothing spectacular.

Outfit 4:

More creepy demon eyes! And my favorite jeans. Or one of them. Avery weird thing because I am not a huge fan of skinny jeans. I got these at Aeropastle on sale for $5. They fit amazingly and let people know that, hey, I have hips (you can't tell as much in this picture, they are still there amazingly). The shirt is 3 years old, but I love it still. All purple and flowy and whatnot. Also, that is my crazy windowsill with all sorts of bottles I want to start decorating.

Outfit 5:

Amid all the crazy stuff, that is me. Attempting a mirror selfie. I do have a face. It was probably making weird expressions at that moment, so I am fine with it being hidden. Mwahaha. Anyway, the clothes. Black shorts. A striped (because I secretly love stripes) shirt with a super cool fit. One day it will be up here without a sweater so you can see its awesomesauceness. And a very used grey sweater - more shorts with long sleeves!

Outfit 6:

Shorts and long sleeves again. This had actually been just a tank top and shorts most of the day, as I went to the arboretum by my house and painted a ton. Then It got later, and thus colder, and my friend wanted to go to Barnes and Noble, so I threw on this sweater and my boots.

Outfit 7:

 So I forgot the flash existed and then for some reason didn't bother to take a picture without the flash. But that is a black vest and a pretty pale pink top. I paired them with skinny jeans and... boots. I think I wore my boots This outfit was for a Shakespeare audition and I dorked out and went as Ren Faire as possible with what is in my closet.

 My arms aren't long enough to capture more, but this might give you a better sense of the top. Random note: I just realized that my hair doesn't end where I thought it sis in this picture. I have strange hair.

Outfit 8:

I make fantastic faces, right? This dress is so much fun to wear. The only problem is that a split goes up basically to my crotch so I have to sneak some shorts underneath there. Forever 21 had these useful yoga shorts (not sure what they are actually called. Legging shorts? Biking shorts?) that I wear all the time because 1. working out and 2. dresses.

For most of the night, once it was colder out, I wore this jacket with the dress. I found it on sale for $10 and got super happy because I could actually afford it.

Outfit 9:

Artist crop jeans from American Eagle with a Paramore T. Nothing special, but some days jeans and a t-shirt are the perfect thing to wear. Also, I really do love wearing basic things like this.

Hopefully over the course of the next week I will master taking pictures of myself (that sentence is so strange to say). Hopefully I amused you. Or something.

I am off to go work my butt off and to try not to buy all the clothes at my job. If your job isn't making you work today, enjoy your Sunday, if it is, good luck!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Writerly Wednesday: Timelines as an Author

Last night I joined a friend to watch a zombie movie. This was my first zombie movie ever and only happened as a birthday present to him, since he has been trying to convince me that zombies are awesome. I winded up freaking myself out and had to calm myself down by holding a knife, and thus scaring him because most normal people don't carry knives as if they are an extension of their body.

On the way over to his house, while there was still light out and I was not yet terrified of everything, a zombie story came to me. A really mad protagonist, who, as far as I can tell, defies the normal zombie cliches. From the little I do know about zombie media, since I am only recently exposed to anything.

Since Friend Person is an avid Zombie person, I figured I would tell him about my story. Because I secretly love it already. And actually will have science stuff in it. Mwahaha!

Anyway, so I told him about it and mentioned that I started another one this week. Because I am constantly referring to a million different stories, he sort of gave me this look before asking about my writing process. Or, timeline. Timeline would be a better word. He didn't ask if I force myself to write or how my writing comes about. He asked if I write from start to finish, working on a book until it's done. In trying to explain what he meant he gave some hilarious summaries of Othello and Hamlet. Apparently Shakespeare was secretly ghetto.

Only one time have I ever worked solely on one story. And I did get that story finished. With lots of pain towards the end because the characters stopped cooperating, but it is finished. I think that took about a month. I would come home from school and sit at the computer, bleeding out words and sometimes holding knives up to the character's throats until they started talking.

I still hate that ending by the way.

Almost everything else, though, is scattered. Everywhere. I can be actively working on five different stories withing a week. Sometimes more. This past week alone I have started two new stories, started filling in some stuff for one, and written for... 3 characters. I think. It feels that way.

A lot of my stories I can't work start to finish. I will know basic stuff or know the characters extremely well, but I don't know everything. Or, because everything is super connected, I need to make sure everything is as matched up as possible. I can't have it all nice and sunny when in another story, at the same house, the same night, it's all nice and rainy. Because I am both lazy and tend to throw all of myself into my stories, I try not to write stuff with a high likelihood of having to be tossed or changed significantly.

There are two stories I have been working on since I was 12. They are probably the least complete. Mostly because I knew the basic plot but was missing a lot of the world. If I had finished those stories when I wanted to, so much would be missing. I would have had no idea who the wizard was or how important my MC's lineage is. Or who her grandmother is and thus why she actually is important even though she's not the hero, her friend is.

My fantasy trilogy would have had the wrong history and would have been really confusing. It took me years to figure out where in the universe those stories are and why they need to be told. And they do. In the universe I have, those stories are super important. But if I had sat down when I was twelve, or even fifteen, and made those stories happen, so much of their depth would have been gone.

So I let my writing happen naturally. If I can't get anything story-wise out of my characters but I want to write, I will start working on characterization. Usually if I am doing this someone wants to write. Sometimes five people want to write and I wind up sitting at my notebook or computer staring at the blankness because nothing comes out.

But mostly, only one character wants my attention, so that's who I work on. It's a bit of a messy process, as sometimes it's really hard to find that one scene I know I wrote at some point, and piecing everything together is going to be fun as heck, but oh well, that's how I write. Though, admittedly, I am considering starting to be home evenings and working mainly on one story because I want that one done and I think it's time for it to be told.

So maybe this time I am ready to sit and work almost solely on a story. Or to focus on that one, as I am sure there will still be the clatter of other characters.

What's your writing process/timeline?

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Travel Tuesday: Woodstock, NY - Part One

Last July my family went up to Vermont where our grandfather's house is. Since I could drive and I have my own car, I went up separately, with a friend of mine. The friend who has appeared a couple of times in various posts because, well, just because. Anyway, so we were heading up by ourselves, me driving up there for the first time and her having never gone up there. And with my dad's directions.

I  don't remember who messed up the directions, but somehow we took an exit that didn't make any sense, but, hey, it's not like I remembered how to get to Vermont, so it could have been the way for all I knew.

So we followed the road. And came upon this cute little hippy town. Being the crazy, semi-hippie (okay, SUPER hippie), people we tend to be, we had to walk around this little town. Also, we were kind of hungry and had to pee. I think. And we pulled over and called my dad who had no idea where we were and couldn't help us right then and neither of us had any way of looking up directions, sooo... We hopped out of the car and I started grinning because I loved the town already.

Woodstock, New York has nothing at all to do with Woodstock the festival. That's Bethel Woods. I actually saw a concert there once. The Jonas Brothers. Despite liking folk music and more Woodstock Festival approved music, that's who I saw there. Anyway... but Woodstock New York is a completely Hippie town.

Tinker Street, Woodstock, New York

If that store doesn't scream Hippie, not sure what does.

There was an adorable little book shop. Two actually. One was in a house and was crowded with all sorts of fascinating and old books. I wanted to climb the shelves and start playing a guitar. The other was on the main street with all the businesses. Not that the first one wasn't on the main street, it was just down a little ways.

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This one was super adorable and had a stairway with some shelves going halfway up it. So I looked at the YA section while sitting on the stairs. I like books and I like sitting on stairs so it made me happy. I really liked the interior set-up. Sometimes little bookstores can be a little lame in how they are set up, probably in part due to space issues and the fact that they have an eclectic assortment of books that sometimes don't fit well together. I still love those shops anyway. But, back to this shop, it was a happy little book shop with a pretty decent variety of books. At least the ones I looked at. I have been in a couple of book stores where the YA and children's section felt unloved. Not so here. I bought a Dragonbreath book from here. 

Oh! There was a road going one way that I think was part of Woodstock. There was another bookstore on that road. A lot of the books were super fascinating and I wanted to buy half the shop. You guys might not have wanted to, as some people aren't interested in all religions and spirituality and psych stuff. But I am, so at one point I raided the children's section, full of really interesting books, and disappeared from reality for a while. 

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This is the door. It's called Mirabai.
Then there were these:

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There were so many "ON THIS SITE STOOD" signs. Most of them relatively weird. The first one we saw was pretty much a name and the day she died. I think. There was someone who stood in a spot and thought. I have to find my pictures of these signs because they amused us so much. Dear little Woodstock, how high were you when you made and erected these signs? Not that I mind. I loves them. 

At some point in time, possibly after I get my butt up there again, I will tell you more about this strange, adorable little town. But, if you are ever in New York and like cute little towns, especially hippie ones, you should totally check this place out and tell me what you loved about it. Unless you hated it. Then stay away from me with your opinion or I will slap you with fish! Not really, as I would be super curious as to how someone can hate such a place. 

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Writerly Wednesday:

Yesterday was crazy so I didn't make it to Travel Tuesday. Again. So hopefully next week.

But, anyway, today is Wednesday, so I have something else.

I am sure you know about the Marvel Universe, especially the movies.

Have you seen them? You should. I love them. I love Loki in Thor: The Dark World in particular. I want to find him and love him and find a way for him to still be an evil villain because, honestly, he's kinda sexy as a villain, but then also make him a nice evil villain. No. I am not fangirling. No idea what you are talking about. This is completely healthy. Actually, it is. I am not super obsessed. That's just what that movie invoked in me.


So there is the Marvel Universe.

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from through google

I don't know if you have watched all the movies and have seen everything on social media connecting everything, but, Marvel is scary. Not even in how everything is so well planned out. But in the casting. I was watching Thor  and one of the guys from the 2nd Captain America was in it for a minute and I started making weird noises and scaring my dad (who was watching it before I hopped over him to sit on the couch and eat his rice cakes).

So, that level of planned out ness (if that makes sense. And I am sure there should be hyphens there but I don't want to use them. So sue me.) scares me. Just a wee bit.

But whenever I start to get super my mind is about to implode feeling from it...

I remember that I have a universe like that. My friend calls it the Naomtumniverse. As it is hers, too.

And, believe me, if you think Marvel is mind-imploding, we implode our minds all the time.

Or used to, anyway. I think we have gotten kind of used to it by now.

Every story is linked together through something. Buildings, characters, species, gods. All sorts of things.

It is kind of maybe sort of really exponentially (it's a cool word but used for math, apparently. Stupid math) crazy.

If anyone is a fan of Tolkien, a true fan because I am going to be a Tolkien snob here, you know that everything of his is connected somehow. Even Roverandom, which was adorable, is connected to Middle Earth somehow. I found that amazing when I realized that. And then laughed because we always said we were like Tolkien and Lewis and ah-ha! we were even more like Tolkien than we ever dreamed.

So one day, we will (somehow, I promise you, it will happen, I demand it) one day be sitting with our books on your shelves and you will pick up the first book and then begin reading others and then you will have to go back and read that first one again because holy babies and bananas they are connected! and then your mind will kind of sit in a daze for a while because of EVERYTHING.

And we will laugh because imagine writing all of that and having to deal with editors who will want to cut out "useless" scenes that actually are the post-credits sequences for the Marvel universe, just for the Naomutumniverse.

And it will be fantastic.

And yes, I have used And possibly way too much. And that might sound crazy, all of that, but it's true. Just maybe not you reading our books, although you totally should. As in, you're reading this, right? Look for my name on the cover of a book one day. Or scan this blog in a year or two to see if anything is happening with our universe print-wise.


Monday, May 5, 2014

Style Sunday!

Helloooo everyone (whomever that may be)!!

I am super late and shall have this done before Monday comes but I am here! With Style Sunday!

And obviously having way too much fun with exclamation marks but I am tired and slightly energized mentally. It's an odd combination.

So, these outfits are from the past two weeks, whenever I had someone to actually take a picture of me wearing clothes. Wait. Not that I have people take pictures of me not wearing clothes. I meant that people don't normally take pictures of me so asking people to take pictures of me for the purpose of clothing was very strange. Like armadillo sipping orange soda in my closet strange.

The first one

This picture is weird, but I asked The Boy Person to take pictures and every other one he took winded up being when he was asking me to make weird face and do weird things (like pout and snarl and be a monster). So while this isn't the best shot and there is a car in the background...

I wore this hiking. It was a sort of chilly day and I wanted to look kind of nice since this was before church.

This sweater is one of my favorites. Mainly because I saw it and that is exactly the sweater a character of mine wears. It's basically her trademark piece.

My sneakers matched, by the way. Just in case you care.

Don't ask me what's up with the lighting. My phone's camera can be weird.

That is my all time, favorite flannel. I wore it to school. Maybe. Not sure.

I just love wearing it. It is huge and engulfs me and likes to hide any shape I have when I button it up.

Sometimes I wear it with leggings and I feel like I'm from the 90's. But with jeans I just feel super comfy and like I want to drink tea and write all day.

So, this is only a partial of an outfit I loved.

Yes, I know I look slightly alien-esque. It might be the make up, which I never wear. I only wore make up, actually, because I had make up from my show the previous night left over on my face that wouldn't come off, so I just fixed it up a little.

Anyway. That is my favorite hat. It is straw and brown and has peacock feathers and is wonderful.

Then underneath it is a cozy brown sweater I love sinking into.

What you can't see is the pair of shorts, black knee-high socks, and my purple converse. The whole outfit was very Scotch-like.

I wore this to a book sale, walking around a little town, and to a youth group.

 I wore a belt with this dress. Which was weird. Because belts around my waist rarely happen. But when I bought this dress I had a skinny belt on and decided to try it with the dress and loved it.

The dress and sweater I both bought at Macy's for around $7 dollars each. It was amazing. The sweater I knew I wanted because it's such a pretty color, but the dress I wasn't sure about. I liked it, but I don't normally wear non-structured dresses, especially dresses with patterns. But then I found out the wonderful sale and thought about summer and bought it.

The only thing wrong with this outfit was having to wear shorts underneath it because fashion people think that non-see-through fabric is super hard to make.

This was for the last day of Fiddler, when I was super happy and excited and needed some cheery clothes because it was over.

What you can't see are the high-heeled boots underneath my jeans. My super comfy, worn jeans that I love.

It's that sweater again! And a ridiculous pose that I just had to share with you guys to match the ridiculous headband. Thank you Blaire Waldorf for following me to the mall and giving me an intense desire to buy one. And thank you Forever 21 for selling them for 3 dollars.

There were other ridiculous pictures from this but...

These were my Arting clothes. My mom jeans that are loose and hide my butt and were okay to get paint all over. A band T (Flyleaf, if you are being super nosey). And a button down.

P.S. I learned that I no longer know how to model.

I bought this dress for one of the first times I went to New York Ren Faire. Wait. No. For my second year going. There weren't any clothes that looked time period appropriate. Then I found this and it made me think of a fairy.

So, of course, I had to buy it.

Anyway, I wore this Thursday. First, because it was beautiful out so I wanted to wear a skirt. Second, because I had my voice class which meant singing and I wanted a dress like Emmelie de Forest wore for Eurovision and my awesome skirt disappeared. So this sufficed and I felt epic.

Especially with the hemp and clay beads anklet I added and a pretty leaf necklace.

So, that's it, folks. My first Style Sunday. You get to be as confused as people who see me in real life are by my wardrobe. And get to see how weird I look in pictures because, really, cameras and I have a weird relationship.

Enjoy your passions this week and find an outfit that you adore!

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Applications and Random Findings

My life right now is rather confusing. Mostly because I am 19 and there is no having people tell me exactly what to do right now.

This means I have a ton of schools I want to apply to, no money for applications, the desire to stay here, the desire to travel, and I still have no idea what I want to do with my life.

Okay. That's a lie. I want to travel. I want to write and read and eat. I want to help people. I want to make an impression on this world and be someone I am proud of. I want to unleash my potential and explore myself and the world around me.

It's just the job part I have no idea what I am going to do about.

Because you need degrees to do school and that takes time and money I don't have. I want to take crash courses and become friends with the experts and float around and go to every school and this is why immortality has become rather appealing all of a sudden.

So I am actually going to apply to schools to transfer to and pray my bad grades don't affect me too much and then hope Life chooses for me where I am going next because I can't. I will run to a scientist and ask them to clone me or giving me some superpowers or teleportation or something before I choose.

Or go hiking, fall on the ground, curl up in a ball, and start singing random songs from Ireland and Denmark while my boyfriend looks on and tries to rouse me with promises of cheeseburgers and milkshakes and vegetables. That might happen (again), too.

If you can't tell, I am horrible at making decisions. I am good at finding random things, though.

Like a script I wrote.
wrong way, but I can't change it...
That is the script. I remember making that cover, but I don't remember writing the script or why I wrote it or anything. I just know that it is mine because 1. That's the way I used to write 2. My language is in there with stuff no one else would know. So unless I have a really creepy stalker. 

Then this is on the last page. Do you see that 100%? So, apparently, this was for school because why else would there be a grade on it. But... I never took a class I had to write a skit for. 

Okay. I did. Satire, Parody and Humour. But that was in groups. And with partners. And I took Song lyrics and Song writing but a skit is not a song. At least not this one. 

I have to say, the skit was hilarious. Mostly because of all the random things it made me think of. So I need someone to read it for me to see if it's as laughtacular if you aren't me. It might very well be because of how absurd it is. Lot's of random people with random insults and an adorable little boy and his confused mother. 

I really really want to find people to act out this skit for me. 

I shall, hopefully, see you again tomorrow for my first Style Sunday (squeee!!). Have a lovely, sunny, inced-tea (if you like such things) sipping day!

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Writerly Wednesday: Pens, Ink, and Characters

Howdy Ya'll!

(No, I did not turn into a cowgirl over night or take a trip to Texas. I'm just slightly strange. In case that hasn't become apparent yet.)

I have been doing some writing this week because, whew! musical is finally over and I can have time to write again! Mwahaha!

Not much writing happened, but enough happened for me to have fun with something.

My characters have certain pens. They even fight over some pens because there is only so much ink and the pen is so pretty and red (like flowers - the happy character - and like blood -a very unhappy, slightly crazy character). Some refuse to use pens and will ONLY use a keyboard (no matter how much I beg and plead. These people are stubborn as heck). But most of them like pens. Two of them will only use pens. And use the same pen (that red one).

Maybe it's strange, using certain pens for certain stories. But I love it. I love that I can flip through a notebook and see certain ink or the way a certain pen writes and know what story that scene belongs to. It makes my life easier. Post-writing, of course, as sometimes I don't have the right pen or can't find the pen right away and I begin freaking out because man, is this an important scene and I want to write it right now. Then there's the what am I going to do when this sacred red pen runs out, because it will at some point, and my two lovelies (or unlovelies, really) stop refuse to write until I find it again. But most of the time, it's fun.

I also try to use different handwriting, since a lot of the stories are first person and none of these people would have the same exact handwriting as me. Except maybe one. So using different pens helps make that easier, since every pen makes my handwriting come out just a little bit different to begin with.

Fun fact (in case you care): None of my characters like blue pens. None. This makes me super happy since I have a dislike for blue ink. Unless it's the light blue that only colorful packs of pen have. I like that blue.

Does anyone else use certain pens or colors to when writing?

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Writerly Wednesday: A Bit Late but Let's Talk Characterization

I was perusing the internets when I found 25 Things About Creating Characters by Justin Mclachlan. Since I am a writer and since I like reading this lists, I clicked on the link and tralala, read the list.

Sometimes these lists are pretty useless for me. When it comes to characterization, I know my characters. It's a matter of stitching everything together and deciding what the reader needs to know (like age. Readers like age, while I prefer to give random details. Age is a bit more need to know in most cases). I still like reading them, though. They serve as a reminder or a checklist, something to hold my characters up to and make sure they are developing well. Sometimes I even catch one that was sliding through the cracks and go crazy trying to figure EVERYTHING out. This is impossible, by the way. I cannot know everything about any of my characters. I can know quite a bit, but not everything. In some cases, this is very good.

Most of the time, I don't have any reaction to what I just read in and of itself. This time, I did. If you like, you can click on the title of the post thing I read and read it for yourself to see if you agree with me. If not, that's okay.

8. Real people sometimes like lascivious and licentious things:  porn or weed or orgies, or porn, weed and orgies—you get the idea. So, why can’t your character like some of these things, too?
While I agree with this to some extent, basically every book I have read with a male MC has him liking all 3 of those things. So... maybe this isn't really a necessary comment? My version of this would be something along the lines of "real people sometimes like weird things like Cow statues and Veggie Tales and anything Irish. So why can't characters like weird things, too?"

I'm not kidding with this. It bothers me how normal most characters are. They like normal things. They like beer and weed and boobs or muscles. Things we expect people to like. I loved Unspoken  by Sarah Rees Brenna because her characters liked weird random things. Just like real life people. Someone I know loves everything Icelandic. I get super excited about really weird things. A friend of mine was obsessed with pickles for a while. Porn and weed and orgies are so boring and normal and everywhere.

 15. At a base level, every character wants the same things: food, shelter, sex...
Ahem. Excuse me. Sex? Every character wants sex? Half of my characters couldn't care less about sex. I have Kevin, who is asexual and cares way more about everything else. I have Dave (by the wayside, you are getting these names because they are relatively common names so I don't care if you know the names) who never wants sex. At all. I have females who are the same way. It just... no. Not every character wants sex because not every real life person wants sex.

I was so offended reading this. I mean, yes, sexual people, it's weird to wrap your mind around the fact that there are people out there who ohmybabies don't want to have sex or don't care about sex or kind of just stare at sex because it's confusing and why does it even exist let's just eat pasta. Also, this is totally debasing. And wrong. And says something about our society as a whole.

Why? Cause let's face it, you can have all the sex you want, but if you do not have a relationship, a working, active, personal relationship with someone, you will be unsatisfied. That is what every character wants. Not sex. But a relationship - maybe a messed up one -  but a relationship. That specific character may be overly afraid of relationships - not romantic ones, just fyi, but any relationship, be it mother or father or friend or lover - but there is still that desire there, somewhere.

So, you're characters, Mr. Person can want sex. I don't care about those characters. Because those aren't people I know. I know people who want food and shelter and a meaningful relationship, sometimes with sex as a bonus, sometimes not.

16. Just because a character lives in the past doesn’t mean she has to conform to outdated stereotypes.
It also doesn't mean he or she can't be in one of those stereotypes. Whenever I read a book set in Victorian times, the females are lumped into either 1. superfluous and silly or 2. headstrong and super independent, take no crap, revolutionary. Those are the new stereotypes. I'm not sure what the outdated stereotype being referred to here is - probably women who need men to save them - but let me tell you something, those stereotypes can still exist. They became stereotypes for a reason. Not every women alive was super headstrong and revolutionary. A lot were, but a lot weren't. What's wrong with those stories? Or how about the characters who are just human and alive during a certain time period?

18. In real life, we strive to avoid conflict. But in fiction, characters who always agree have no life—at least, not one worth reading about.
Has this guy ever strived to avoid conflict in an extremely conflict-ridden situation? I don't think so. I read and thus sometimes write realistic fiction. I enjoy it. Because it's life. Usually the nitty-gritty aspects of it. Let me tell you, I live in a family where striving to avoid conflict actually makes conflicts worse. I have a life. I have a life and emotions and reactions and responses. Someone could easily write a story off of my interactions with my family and it would be worth reading.

Why? Because is situations where taking sides is easy, the character who says "I will not take sides. And this is why" can be way more interesting than the person who says "I am taking sides" and is completely ignorant. Avoiding conflicts doesn't mean completely out of fear. How about the reason why the character is striving to avoid conflict is explored? Something like this depends on the skill of the writer, not on what is happening.

 20. Don’t be surprised when a character you’ve created does something you don’t expect. That’s called magic and you should just get out of its way.
This is so completely true. Although I'm pretty sure I did not create my characters because when I create characters, they suck. So... when a character appears in my head and demands I know his or her story... don't be surprised by random things. But really, feel free to get in its way. Challenge it. Fight it. Make sure it is actually there. Then hug it because it really is fantastic.

 22. Real people are seldom interesting enough to make great characters. Create, don’t imitate.
Um... Real people are way more interesting than most of the "great" characters I have read. So I'm not really sure what is happening here. I think real lives are seldom interesting enough to write a book off of, possibly, but real people, no. Real people are interesting. Possibly too interesting because I have no idea how to translate them to paper.

And obviously, I do not know everything there is to know about writing and characters. So this is not an end all say all, but I do know that some of the points I have made here about writing a character, are points that are valid and writers should pay attention to. Because readers want this stuff. Readers can tell the difference between a character who likes weed and a character who has an obsession with elephants. Weed is normal, but random obsessions are pretty normal, too. Not only that, but those elephants will make that character and individual. Those don't always exist. Especially not in YA.

Do you have any modifications to the 25 Things post or my responses to it?

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

I'm Back and Making some Changes

So I have been gone. For a while. Probably not as long as I am thinking, but long enough.

I have a confession to make. I kinda sorta left this blog for another one (Autumn Unleashed). I needed to.

In the process I realized I had abandoned the purpose of this one. Sure, I wrote some posts that I really liked, but in general, this blog isn't supposed to be about that stuff (thus my new one). This is supposed to be about my thoughts and adventures. Basically, it's supposed to be fun. Mainly. Because sometimes writing gets super serious and nitty-gritty.

Now: the changes!

I will be making the purpose of this blog anew. Yes, it will still be the thoughts and adventures of me, this silly writerly person. But with some new additions. Like...

Writerly Wednesday: in which I inform you about writerly stuff. Such as difficulties I have had in writing, if I have written, what sort of stuff I am working on. Have I made any progress? And at some point I have to read a thing on grammar, I am sure, because I feel like this whole paragraph thing is error laden. 

p.s. I might also talk about/share other writer's stuff on these days because there are awesome writers out there. 

Style Sundays: Shut up. I know. That's girly. But... I believe that style is very important in characterization. It says a lot about someone in little ways. And... 1. Style is not fashion. I could care less about fashion. Style is personal, what an individual wears. 2. Style is nothing to judge people by. Sometimes it is meaningless, sometimes not. But in general, it is fairly helpful and defines a lot of the world. 

So what shall Style Sundays be? I will post pictures of the various things I have worn throughout the week because A. It's my style and you might want to know more about me as a person and B. I want to keep track of all the things I wear because my style is rather random. So these posts may be amusing.

And at times, I may include some styles my characters love, either on me or just pictures.

And... My personal favorite -

Travel Tuesday: (Notice the green because T's are always green, but especially the word Tuesday)
I haven't been able to travel a ton, but I have been to places in this world. Some very nice places that I would like to share with you. Here I will choose places I have ventured to and share my thoughts on the places and my adventures there as well as some information about the place. This may not be useful to your life, but I hope you find it interesting. 

And that's it! I am back! If you so wish, you can click on the link somewhere up there and visit what I have been up to for the past month or so, if not, here's an impromptu Travel Tuesday and hope to see you around!

nyc_skyline1.jpg (470×311)
I do not own this. Unfortunately my current phone doesn't have my pictures of this skyline. But, it looks like where I got this from doesn't own it either.

So, since I'm not delving into anything too much right now, I'm making this a game. 

Can you name that certain place I have traveled to??

Thursday, January 2, 2014

That Cliche Post About 2013

It's the 2nd day of 2014 and I've been thinking about stuff (and giggling with friends on beds and playing Scrabble and babysitting crazy people). Mostly the past year and everything that those twelve months have cumulated into. A lot of it sucked. I mean, ripped through my entire being stole my world from me sucked. Other parts were awesome. Through the sucky and the awesome, I learned a lot. Or, sometimes finally learned something I should have learned a while ago. 

So, here's part of my 2013.

1. I started college. Most people start up in the fall, but I shook my fist at tradition and started in the spring. Except, I was really shaking my fist at the helplessness I felt and was deciding I wanted some say in my life. 

From this I rediscovered acting, discovered that I love plays (as somehow, I never really explored them before), and got my license. 

2. Writing is definitely part of me. If I stop writing, I stop being a decent person. So to not kill people, I must write. 

Wait. I don't mean that when I stopped writing I actually killed people. I just was a really disgruntled, horrible me that I hope I never am again. 

3. I came to accept the fact that, yeah, I have depression. It happens. It is there. Beneath the surface. Partly situational, partly not. And that's okay. I'm not going to let it control me. I will be okay despite all the grey, because this world does suck, I can't deny that, but there are a lot of beautiful things I can learn to enjoy. 

4. I loved. I loved with my heart and soul turned inside out and it's not billowy, it's not all flowers and picnics and happy songs. Turns out love is anything but the romantic we are taught it is. It is raw and painful and so intense it actually is breathtaking. I loved until it hurt. Partly because maybe it wasn't returned, and maybe it never will be, and maybe it broke my heart in the process, but dammit, did I love. 

5. I learned to fight for myself. 

I have fought most of my life. For God, for my brother, for my mom, for friends, but for the first time ever, I decided that I am worth the fight, too. From this I got loads of self-confidence (which, for the record, I actually had already, more than most people, but I got a ton more). I began to look in the mirror and be okay with who I was looking at because it didn't matter what other people thought, it didn't matter what I looked like, I was valuable, I had plenty to offer the world and if people judged me on my appearance, their loss. 

6. My parents officially got separated. Through a restraining order and loads of drama, but Dad no longer lived at home and my mom got Divorce papers sent out. I have no idea how people view divorces, but they aren't fun. Not for any children involved. This one was slightly more dramatic than some in it's coming about since my dad isn't the most mentally sound person, but still, I can't imagine that most divorces are somehow easier on the kids. 

Also, despite being 19, when these things aren't supposed to affect me because I am old enough now to not care or feel or something like that, this did affect me. A lot. My dad was officially out of the house two days before my birthday, which was pleasant, and it screwed up what was supposed to be a really nice day. Not only have I had to deal with all the responsibilities of being the middle man between my parents and both of their remarks about each other, but they are my parents. They raised me Christian. They read the Bible. So, I always thought they would stay together. That when everyone else in my family was divorcing, they wouldn't. So it was a pretty big hit that the divorce papers are out there. 

7. I had my heart broken. Yeah, yeah. Teenage angst. But, it happened. It's there. Still there, actually. And in some ways, it was good. It definitely helped me better myself. It taught me how to forgive. How to not hate random people I have never met. Taught me that sometimes, it's okay to show up at someone's door and immediately break down because, guess what, I don't have to hold myself together all the time. Being broken sucks, but it also helped me to grow in a lot of ways. 

8. I learned some cool car stuff. 

9. I got myself back. This is super important because, well, losing yourself is never good. I don't suggest it. And getting yourself back is super hard and sometimes terrifying. 

10. I went to awesome concerts. Switchfoot, Family Fiction/The Lone Bellows/The Now Now, Relient K/The Almost, The Lumineers/Dr. Dog, and Creation Fest (with way too many bands, but Switchfoot again). And I mean AWESOME. Switchfoot is fantastic, I had so much fun at Relient K, and The Lumineers was magical (it was an outdoor concert with a river nearby and stars and a city skyline and then them and their music). 

11. I stopped trying to be "the perfect Christian". Or whatever. I'm not a typical Christian. I never have been. A long time ago I stopped trying to make people think I am perfect and I am okay and nothing is ever wrong. I don't judge people based on appearance. I try to include every kind of person in my group of friends. I question God. I fight with Him. I want to punch Him in the face and cry into His shoulder at the same time. I think when others say stop. I am constantly told by Christians that I have to be something that I'm not. And I am done with it. I stopped trying. I started just being impossible, fighting, questioning, curious me. So I don't call myself a Christian anymore because when I look at Christians, I don't see myself and I started embracing that warrior girl who loves no matter who you are. 

12. I questioned. I questioned a lot. My sexuality (as in if I am sexual), my ability to love, my relationships, everything I have been taught since I was little,  what I want in life. All sorts of stuff. I think I like most of the answers I got. Most. Some I want to punch in the face and stab with multiple swords. 

13. I am lucky enough to have someone who came back to my in January and proved that sometimes, there are people who are just meant to be together, whose bond will not be broken. Not permanently. And this person isn't a Significant Other. Not in that way anyway. 

14. I collected the weird habit of writing lists. I used to never write lists. Now they are everywhere. 

15. Oh! I almost forgot. I worked at a Preschool and loved loved loved it. I want to go back in time and hug all of the days those kids made me laugh and smile and all the times I was able to make them laugh and smile and all the hugs and games and secret faces being made behind the teacher's back. Those months of working there helped me get through life and showed me that I might want to work with younger children all my life because they are incredible. 

So, there's a strange synopsis of my year in no particular order. 

I'm hoping for a better 2014 with a whole lot more epic moments, but I'm just grateful to have another year to learn and grow. Hope you all are having a wonderful 2014 so far and that this year is better than the last, whether 2013 smiled upon you or frowned.